Happy belated Fourth of July everyone!
Last night, I was invited to a celebration of epic proportions. And I do mean Epic. So sit back, relax, and prepare yourself for an adventure.... it's story time!
The thick blanket of mosquitoes choked off my resolve as we approached the old house. The sooner I made my way into the country abode, the better. Even Sean was hurrying to roll up the windows of the Chevelle, eager to be free of the insect canopy.
Three over sized cans of repellent balanced precariously on the edge of the recycle bins, as I reached impatiently for the front door. With a sluggish crack, the heavy door swung open, and I entered the quaint country house; not sparing a glance behind me in search of Sean.
The sounds of laughter, and free flowing wine, beckoned me towards the waiting crowd. I fixed a smile upon my pale face, as the formal introductions were made. Our host for the evening, Gino, had provided us with the most festive of feasts imaginable. Being that he is Italian, we were all in awe at the bevy of delicious treats that awaited us.
I settled in at once, nibbling on pasta and potatoes, before resigning myself to the recliner.
"You have to try my chicken, it's organic." Gino said, sipping on his wine.
I chuckled, and smiled politely at his request, but made no further attempt at engorging myself. I don't have anything against organic chicken - I quite like it actually - I just wasn't hungry. Sean helped himself to an array of rich food, before stumbling off into the living room.
The charming country house was an exceptionally comforting environment, compared to what waited each of us once we began our trek into the elements for the inevitable fireworks show. Geno motioned to the window that overlooked the enormous wooded yard. Apprehensively, I glanced through the lead pane, and gasped.
Two large torches lit the field where several unknown visitors were setting up for the festivities. The glowing embers of a massive bonfire echoed off the adjacent trees, sending flickers of ash into the night sky. And there, upon the ground, sat the biggest display of fireworks I have ever laid my eyes on (at least at someones home). Gino had definitely outdone himself this year.
Through the muggy haze, and clouds of mosquitoes, I could barely make out the shilouettes of the small chairs that circled around the firework display. It was then that I started to have serious doubts about our safety.
Dusk gave way to darkness, as I threw on my white cardigan, and sighed. I couldn't avoid this for too much longer. The door opened, and we all sauntered out into the evening. Immediately, we were ambushed by tiny flying insects that apparently have no fear of losing their own life. I frantically scrambled for the nearest can of repellent, and did my best to breathe as I plastered myself.
We made our way to the top of a small hill, overlooking the three excited pyrotechnics, and sat down upon the damp grass. I was all set for a great show, as promised. Gino did not disappoint. For fifteen minutes we were showered with unbelievable rays of light, and sonic booms. They gave most city fireworks a run for their money.
In my hasty attempt to snap photographs, I'd completely forgotten that I had the ability to record this peculiar phenomenon. There was only a few minutes left, and most of the enormous fireworks had already exploded overhead, but I had to give it a chance.
That is when disaster struck.
I had been so preoccupied with everyone else's safety, that I neglected my own. Suddenly, I was writhing in pain on the ground, as discards of ash plummeted down around me. It took all of two seconds to realize I couldn't see. Instinctively, I grasped my right eye, and despite my inner turmoil, I continued to "roll camera".
There was something gnawing, and scratching at my eye. My silent endurance was more than I could take. However, ruining this moment for everyone was out of the question. So, I waited. Waited. And waited some more; one hand clasped over my eye as tears streamed down my cheek.
As soon as the applause started to reverberate around me, I took off into the old, white house; Sean reluctantly on my tail. Sure enough, swollen eye, red as blood. The next thing I know, there's talk of Emergency rooms. That was not an option for me. I don't do hospitals. I may be the most accident prone person on the planet, but I can take care of myself.
So a night that began with anticipation, and wonder, turned into a battle for my eyesight. I am pleased to report that everything is fine today.
I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July! It wouldn't be a great holiday in my family, if someone didn't end up in the emergency room. Thankfully, this year, I avoided it.
Here's a look at some of the fireworks I was able to capture on film. I can't believe it never dawned on me to start recording it earlier. There were some incredible, beautiful, ones before I gathered my wits.
AMAZING JOB GINO! THANKS SO MUCH!