Wednesday, July 12, 2006

When I was roughing it the north woods of Minnesota this past week, I saw something that made my heart sing. Although I was hating the rustic cabin with its lack of air conditioning and plotting my escape, I decided to go out and sit in the screened sun porch to watch the fireworks over the lake. As I was waiting for the darkness to descend, I spotted something that got me as excited as I have been in a long time. Fireflies!! Precious little fireflies darting all over in my field of vision. One of them even came close to the screen to blink a special hello just to me. I haven't seen fireflies in decades. I had thought maybe they were extinct or something as a result of our toxic lifestyle. There were only a few, but they were there and seeing them brought me back to the days when I was a little girl waiting outside my grandmother's house on the 4th of July for the annual fireworks show at Roosevelt Park just across the street from where she lived.

We usually had a 4th of July picnic at the state park nearby and ended the day at Grandma's house She would have a smudge pot going to detract mosquitoes and we would run in and out of her house snacking on watermelon and just generally being kids. She was always very tolerant of kids, and we could do pretty much as we pleased at her house. When we were in trouble she would usher us to a big wooden closet with her fur coats hanging inside. It was fun to climb in there and hide from Dad while she worked her magic - calming him down for our eventual return to civilization and his inevitable disciplinary action.

Those miraculous little fireflies made an otherwise dull evening something special for me. Even if I didn't have air conditioning!!