4th july 2010 *california*
Our marathon 5 1/2 week trip to USA/Canada last year coincided with 4th of July weekend and a family wedding in the Monterey Bay area. Call it crazy that I’m only up to posting this part of the holiday now a whole year later, or call it pure genius timing, whatever you wish.
I love events that get people excited, involved and coming together as a community so I was pleased that the day after the wedding was an opportunity to spend more time together and for us to get educated on this American holiday. That’s Halloween and 4th July down. Thanksgiving to go.
The day time photos are from adorable Capitola Beach where my husband and I stayed for four glorious nights. We headed down the bay to the Aptos beach area late afternoon. It was lovely gathering around the fire, trying s’mores (spelling?) and taking photos. There were police bag checks as you headed onto the beach, but apparently the fireworks are dug into the sand the day before so that people can still make their own sparkle shows. There were families with children, teenagers playing volleyball and groups of all demographics. It really was a lovely atmosphere.
While it was thrilling, pretty and celebratory, my senses eventually got so overloaded by the noise of the fireworks and the resulting smoke that filled my eyes. Oh, they were so sore! Then I saw fireworks going horizontal across the beach at head height and a whole group jumping out of the way of their own misfired cracker. That was enough for me. I couldn’t handle the lack of knowledge of my dark, smoky surroundings and would quite possibly never see a rogue firecracker coming towards my face before too late. We departed and whilst thankful for the experience I shed a few tears as we left the beach. It was just too much. I do not cry that easily so it perhaps conveys that this was particularly overwhelming for my senses.
It was such a different notion to see people young and old letting off these fireworks amongst such large crowds on the beach. Surely people must get injured? I would agree that there’s sometimes too much nanny state legislation and monitoring in some parts of society. But for a person with sensory disabilities in a large crowd on a beach with hundreds of fireworks, the concept of boundary lines and operation by professionals only is much more relaxing!
Should we find ourselves in the USA on a future 4th July holiday I would love to genuinely celebrate it again but in a different environment. What other ways do you celebrate the holiday?
I wish all my USA friends and family a happy 4th of July.