This is how it feels on a humid summer day, the fourth of July, when everyone’s waiting for the fireworks to go off and everything is chaos.
We always sit on the outskirts of where everyone is, so some of the parents take the older kids through the square – there’s a big line of us trailing along, and I’m never quite sure if we have everybody or if somebody got lost in the crowd of people.
Everything is exciting here. There’s a band playing live music, and I see myself on the big screens. You can hardly see the concrete for the people and their possessions – blankets and fold-up chairs are everywhere, and people swarm like bees.
If I had a moment I’d reach for my journal and write down all of this, but for now I file everything away in my head.
I want to write down descriptions of every person I pass. Everyone here is different, and they’re all so interesting.
A little girl in overall shorts with a wreath of flowers in her blond hair runs by. Two kids, a boy with braces and an Asian girl are hugging. People that I don’t know but could easily be friends with pass by me – I’ll probably never see them again. It seems like every few steps somebody recognizes someone they know.
It’s starting to rain, and the smart people who brought umbrellas reach for them. It’s a sea of umbrellas – you can hardly see the people. The rest run for shelter under store awnings. I get drenched, and I’m laughing even though my brand new sandals are wet.
We make our way back, and by the time we take shelter the rain has stopped. A rainbow appears through the clouds.
Then there’s homemade ice cream and cake and chocolate chips, and Polaroid pictures, and glowsticks.
Finally it’s dark, and the fireworks begin. I strain to hear what music they’re playing in the square, but it’s ok because I’m probably not missing much. And after the grand finale, we walk back to our cars and go home, sweaty and hot and maybe a little damp but happy.
When I crawl into my bed, I can still hear fireworks into the night.
Hey. Hope your summer is going wonderfully. Eat lots of ice cream, and read lots of books, and do things that you’ll be happy you did later. Love you all.
*Photo credit to Mom 😊*