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Flags, fireworks, food for the Fourth of July

KATHRYN YARBRO
Guest columnist

Happy Fourth of July. Wave your flag and celebrate one way or another.
Do you like fireworks and hot dogs? Do you like crowds or just a few friends on the front porch?
You can do what you want on this day and the next and the next. That’s what Independence Day is all about.
We take a holiday, or we can work. We can visit with friends or we can hide in the cool house and read whatever we want to.
That’s the freedom that we have. All we have to do is watch those many children and mothers who have no choice in where they live, what they will eat or where they will be next — and then will we know how much to value our freedom.
Parades and fireworks are planned for this afternoon.
We have lost the desire to be among crowds for these events, but are still glad that many show up for the entertainment.
I remember that we always called the Fourth of July a holiday and looked forward to having ice cream during the afternoon. That was when having ice cream was a treat.
We usually had enough children in the backyard to hold our own parade, one round around the house made the shade look better.
Later on, friends gathered with us at the lake for a cookout and then we watched the fireworks across the water.
The holiday was always better when shared with friends. It gets easy to remember the long-ago times when the bigger the crowd, the better the day.
Many of the friends that we celebrated with are no longer with us. Others are dealing with ailments that put us to bed early in the evening. No more long days of standing around to visit, and talking after the fireworks are over.
The city’s spectacular fireworks show always draws a crowd and can be watched best from the stadium, but many watch from parking lots and porches.
Fireworks are always viewed best with a crowd who “ahhs” and “oohs” at the best.
We may roast some ribs to help us remember when food was a big part of the celebration. Or we could just have a hot dog or two and remember when standing over a hot grill was all a part of the Fourth of July.
So after the fireworks are over and the hot dogs are gone, let’s not forget the reason we celebrate and keep waving that flag.
Some things are best remembered.

Kathryn Yarbro is former managing editor of the Lincoln Times-News.

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