The flag flies from my front porch, for the 13th year running. How many Memorial Days & 4ths of July have I started by going out and taking a photo of the flag? A few. I still haven’t painted the front porch, I have most of the old paint scraped off, but not all.
Remembering Independence Days of the 1950s and 1960s in small town America. It was such a big deal. Not just another legal holiday, but a real cause for celebration. We fastened playing cards to the frames of our bicycles with clothespins – they would make a lovely noise as we rode up and down our dead-end street (no one ever wore a helmet, I don’t even think they manufactured them). We would be serenaded by the sounds of fire crackers all day long – in those days, that was considered fun and not a dangerous potential wild fire starter.
We waited with great anticipation for the evening when every car on every street was loaded full with the kids and blankets. Even my dysfunctional family did this! We all drove to the big park and laid our blankets on the grass and waited for it to be dark enough for the fireworks to start. There was a funny kind of intimacy to be laying on a blanket(s) with your family, while other kids and their families were all around you. Some of the kids came in their pajamas! We all oohed and ahed the fireworks above and then packed back up when the show was over and drove home. The next day, the kids would compare notes – which was your favorite?
It’s so different now. But maybe on that little street in Eastern Ohio it is still the same? Except wearing helmets, seat belts, being searched as you enter the park, and worrying about bombs and terrorists…. I don’t know.
I know that for me on this day, I have so much to thank God for. I could say that I don’t know where to start, but I do:
- A new job to start on Monday
- No one has said anything insulting to me for five days now
- My health
- My neighbor’s blood pressure is back down for now
- Sitting with my daughter this morning and looking at old photos
- Great hikes two days running
- Mountain streams
- Friends who enjoy a good lunch on a Wednesday afternoon
- The fact that our waiter had obvious neurological damage probably from drug usage, and still had a job as a waiter at a nice restaurant. We ❤ Steven.
- A nice day with not much to do.
- You see, I don’t want to drive across town to see fireworks with a friend. And I don’t want to go to the picnic of my local AA group. I just wanna chill.
- Thank God for the ability to.