We usually spent the 4th of July on our farm in Maine. Both my parents were World War II veterans, and our barn was painted to show my parents’ pride in their country.
The show hadn’t been 100% intentional. We ran out of white paint and the hardware store was forty-five minutes away. Mama’s impatience couldn’t wait to have the house and barn painting project finished.
“This way we’ll have a head-start on decorating for the 4th!”
Mama loved celebrating any holiday and life milestone, but she really loved a parade. The vintage cars – “We had one like that!”, the marching bands, “Think of the coordination it takes!”, the homemade floats, “I don’t know if that one will last to the end – let’s follow it to see!”
Wisely, she did not care for clowns. During one parade, she left our standard poodle, Millie, and a still in diapers me alone on the curb in front of her parent’s house and a cavorting clown swung toward me, he quickly swung to the other side of the street when snarling Millie leaped in front of a growling me.
When I was a young teenager, I was asked to ride in the 4th of July parade. It was exciting in at least four different ways: I got to ride the cutest pony in town, the cute pony was owned by a cute boy, I was near the front of the parade, and mama was, as always, cheering me on.