Get a head start on 2009 – Sydney, Australia


I admit it. I love fireworks.

The very first fireworks display I went to was during the very first Barnum Festival in Bridgeport, Connecticut. WW2 was 3 years over. There had been no such displays in town during the war.

And no one was around who had put on large-scale fireworks displays from before the war. So, when everything went off – especially the mass display at the very end – the thousands of watchers who had gathered at Seaside Park to watch the fireworks launched from the beach became the targets of the falling embers and hot debris blown inland by the onshore breezes.

Pretty scary.

Later, many decades later, I learned how much Boston loves their fireworks – during many First Night celebrations in Beantown. I’d stash my car on the top of a parking garage near the harbor. The midnight display celebrating the New Year always was fabulous – and the traffic horrendous. Boston’s street system is nothing more than 17th-Century cowpaths paved over.

After wandering through First Night displays, exhibits and events, my friends and I would rendezvous at my car. Revel in the fireworks display. Then, tuck into an enormous potluck picnic – outside if it was a temperate evening – inside a couple of cars parked side-by-side if it was freezing. We wouldn’t try to drive home till the streets had mostly emptied out.

I love fireworks.

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