Wednesday, July 8, 2009

4th memories

When I was a little kid, my first best friend's family (her name was Kelly - I use it only because there were a gazillion Kelly's in born in the 70's and 80's and no one, sans my parents, that I know now knows her) used to go to the beach every year for the beach fireworks which were always awesome and magical and fun.

When Kelly and her family moved away we stopped going to the beach. I don't remember what we did those first few years, but eventually my dad and I made a tradition of buying those big packs of amateur "fireworks" (they didn't shoot into the sky, but they had bright lights and pretty colors and funny noises) and we'd light them out in the street in front of our house. Sometimes my neighbor kids would come over and join us, sometimes my childhood best friend would come over, but usually it was just dad and me and my mom would pop in and out while she watched the fireworks show they did in D.C. on TV.

I don't have a lot of great memories of my dad when I was a kid. He didn't really know how to relate to me once I was passed the age of cuddling with him after bath time and throwing a ball as high as the roof was amazing. He really had little to do with me until I was 15 or 16, even though we lived in the same house and saw each other (at least in passing) daily. My dad was a workaholic. He owned his own business and he was really into it, so he was always there, even on Sundays when it wasn't open.

But these memories were really great. We'd pick out the package together, trying to find a balance between price and fun. We'd light them together and then talk about which ones were our favorites afterwards.

I do remember the year we stopped. I had a couple of friends over for the afternoon/evening. (Incidentally, one of them was the man who 10 years later became my husband) This was one of the first times I'd entertained boys at home and my current crush was there and we were sitting close on the couch and holding hands. I never got up to tell my dad that it was time. The next morning, I remember seeing a look of disappointment on my dad's face when he looked over at the unused fireworks kit.

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