The good people of my neighborhood are very patriotic, they are. They have been celebrating the fourth of July with gusto for a week now, and we’re still one day away from the anniversary of our nation’s independence. Last week, we started noticing the fireworks — it was a bit unnerving at first, as fireworks sound an awful lot like gunfire. But then there were just too dern many of them. And they often have the gleeful, reassuring pop at the end. It seems that fireworks would be illegal in DC, but I suppose the patriotism of the people just cannot be stopped!! Last Friday, June 29, the drunken gang who hangs out in front of the abandoned building one block over greeted me, “Happy Fourth, baby. Happy Fourth.” I wanted to reply, “It’s still JUNE!” but I just smiled and laughed.

Perhaps our forefathers would be proud.

Where liberty dwells, there is my country. ~Benjamin Franklin