There’s a glow of light
The St. Jimmy is the spark in the night
Bearing gifts and trust
The fixture in the city of lust
Fourth of July is always going to be one of the best holidays. It involves some of the best things this world has ever created:
This one was kind of new for me. I honestly have no idea what I did last year for the 4th… maybe I can look it up later? Not that important for this years. The big event for me was convincing myself to [yet again] ditch my little corner and try and break out and make some space. This time it was seeing a friend,
D, who I hadn’t talked to in about three years. We interned together quite a few summers ago, and that was basically our last interaction. Sure there were a couple messages, a couple texts, but nothing serious. Huge bummer, because we had an awesome time that summer.
Once we had both realized we were in the Bay Area, something had to happen right?
D had invited me a few times to his barbecue’s, but for one reason or the other I couldn’t make it. I should note -
D is not some person who likes to grill.
D is certified Kansas City Barbecue Judge and treats it like the art and science it deserves to be. When they’re cooking a shoulder or brisket, they are watching that thing tenderly for 12 hours with no breaks.
D was having another BBQ this 4th. Was it far away for me? Kinda, basically the max Caltrain trip both ways (so like 3hrs round trip). Also I knew literally no one else there, so it was more of a double yolo on this. You, dear reader, probably know where this is going, since it’s been a rather consistent theme of my blog at this point1. I went, I dined like a king, I met so many cool new people, I drank a lot, I chilled in a pool. Life was great. To be clear, the point is not to brag about how much fun I had2. Instead, it’s to point out (for myself and for you dear reader) that just rolling the dice3 is worth it.
But that’s only the half of it! After taking a long train ride back, I got to experience one of the best fireworks experiences ever. There was a small section in the middle where I hi/bye’d some other friends because they were not interested in fireworks (Sad!). The conclusion of that was I had to run about a half mile straight uphill to get the best view of the fireworks. Without a doubt, it was worth it. Even while just running through the streets, you could see people were loving it. They threw out Roman Candles, bottle rockets, sparklers, and even real fireworks out on the street. You couldn’t go a block without seeing something explode and pop off. It was even more exciting than that, since at the ground level, you could hear explosions everywhere but only see your block’s worth. What lay behind the next block? What beautiful, mesmerizing colorful explosion was going to come next?
But that was just the intro! After climbing up the massive hill, the insanity really unfolded. It became clear that no, it was not a couple people popping them off in the streets. The entire Bay Area was exploding in color and sound and crash bang boom voila.
I LOVED IT.
Let me try and explain with a little more detail. From my viewpoint, I could see almost all of eastern SF. I could see out to the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges. To the east you could see Oakland a little bit, Alameda, San Leandro, etc. Turning around you could look out and see Daly City, and maybe South SF4. In each and everyone of those areas, fireworks were popping up constantly. I felt like I was inside a microwave when the popcorn starts going off, but it went on for well over an hour. While sure, there was “the show” out on the bridge, that felt almost minor? There were some many explosions everywhere.
Let’s talk about the hill itself too. It was slightly freezing, oh well, that’s SF. I was too convered in sweat (from running) and pool water (from the party) to care about that. Everyone is up there ooh-ing and aah-ing, but they’re doing so much more. They’re kissing and hugging and singing. Major shoutout to the awful group of teenagers pissing everyone off with their terrible David Bowie covers. Power to you, Space Oddity literally always works, who cares about the haters. Parents yelling, kids screaming, and just everywhere, color. It’s actually still going on as I write this another hour later, but more subdued. Love it.