At the old folks home, we voted to have our fireworks at eight PM. They were afraid that the olf folks wouldn't stay up until dark at nine PM. Actually that was a compromise. They proposed six, and I proposed nine, and we compromised at eight. That is not really a compromise, because it is still daylight at eight. Even then the caregivers fudged and started lighting them off at 7:45.
It was all right though. Fireworks nowadays are spectacular. They burn long and bright and leap and flash and bang and whstle. They cast out sparkles of green, gold, red, and blue. I was impressed, daylight or no, because I was raised on roman candles that you had to shake, sometimes exploded in your hand, and fizzled out after eight shots at most. Anyway, it all worked out.
Something about the summer weather fries the brains makes it seem all right to do weird things with fire works. Like Roman Candles. It says right on the candle DO NOT HOLD IN HAND. Do you know anyone who shoots a roman candle in any other way? What could that be? Stuck in the ground? Held in the teeth? My Uncle Kenneth had one explode just beneath the spot he was gripping. He was lucky, he did not lose any fingers. Did he light another right away? Of course, the summer weather had fried his brain too.
The summer weather fried the brain of the Santa Monica, CA, City Council too. About twenty years ago, they decided that the fireworks on the pier caused too much traffic and was a hazard to the city. How did they solve this problem? They scheduled the fireworks for five AM. At least that was before daylight. They "reasoned" that fewer people would come at five am, and therefore there would not be a traffic jam. It may have worked. My friends and I solved the traffic jam problem another way.
We spent the evening before the fourth on my cabin cruiser at Marina del Rey. We partied and laughed and joked and visited from boat to boat. At one am we cast off and cruised along the shore to Santa Monica. The night was beautiful and guests asked me about one particularly bright star. I got to show off my astronomical knowledge that night. It happened, that on that particular night, due to some combination of circumstances of luminosity, and nearness, Mars was the brightest that it would appear during our life time and several lifetimes to come. I pointed that out, and I got the credit for producing a gorgeous star for their entertainment.
We got to Santa Monica and shut off the engine and drifted. There was sort of a traffic jam there in the ocean, but that was no concern of the city council. The fireworks went off on schedule and were beautiful. After the fireworks we motored home in the dawn. We docked and went home to bed.
I love the fourth of July.