Independence Day weekend started a day early for us with swimming at a friend’s neighborhood pool on Friday. Then it was off to ‘Rock the Docks’ at the Springfield Marina: Beer. Bounce-house. Bands. We came for the ambiance (which was considerable) and stayed for the fireworks. With all manner of midwesterners from all walks of life, ‘Rock the Docks’ made for good fun and fine people watching.
The band, Hairbangers’ Ball were very good with the 80s rock. The bounce-house was reasonably orderly. The beer was only slightly over-priced. One negative here: it took us 45 minutes (no exaggeration) to get out of the parking lot and people were cursing and acting like idiots when we finally started moving.
What struck me was the musical mashup during the fireworks. Sousa, Mellencamp, Lee Greenwood, Jimi Hendrix. Loverboy, Ray Charles… It was something.
Saturday: another fine American tradition: helping out family. In this case it was a trailer-load of stuff unloaded for my brother, who is in the middle of relocating to the fine river-town of Ottawa.
Sunday: Illinois boating at its finest. Lake Shelbyville was crowded, but we found a decent spot for swimming and fishing (even though we didn’t catch any) at a cove north of the coalshaft bridge. Mom kept her winning streak with the boat alive: the battery ran down somehow and we had to call for assistance. The kids had a blast and no injuries while inner-tubing. The wife wore the star-spangled bikini. Life is good.
Last night we took in Super 8 by J.J. Abrams, a very good movie that was part Close Encounters, part Goonies, and very fun viewing. It’s a beautifully filmed show, set in about 1979 in a Ohio small steel town with plenty of detail and nostalgia. The main characters are a crew of 14-15 year old wannabe filmmakers, who accidentally witness a highly suspicious train wreck. The show is heavily Speilbergian (he executive produced), so it’s a bit maudlin and predictable, but certainly worth watching.
The 4th is looking a little more laid back. Some lazy time around the house with a good book. A cookout with friends. And we ask you: ain’t that America?