When you really think about it, the fourth of July isn't that safe. Crazy drunk men are essential for any holiday, and are only slightly dangerous but nothing out of the ordinary. There’s a line you begin to cross when you decide to give the drunk men fireworks.
In the seventh grade my parents decided that we should do something different, because “change is good”. I would have been perfectly fine if we did the same thing as every year, gone down the street to our neighbors cookout, play games with the neighborhood kids, and beg for a sleepover despite living four houses down from one another. This year we drove to New Hampshire. We were headed to my moms gay friend and his husbands house. I would be spending my fourth of July with several gay men and elderly people, I was rather displeased. Upon arrival we were greeted by two incredibly sweet men, Jason and Tom. There were several old people there but they were adorably festive, wearing beads and completely decked out in red white and blue party hats. They also kept giving me and my brothers cake even when my mom had said we'd had enough.
If asked, what one word describes the Fourth of July the most? I think nearly every person in the room would say fireworks, it's a given. So, we had finally gotten to the main part of the day. All the kids, myself included, were running around screaming and trying to make shapes or spell out our names in cursive with the sparklers. Now the adults started putting out some fireworks. Even though fireworks were still illegal in New Hampshire at the time no one cared, we were in the middle of nowhere and their closest neighbors was a cow pasture. Everyone stopped what they were doing because one of the fireworks went off unexpectedly but that was just the tester Jason told us. Everyone started to gather around to watch because we all knew they would be going off soon. I was beyond excited, we were so close to them! I had never been this close to the fireworks before. My sister was still young and had me cover her ears as they began going off. I stood with my oldest brother Carmine to my left, my little sister Grace to my right and some really cute elderly lady name Eileen behind me in a wheelchair that kept asking me to get her food because she mistook me for her granddaughter. My sister asked if I could stop holding her ears just then because she wanted to be a big kid she informed me. I held her hand instead while we stood there. All of the sudden smoke started coming from where the fireworks had been going off and we heard this nearly earsplitting screech of the sound a firework makes usually when it’s already up in the air. But no, this firework was not going into the air. It actually was coming right towards me. When the firework hit me in the stomach I turned slightly to my right making it change directions.. and explode directly onto my brothers foot. Carmine actually did not notice at all that his foot was on fire because something much worse had happened. My poor brother was wearing shorts and half of the firework had gone up them. He could not even comprehend at that moment that his foot was on fire due to the fact the only thing he really cared about was on fire too.
Everyone was frantic! I was still holding onto my sisters hand and ran her into the garage where the smoke had not yet entered. The ringing in my ears was ridiculous but through the chaos I heard my father screaming “CARMINE YOUR FOOT” and my brother screaming even louder back “ NO DAD. MY BALLS.” They continued to scream back and forth like this because Carmine had been slightly preoccupied. Until he finally decided to acknowledge the fire on his foot did they stop screaming. I bet you never thought the stop drop and roll would ever become relevant.
Anyways, after the smoke had cleared my little friend Eileen was left with a big burn on her arm, my little sister was balling, I had been given a baseball sized bruise on my stomach and my brother needed to be taken to the hospital. After settling everyone down Rob has an excellent idea! Lets keep using the fireworks! My mother was not happy, she does not swear a lot but jeez she had a lot to say right then. We left for the hospital and my dad kept making jokes like “Damn, Meaghan must have some rock hard abs for fireworks to be bouncing off of them!” My mom was definitely not amused but she is the one who told us change is good, so thanks mom.
Meaghan Donahue '17