The Worst/Best Fourth of July EVER

C and I went down to my parents’ condo in Florida for Fourth of July. Everyone thought we were insane for going to Florida in July, but with an ocean breeze it actually ended up being perfect. Plus, this was what I saw when I stood on the porch:

Nice, right? So we had this great Fourth of July plan. We were going to drive half an hour or so to the neighboring town. My parents bought us tickets to a little VIP party with tons of  food, drinks and a fireworks display. We were all excited to go, but halfway there we started driving through torrential rain. Like, Noah’s Ark rain. This picture doesn’t do it justice, but here it is:

We thought we were driving through the storm and that we would escape it entirely. Except….we were wrong. About ten minutes after we arrived at this special party that my parents bought tickets for and we schleped all the way over to enjoy, the storm found us. In a big way. Keep in mind that this party was taking place on an open field/beach area with lots of tall trees and metal tent poles everywhere. And a huge metal swing set. Which some lady was swinging on. Can’t forget that part. Well, it started pouring buckets of water, and literally thunder and lightning were happening right over our heads. Not a joke, at one point I heard the loudest crack of thunder I’ve ever heard in my life and we think that lightning struck pretty close to where we were in the field.

You’d imagine that at that point we would leave, right? Well, we didn’t. It was absolutely pouring and you could hardly see anything, so instead of making a run for it, everyone at the party gathered in this tiny pavilion. We were eating our food and drinking our rum punch that we had paid a pretty penny for, and standing elbow to elbow with a bunch of strangers. It looked something like this:

Yeah, that dude touched me. Are you jealous? It got better when a group of pre-teens began to gather in a circle and sing. Loudly. And in very high-pitched tones. The older lady in the wheelchair parked right in the flow of traffic really added to the “Let’s rage!” spirit. Oh yeah, and the mud pit that was forming around us as the rain poured down smelled like raw sewage. Not a joke. It smelled like we were hanging out in a toilet bowl. So that was really appetizing and helped elevate the mood.

Needless to say, we were not having the best time. Once we knew we wouldn’t get electrocuted, the family (and C) and I hightailed it out of there. Here’s a little video I recorded as we were waiting to make our escape.

My mom analyzes our Fourth of July

I was worried that after the party took a turn for the worst, so would our holiday. But, I’m proud of us. We made the best of it. I demanded to be taken to a liquor store, where I purchased a bottle of SkinnyGirl. Then we went to Cheeburger Cheeburger, where I ate part of this:

 

We then went back to our apartment, took some drinks upstairs and watched a fireworks display from our neighbors’ balcony. It wasn’t the Fourth we were anticipating, but it was a damn good time.

The rest of the trip was spent basically like this:

Very similar to a Corona ad, no? I must also point out that I have a terrible, semi-reasonable fear of sharks. It’s bad. Usually I refuse to get into the ocean, but whenever I do, I spend the whole time viewing my own dangling legs from a shark’s perspective or imagining how the scene where they get ripped from my body would be portrayed in the movie “Jaws”. Basically it’s not so relaxing for me. Anytime a piece of seaweed brushes my leg, I’m ready to either to surrender to my fate or bonk the shark on the nose (this deters them, I’ve heard).

My family is NOT understanding of my fear. The best part is this: my mom actually saw a small shark while she was swimming and she STILL does not understand my fear.

“It was just a baby! It was more scared of me than I was of it!” she claimed last time. This time she claimed the shark incident never happened. Trust me, I remember her description. It happened.

Anyway, so after much convincing from my dad and boyfriend, I went into the water. Things were going well until I saw a large, dark shadow swimming towards us. This was the moment I had been preparing for for so long.

“YOU GUYS, I SEE SOMETHING IN THE WATER!” I screamed, and began swimming (trying not to splash too much)/quickly walking out of the water. I was in up to my chest, so basically I was effed if I didn’t make a quick move.

“Oh stop,” my dad laughed. My boyfriend just smiled. Suddenly, after much pointing and gesturing, they saw that I was right. There was a large, dark shadow moving our way. Did they get alarmed? Did they even move? No. No they did not. They would have deserved whatever happened to their limbs.

Turns out it was just a manatee. C kept telling me manatees are like big teddy bears, but this is what they look like according to Google Images:

I don’t care how harmless a manatee is, I don’t need something that looks like that swimming near me. So I sped out of the water and now I may never return, who knows.

The trip got more interesting when C and I were trying to fly home. We had a connection to make and 45 minutes to make it. No problem, right? Well, of course Jet Blue delays our first flight for 45 minutes for no apparent reason. This means we would have missed our connection. Fun and exciting times. We had to stay overnight in the airport hotel. Bummer. We were sunburnt and tired and ready to be home. But we made our own party out of it:

 

We got back home today and went right back to work, and now here we are! That was our exciting/adventurous Fourth. Hope you had a lovely one!

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