Our new lair sits on the eastern edge of San Jose, about halfway up one of the hills in the Diablo range. Trees and houses and the like obscure the view from most of the lair (other than a very small, very high window in the shower in the master bedroom), but the streets around us offer a perfect vista of the whole of Silicon Valley. On a clear day, you can see right across to the Santa Cruz mountain range and the communities therein.
Last night was a very clear night.
We went over to the parking lot of the local high school -- along with a goodly percentage of the neighborhood, it seems. From there, we could see about half a dozen major fireworks displays from places like Great America, several more smaller displays, and a considerable number of individuals lighting off almost-certainly-unlawful fireworks of their own.
We could see fireworks in the far distance, at least as far as Cupertino and Mountain View.
We actually had a better vantage point than the folks who paid to see the shows -- since, sitting right beneath them, they only got to see one show. We got to see them all.
I've been to big fireworks shows before -- when I was young, that's what we did on the 4th, rather than lighting off our own. This was like nothing I've seen outside the movies. Magnificent.
Patriotic sap that I am, I couldn't help but softly sing "The Star Spangled Banner" to quelonzia.
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there:
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
It's been a long and perilous night, and we still must contend with those who are anything but brave who are determined to insure that we are anything but free... but I think it still does.