The Fourth of July is our Independence Day and is a federal holiday. That means the day off from work and time to enjoy family, friends, a lot of flag-waving, picnics and fireworks. Party hearty! Or, as Erma Bombeck put it:
"You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism."
One of the classic events is often an evening performance by the local symphony or orchestra, followed by the fireworks display. One of the more famous ones, often televised, is the Boston Pops Orchestra, composed of some members from the Boston Symphony.
The following pictures were taken in July 2013 as the Boston Pops prepared for their rehearsal on July 3rd. The frightening thing about the thought of people being wanded (oh yeah, a new vocabulary word) and FBI and heavy security for a rehearsal is that it almost seems normal now. Kind of makes you wonder about the meaning of "civilization".
Meanwhile, in Kabul, Afghanistan, a re-enlistment ceremony: