I was something in the 60s but now I'm just sixty something.

A “SLO” 4th

Hey there folks! Happy Independence Day! Hope it’s a great day for you!

What? You expected horses? Or maybe an elephant?

Sorry about the confusion from the old post from Coronado. I was trying to limit it to FB just for the old pictures. I was reminiscing on how much fun we always had there on the 4th. I always miss Coronado at this time of year.

WordPress updates faster than I write and my widgets are out of whack among other things. I was having great difficulty and spewing many ugly words trying to post those pictures. I accidentally republished the entire blog entry with no explanation of it being a repost. So, if you are a “follower” it found it’s way to your mailbox. So here is my disclaimer: No, I am not in Coronado and the Big Bang Bust in San Diego was in 2012. I understand though that Fort Mill, SC had a fireworks mishap this year. Bound to happen somewhere. The only California debacle so far this year for the 4th was an earthquake. I didn’t feel it. Maybe if I hadn’t been out eating and drinking and laughing so hard with some new friends I might have. It was pretty big. It’s not dark here yet on the west coast though so there is time left for some other fiasco.

It’s hard to believe it has been 7 years since that last 4th of July post. We left San Diego because of the crowds, the traffic and the taxes. And here we are newly back in California on the SLOcoast (so called for San Luis Obispo and the fact that life is a lot slower here). It is a whole different California here except for the taxes. Drive out of our neighborhood and you are in the midst of strawberry fields, flower fields, vineyards, goats, cows, and horses. And newly repurposed farmland growing the latest cash crop. Yep, pot fields. And you know what the Eagles say about the Hotel California? “You can check out but you can never leave.” And thus, here we are again for the third time.

Original owner?

It is much more peaceful here and life is easy. On the other hand, we don’t have these great 4th of July events that draw in 100,000 people. We have a neighborhood parade that has more participants than spectators. Which is still fun. And much more the norm. Here’s how we do it in SLO County.

My neighbors!
Kazoo Bee Doo Bee Doo! The only band available.

There are fireworks tonight down at Pismo Beach. But it’s a crap shoot which will come first. Could be the fireworks or could be the fog. I’m opting for bed. We have already been out twice this week and we are going out again tomorrow. I am having trouble keeping up this SLO pace. Who knew there were so many party animals in these retirement communities?


Oh Me, Oh My, What a 4th of July!

Does your town do this?

A funny thing happened on the way to the San Diego Big Bay Boom fireworks on the 4th of July. They all went off at once five minutes before the scheduled beginning of the show. The newspapers referred to this as “premature ignition”. I’m not sure how the pyrotechnician feels about this term. Sounds to me like he has a problem and now the whole world knows about it.

Much can go wrong in a day and it can still remain near perfect. Independence Day in Coronado is like that. It’s a day out of a Normal Rockwell painting. Being a Navy town, it’s celebrated with extreme enthusiasm and nothing can really spoil it. The locals decorate more for the 4th than for Christmas and dress proudly (and often outlandishly) in red, white, and blue. Thousands of people cross the bridge to Coronado to participate in the festivities. We invited eight people and a couple of Chihuahuas to add to the fun and moved our cars to the street to reserve parking spaces.

Just for the record, it does rain in California. It rained on our parade. But not enough to dampen the town’s spirit. We still had our bands, horses, canine companions, and lots of military out marching in full regalia. And we had the garbage truck. I’m not sure I get the garbage truck being in the parade but it did have a great big American flag draped across the front. I wondered if it was just trying to get to the other end of town to pick up the dumpsters. You know, “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em”. Traffic can be a problem here .

Leave the car at home.

I’ve already made plans to make the 4th better next year. I think we should cook dinner instead of lunch so we won’t be in a food coma and miss the afternoon concert. I’ll make more deviled eggs and fewer ribs. I’ll do the “bike around the island” or the fun run or something that doesn’t involve eating and drinking. (Although I suspect some of those bikers had knocked back a few,) And I’m counting on San Diego to get it right with the fireworks.

In the end though, it won’t matter what I do. It will be a great day regardless. It isn’t about the parade, fireworks, or food. It isn’t even about the company. It’s about celebrating the privilege of living in America.

How did you wave your flag?

Sempir fi!

Pearl Harbor survivor and parade official.