July 4th

The Fourth of July was always a coveted day that I looked forward to as a little girl.  Being that I had no concept of time, it usually snuck up on me.  Every year my family would join our neighbors from across the street in an all-day pool party followed by an evening of fireworks.

I remember crossing the street multiple times throughout the day, usually soaking wet from playing water games.  There was always some reason that would merit going back to my own house.  The trek was a great challenge as I often set out without shoes.  The hot pavement and cinders forced me to be lightening-fast.

All day I would munch on chips, reaching into the bowl with raisinie chlorine-soaked hands.  Chris, Kara and I would play marco-polo and I would pretend I could swim as fast as a dolphin.

Come night-fall the two families would launch illegal fireworks from the driveway.  It was also an annual tradition to purchase said fireworks before crossing back into Illinois after the Missouri canoe trip.  I would plug my ears at the loud booms and attempt to light snakes between launches.  The snakes left marks on the driveway that are probably still there.  Some of the fireworks were worth the money we paid.  Some were lame.  Duds.  But it was about the experience.  Not the cost.

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