Tuesday, July 2

How times change

Sitting here, trying not to shiver, ignoring the cold that is nibbling at my toes, my eyes stare mindlessly at the blank screen before me. A moment's break in the deluge of firecrackers that surrounds the cool night air provides just enough time for the mind to begin thinking of possible topics.

image by rech
The returning bombardment of explosions blasts away any fragment of thought the silence created.

Thirty five years ago, the first day of July 1978, saw the Northern Territory step up to the plate and begin self government. By all accounts it was a pretty momentous day for Territorians, as three month old child at the time, I can't say it really affected me one way or the other.

What does effect me though, is the fact that thirty five years on it is deemed necessary to celebrate said self government, with the igniting of fireworks. I have never really understood how the two went together. 

Of course as a child I didn't care one way or the other why we got to have a big fire in the driveway and burn a newspaper man once a year I just loved doing it. Cracker night, as it was affectionately known as, was by far one of my most favourite nights of the year.

About a week beforehand we would begin searching for some old clothes to make Guy with. Mum, a proud pom, saw cracker night as a great excuse to educate us on the history and tradition of Guy Fawkes

Again not overly fussed on the hows and whys at the time, just thought it was great mum encouraged us to spend the first week of the school holidays stuffing scrunched up newspaper into old clothes with the anticipation of throwing it all on a big bonfire. And quite frankly what child wouldn't?

Only I am not a child any more and things have more than changed.

For some reason bonfires in your driveway, in suburbia are just not ok. The hardest part of this for me to grasp is that mum hasn't moved.

Then there is the whole cost of literally watching your money go up in smoke. Albeit smoke with very pretty sparkly lights and lots of noise. My parents must have been seriously cashed up to put on some of the displays that they did. Either that or inflation has a lot to answer for.

There is just no feasible way I can justify buying fireworks. No matter how much I may love them. It is just a ridiculous waste of money, not to mention damage to the environment. 

Thankfully there are numerous public displays that tight pursed penny pinchers such as myself can go and watch. Then there are public places where you can just be and happen to see the free show. Just from a slightly different angle and a greater distance. 

This also means less crowds. Which I kinda like a lot. What I didn't like about the lesser crowd though was its percentage of idiots. Because it was not the actual public viewing location, the public is able to light their own firecrackers. Whenever they want. Some may say without thought or consideration to anyone else. 

We didn't witness any serious injury, thankfully. I totally understand how it happens. People are morons and just don't stop and think. We did see a few near misses

The other downside to our choice was getting there a little late. This meant only managing a vantage site from amongst some tress.

Which wasn't actually as bad as what I am making out due to the size of the display. The girls loved every moment of it and were oohhing and aching like they had never seen fireworks before. 

It was a lovely night. We picnicked on egg and bacon pie. Living on the edge I threw in a bit of cheese and freshly chopped spinach with onion and garlic. Total yumminess with quite a bit healthiness as well. Not quite the same as toasting marshmallows over a smouldering Guy though.

Are you a fire cracker fan?

Joining in all the fun


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