The Morning After

Pile of fireworks trash on July 5.
Morning of July 5

How was your holiday? I hope you enjoyed it. Even with our nation’s unrest and the pandemic, we had a most enjoyable day.

First, we went to a parade. Our community, New Town at St. Charles, has a 4th of July parade every year. The parade was held this year despite the pandemic. The parade largely consisted of decorated golf carts, some jeeps, and a number of people walking. Normally, there are floats made by New Town businesses, but these were absent this year. I am sure it was because of social distancing regulations. We watched the parade from our usual spot while mostly social distancing.

New Town 4th of July Parade

Our Nice Neighbors

We saw a number of our neighbors at the parade, including our wonderful next door neighbors. Their plan for the afternoon consisted of doing paint by number pictures which had been purchased on Amazon. Each of the four had a different scene, and they talked about how intricate their work would be. The day was very, very hot. What a perfect indoor activity! In this time of a pandemic – or on these hot, hot, hot days, it’s wonderful to focus on what can be done – and to think beyond the usual.

For my part, I went to the pool here in New Town. Dan wanted to stay out of the heat and at home in the AC. Despite the heat, I rode my bike to the pool. It’s only about a mile, and the route is flat. Our pool is open with limitations. No guests, no food sold and there is a limit on how many are allowed. I spent about 2 hours there enjoying the lazy river as well as moving about in the bigger pool which, in my mind, I loosely framed as exercise. It was wonderful and quite refreshing. How lucky I am to live in a place where I can ride my bike to a community pool.

After dinner, we went to the traditional New Town concert featuring “Double D.” This was held in the amphitheater, and you can bet we were right on time.

Stage with "Double D"
Double D

These two were previous New Town residents, but they moved away last year. We can’t help but forgive them for leaving the tribe; they are so nice. And we greatly enjoy their music. Besides which, Dan pestered them for about 3 years (we would pass them often on our daily walks), and they finally learned the song, “Cracklin’ Rosie” for him. They also play another one of Dan’s favorite, “Sweet Caroline.” So good! So good!

New Town concerts are outside with many families attending. Denise (one of the Double D’s) gives out blow up toys to all the kids. These include blow up microphones, soccer balls, and the ever popular – guitars. She’ll have kids come on stage to play air guitar and even shake some tambourines.

Man wearing USA socks
No, these are not my legs!

Also at the concert, we saw our neighbors and asked about their paint by number project. Turns out they spent hours and only made a small amount of progress. A few of them, who will remain nameless, gave up and took a nap. I am sure they will persist, and it will be very fun when their pictures are completed. Our whole evening was really fun, too. I even spotted some “Man Socks“!

Our holiday ended with the traditional fireworks, again here in New Town. Dan and I walked about 6 blocks over to an area where homes are not built yet. New Town takes up a collection with residents and businesses pitching in for the fireworks. It was a great show, especially the finale. Dan and I like to say we bought the prettiest one. 🙂

I know how lucky I am to live where I do and enjoy all that it has to offer. While grateful, I don’t turn a blind eye to the world around me. I think about the current state of our country, and I hope my country will come through it all and be better because of it. I think about the pandemic and want to focus on what I can do rather than all I cannot. And, for my readers who are not from the U.S., please know, in my book, love and kindness do not stop at the border. I am glad you are here, and I want to learn about your life, too.

Whatever your country, I hope you can celebrate a life with love, hope, gratitude, kindness and opportunity. That, my friend, is a real Independence Day.

US flag
God Bless America


  1. Sounds like you had a wonderful holiday, Betty. I also feel for those affected by the pandemic, the racial tensions, and the difficult economy right now but I am so happy to hear the good stories that people share! I think they give everyone hope.

    Liked by 1 person

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