I have yet to listen to this song without a tiny welling of tears.
This 4th of July has me feeling particularly nostalgic. Something has compelled me toward google maps: looking up satellite pictures of St. Fridolin's cemetery in Champlin, Minnesota and our 2.5 acres in tiny Dayton. That sandbur infested yard with its strawberry plants, firepit and our family of seven ('such a lucky number. makes me feel like HEAVEN!'). Maybe it's because I've had 'American Pie' on repeat for the last 24 hours but in spite of all the 4th's I've celebrated since the summer after 3rd grade, the few we got to spend with my dad have been running through my mind all day.
A lot has changed since the muggy July's in Minnesota and this year my family is sprawled across the country and the globe (Napa Valley, Bangkok, Barcelona...) We're not driving to St. Peter for the parade or giving the Dayton PD an illegal fireworks show and even though the watermelon is just as sweet, and seedless to boot, and the snap-dragons are still blooming and snapping and nodding in the sun, this 4th of July is dedicated to summers past and, more importantly, my dad.
My dad who was on the dating game, whistled along to the hymns at church and rode a LeMond.
My dad who proposed to my mom in a canoe.
So Happy 4th of July to families big and small, scattered and gathered. And cheers to 4th of July traditions that endure through wet climates and dry climates and state borders and births and deaths.