4th of July

My father pulled the car along the field and parked on the side of the road. We were on our way home from visiting family friends and it was late, for me, not for him. But Dad wanted to show me something, something I had never seen before. We got out of the car and he put me on his shoulders. We wove our way through the field, through rows and rows of other parked cars, all empty, all dark, just sitting in the field, until we came upon a clearing where hundreds of people were sitting on the grass on blankets. I rode on Dad’s shoulders seven feet in the air and watched other children below me run around with sparklers. Real sparklers. Stars glittered in the sky. People were chatting and happy and seemed to be waiting for something. Dad wasn’t really moving anymore. He was waiting and he told me to wait with him. Suddenly the crowd went silent. A whoosh cut through the air and light exploded in the sky, blotting out the stars beyond. Little speckles of white light fell to the ground and another whoosh went up into the air. A new flash of light and a spray of green flashed across the sky. It was beautiful. ‘What are these?’ I asked as I pointed to the sky. ‘Fireworks’, my Dad replied. ‘Aren’t they wonderful?!’

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