As many of you know, Bo loves fireworks. The first time I went with him was on our honeymoon when we sat on a hill in the Poconos and watched fireworks in the distance. Since then we’ve rarely missed them – in Philadelphia, DC, Baltimore, Haddonfield, New York, Newport, wherever we’ve happened to be; even went to the amazing competition in Montreal last year. And, of course, Paris.
So New Year’s Eve was fireworks time. They were scheduled for 9 pm at Haddonfield’s First Night celebration and at midnight on the Delaware River between Philadelphia and Camden.
At seven my friend Michelle came to spend the evening with us. We had some hors d’oeurves while Bo was at his computer game (Bookworm) at the kitchen table. Then he quit his game and went to take a nap. At 8:15 I went upstairs to get him so we could leave for the first fireworks.
“I’m not going. My stomach’s gurgling and something’s wrong. I have to stay here.”
“ Does it hurt? Do you feel nauseous?”
“No. I don’t know. Maybe.”
I’ve heard this before, so I tried to talk him out of it, but he refused. I wrote where we were going on the kitchen table whiteboard and Michelle and I left for the Haddonfield fireworks without him.
We returned an hour later to find Bo in the kitchen at his computer, eating ice cream. He was in a good mood, commented that the fireworks must have been rather short, and I knew he didn’t even remember the stomach incident.
Bo actually stayed up with us, eager to watch the midnight fireworks over the Delaware River (“but you have to drive.”) As we were getting close to the riverside parking lot, a spot where we’ve watched many Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve fireworks, Bo asked several times where the fireworks would be shot from. This was a question that he always knew the answer to; he would walk to the water’s edge to spot the barges.
This year’s fireworks were shorter than usual because they were divided into two shows (the first at 6 pm) and as I drove out of the city in the bumper-to-bumper traffic, Bo commented 6 or 7 times about them being shorter. Each time I explained why. There would be silence in the car and then he’d make the same comment again.
Interestingly, on New Year’s Day when Vlad called to ask about our evening, Bo explained to him that the fireworks had been shorter than other times and why. One of my explanations on the ride home had stuck with him.