Saturday, July 4, 2009

An Independence Day to Remember

Like you, I'm sure, I have many memories of Independence days through the years.

I can remember going to the car races with my Grandpa Frank and Grandma Mamie and waiting, waiting, waiting for the races to be over. I wanted to watch the fireworks! I also remember flying in their little airplane to a nearby town to go to a town picnic in the park. I was so upset when Grandpa wanted to leave early before the fireworks. I was later thrilled to watch them from the air!

I remember standing out on Grandma Mamie and Grandpa Frank's front porch and playing with sparklers. Sparklers were my favorites. I used to try to write my name with them in the air. They were the next best thing to a real magical fairy wand. Hey, I was young! I wasn't that smart about sparkler safety, though. I dropped one on the porch and then stepped on it with a bare little foot. Yikes! I could wail with the best of them.

Grandma and Grandpa moved to Texas when I was a teenager. So, from then on, most of my Independence Days were celebrated on the third with my mom and step-dad. I'm not sure if we had the big cook out and shot the fireworks because it was their anniversary or because they didn't have to work the next day.

I remember my first Fourth of July as a young bride. We lived just half a block from the college football field where they were shooting the fireworks display. We invited my Dad and Annie to come and watch with us from our driveway. Unfortunately, we were downwind. We were inundated with smoke and debris falling from the sky. Annie was hit by what looked like a big piece of coconut shell.

Later, I remember watching with our babies. I remember covering their ears, hugging them closely, and watching their eyes wide with wonder at such a glorious sight. I don't remember any of them crying; but, they sure snuggled in close.

Ten years ago, I remember standing in our Pastor's front yard, with tears streaming down my face, as we watched the display from afar. We had been on our way to the park; but, it was excessively hot, I was excessively pregnant, and my mother was at death's door. I had just returned from seeing her. My, how she loved fireworks! She'd spend a fortune to get that display just right. Well, she waited until just after midnight to go home so that she wouldn't spoil the fourth. I'm quite sure she waited. She could have gone on the third, her anniversary. She could have gone on the fourth, a holiday. She could have gone on the sixth, her mom's birthday. She went on the fifth. I just can't help believing that she knew what she was doing.

Tonight, however, was quite memorable also. We spent the evening out in the country with friends at Charlie's Big Red Barn. It was open on both ends; and, the breeze was so nice that it stayed cool. We had a cookout with lots of friends then headed out to the Municipal park. We sat in our usual place at the edge of the golf course. We had all of our friends, Lowell's mother, and all of our little family. The kids played as we were waiting for the sun to set. I told the kids that I wanted them to come on up the hill and sit with us near the van when it got dark. Well it got dark alright. Just moments before the display began, drip-drip. Yes, it was sprinkling. Well, that's okay, we thought. We'll get a little damp. The display was gorgeous. This year they had a new kind of firework that had little white swirly sparkles interspersed with small bursts of purple. I just loved them. That's just about the time that our drips became drops and then, suddenly, a downpour! Boy everyone started to scramble for their cars! We were close; so, we got in and watched most of the rest of the display from the car. It did slow to a sprinkle near the end. So, we got out and watched the finale.

We came home soggy but happy. I have a feeling that this is an Independence Day that we won't forget!

Happy July!
Laura
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May I suggest?
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1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed reading your memories, and I too think your Mom didn't want to spoil the 4th, bless her heart! Glad you made new memories! Our celebration was nice too, I'm still full! lol

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