Much as I love the ooh’s and aah’s of a firework display, I have never been able to stop myself imagining that I’m watching a huge bag filled with cash be launched into the sky and then blown up with a bang.
Should fireworks be banned or would that be a terrible shame? I can’t quite make my mind up. The fireworks at my children’s state primary school on Bonfire night have always been splendid, but there remains a lingering feeling that perhaps the money could be better spent on more books, iPads, day trips out, possibly their firework budget might even cover a week long trip to France for the whole class or a bursary, all alternative expenses to the 10 minute luxury of pure joyful explosions.
I know. I’m a curmudgeon. Which is a slight surprise given that 24 years ago I went into labour with my daughter on Bonfire night after being at a firework display. She arrived two weeks early having clearly decided that she was missing out on all that fun. She’s been a party girl ever since and because her birthday is the 6th November, fireworks have always been a feature.
A few nights ago one of my neighbours set off a round of rockets in their garden that lasted 15 minutes. Our cat was outside and as they started, I was frantically trying to find him, running up and down the garden, calling him (pointlessly because he wouldn’t have heard me over the incredible noise), whilst a shower of floating glowing debris rained down around me and all the surrounding gardens. They’re dangerous and animals, as we all know, are truly terrified of fireworks. We should have been given prior warning in order to ensure our pets were inside. For dog owners it’s even worse – they need time to get the earmuffs on the dogs, 0r play the classical music, enclose them somewhere quiet, sit with them, give them drugs….whatever it takes to keep them safe and calm.
It does seem that there’s a sea change of public opinion happening. Do we still want to be allowed to set off our own fireworks or should we all agree to enjoy the bigger, more organised events; the one’s that have Sydney Opera House as a back drop or the New Year’s Eve one’s on the Thames – the occasional public celebration that more of us can enjoy from afar?
Sainsbury’s has just announced it is no longer going to sell fireworks. I wonder if other sellers will follow suit. Why have they stopped? I assume there is a dwindling market for them and they make more money over Halloween these days.
Call me a party pooper, but they make me nervous and they’re a waste of money. Not sure the argument that they’re for children works either, I know a lot of adults who love them more. Kids are generally a bit frightened and given the time of year, quite cold too!