Ours was a surprisingly quiet fall into darkness for a 4th of July. After a pleasant day spent here at the lake with some of my oldest friends and some of my newest friends and an evening spent with more friends in town, that girl and I sat on our back deck and watched stars slowly evolve in the oncoming cool of night. Far behind us, in new subdivisions, along the Causeway, in the East Valley, fireworks popped (muffled by distance) almost continuously.
At one time, I considered fireworks the highlight of 4th of July celebrations. Last night, we didn’t even bother to sit on the other side of the house to watch them. Instead, we sat in our own relative silence watching ripples smear reflections of artificial light on the surface of the lake far below.
I thought to myself: “Happy birthday, America! You’re the best! I have learned to love you the most when you are quiet.”