Back during my East Coast days, there was a year when a colleague invited me to go to her daughter’s play on the 4th of July. I don’t like doing that sort of thing all the time, but I do enjoy kids’ performances occasionally, so that was fine. The play was around noon, so I figured we’d spend the rest of the day together.

That did not happen. She and her spouse went on to another family-type event, to which I was not invited. Gotta love the presumptuousness in that. It is, as we’ve been discussing at Living Single, so much a part of single life.

With some tweaking, the experience would not have been so bad. If, for example, I were forewarned that I was going to get ditched after the play, I would have been more psychologically prepared for that. I can always find something fun to do on my own on a free day, but I had a different expectation for that day.

One of the things I often like to do is to go for a long walk. On that 4th of July, though, it was sweltering. I headed out for a while, but the bugs and the heat did me in. I also hate being in a place with all the windows and doors closed, but there was no alternative to running the air conditioning in my home that day.

My West Coast life is a big improvement. My friends with kids don’t invite me only to kiddie events. Some fellow escapees from my previous university sometimes host a 4th of July party with a great view of the fireworks. There are only two or three days a year when it is so hot that I would stay inside and turn on the air-conditioning – which is a good thing, since I don’t even have air conditioning.

I realize that my no good, very bad 4th from the past is only no-good in a relative sense. It is small stuff compared to the sorts of things that could go wrong in life. So I’m grateful for that.

Happy 4th to those who celebrate it. Feel free to share your no good, very bad stories (or your wonderful ones) here.

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