I didn’t experience the excess and grandeur of this holiday as a child in the sixties and seventies on my cul-de-sac where neighbor’s activities were known to all. I don’t think any of our working-class adults wanted to encourage incendiaries particularly. Perhaps a family or two would be gone on vacation at that time. Maybe they have sky glittering memories of sweaty feasts I never would have imagined.
But, now, New Years was indeed the time for fireworks–not too many, mind you. At the stroke of midnight, the father of the household next door would hurl the lovely colors into the chilly air, calling “Happy New Year” for about five minutes. It was delightful.
I live in muggy Alabama. I consider the proliferation of fireworks I’ve seen over the years a scourge of diminished sensibilities. That smog is not beautiful. It makes some people sick. Looking back, I have fond memories of not feeling compelled to “enjoy” that on a hot summer night.