Discovering The Fourth of July ~ 4th of July
My first Fourth of July party – I remember back in 1998, my best friend, Edward, and his family moved to America. I was heart broken, we’d been best friends since the age of 7 years old and it was like losing a brother. However, the following summer, his family invited me to stay with them at their new house in America. I was 15 years old and could hardly say no.
I arrived in America and met them at the airport, Edward was a little older than me so he was already driving, I was so jealous. We spent all our time riding around America, eating fast food and trying to do as many “American” things as possible. After a week or so, one of Ed’s friends invited us to a Fourth of July party, apparently this was a big deal but we had never heard of it. We didn’t care what this “Independence Day party” was about, we just wanted to go to an American party.
What is Independence Day/4th of July?
We turned up and found hundreds of Americans enjoying a barbecue and taking in the sunshine. American kids were running around and playing in the street, everybody was happy and making the most of “The Fourth of July”. But we were confused. In Britain, the 4th of July is just another day, it holds no special significance.
“OH NO! We were two British boys at a party full of Americans, celebrating their Independence day from our country.”
Our friend at the party, Arien, told us that Independence day celebrates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. Basically, Independence from the United Kingdoms of Great Britain. “OH NO!!” We were two British boys at a party full of Americans, celebrating their Independence day from our country and we felt very self conscious all of a sudden. “Should we leave?” “Should we pretend to be American?”. It was a funny situation, but in general, nobody cared that we were British. It’s basically just a day to have fun, eat good food and watch fireworks. I’ve NEVER seen such an amazing firework display and the image of a dark sky filled with roaring fireworks will stay with me forever. Actually, it’s a little bit like the San Joan celebration in Spain.
So today, The fourth of July, 2011. Pretend you’re American and have a party!