First let me state that I am deeply, passionately patriotic.
I love my country.
Independence Day, however, doesn’t really do it for me.
Parades, eheee, don’t trip my trigger, even though I have memories of my Father heading up the VFW display in his Army uniform. I also have memories playing clarinet and marching with the band in those horrid, hot uniforms with the plastic lined caps or stuffing napkins into chicken wire until my fingers were raw top make parade floats.
What's more, you've seen one parade, you've seen them all.
Every parade features the same entries.
“Beauty” queens giving the elbow, elbow, wrist, wrist wave.
Politicians in convertables.
Fire trucks with hoses to spray the crowd.
Horses crapping in the street to the disgust and delight of young boys.
And for a really good time, everyone chucking salt water taffy to the same young boys with plastic grocery bags poised to collect the loot.
But we went to the parade, anyway. Instead of going to our big city, we drove to the town where DH teaches school. The parade started later in the day and we were able to watch from the lawn of the school, which happened to be in the shade.
We went back to the town for the fireworks display. This time we settled down in the middle of the soccer field. I think we were the only ones there since most folks had staked out a spot by the park ~ the site of the great launching.
We lit some sparklers and smoke bombs then played with light sticks. I found a deal on the skinny little light sticks usually used for bracelets. I bought 50 of them, along with 50 connectors, for three dollars.
When the fireworks started we realized our blanket was not ideally positioned for viewing, so we loaded everything on top of it and dragged it to a better spot. We were able to settle down for about five minutes of fireworks before the whole thing was over.
The traffic jam drive home was complicated by a crew of firemen dousing a lively blaze that had broken out along the side of the road.
We didn’t actually see the fire, except from a distance. When we got to a place where we could turn off we took a back road home.
It was not an earth shattering day of fun, but when I asked the boys what they liked best, DS-12 said he liked that we were able to spend the time together as a family.