It was the Fourth of July in New York City. I was moping around my room and pissed that I didn’t have plans and that I wasn’t with my boyfriend, so I just decided to sleep.
I was on the second hour of my nap when my roommates came back to our dorm room. I pretended I was still asleep as they debated waking me up to go see the fireworks out on the Hudson River. I didn’t want to get up, so I secretly hoped they didn’t wake me up.
But they did. Tien jumped on me and started rolling all over me. She wasn’t holding back. I like that about her. At the time though, I wasn’t pleased and just groaned and told her to get off me.
They pleaded for me to join them, but I remained stubborn and plopped my pillow over my head.
Tien and Elma left, and I pulled out my laptop to mosey around the web. Then I heard the fireworks. Boom boom! I looked out the window but couldn’t see anything.
Something inside me thrusted the unhappiness out and gave me a sense of excitement and adventure. I laced up my running shoes and took the elevator down 10 floors. I jogged to Washington Square Park, where I could see bits of sparks above the trees. I sat down on a stone bench, hoping to see more, but the view was rather limited. The temperature was above 80 degrees, even though the sun wasn’t out anymore. The benches were warm. They usually were.
I didn’t want to sit there, listening. I wanted to see the display.
I ran up Fifth Ave, and then across to Sixth Ave, then 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th. My legs moved fast as I stepped off sidewalks, lept around dog-walkers and cut off taxis. I ran west to the Hudson until I was halted by a huge mass of people. I stood under High Line Park as I watched the firework finale blasted from barges on the river.
It was so thrilling and extraordinary and beautiful. They were the biggest and greatest fireworks I’ve ever seen.
The show was over almost as soon as I got there. So a few minutes later, I turned around, dodged around the herd and ran back to my dorm on Broadway and 10th Street. I was pretty sweaty, so I took a relaxing bath and then crawled back into bed.
My roommates showed up an hour later. They had taken a cab.
“How were the fireworks?” I asked them.
“Awesome!” they said. “You should’ve gone.”
“I wish I would’ve,” I said, and smiled as I fell asleep.