My daughter, who is seven on Sunday, has regular homework from school and the last thing she had to do was research Guy Fawkes. Whilst I’m somewhat dubious about explaining what treason is to a six year old (and very thankful she never got to the ‘he jumped to his death to avoid being hung, drawn and quartered’ bit) I am glad that, at the very least, she knows a little about the history of Guy Fawkes Night, or Bonfire Night as it’s usually called now. But then these days, how many people are actively celebrating the failure of a Catholic assassination attempt of a Protestant King? I doubt anyone is…
In truth, I like the idea of a celebration of light in the Autumn anyway, irrespective of history. There’s something at the very heart of the human condition to want to create light in the dark, and to do that with friends, family and great food around a roaring fire with added sparkly fireworks is a gorgeous tradition. I’ve already witnessed beautiful Diwali fireworks from the window of our new home this weekend, and now it’s my turn to add to the light in the darkness. One this I won’t be doing is lighting one of those big paper lanterns that are released into the sky. I’ve seen the damage they can do to wild and farm animals, so they’re best left alone, I think.
I’ll be with my family celebrating at home, with fireworks managed by Dad, food cooked by Mum and sparklers waved by me and the kids (with gloves on, and a bucket of sand handy!) and I’m really looking forward to it. As I’m on holiday from work all day, I shall be preparing the food with my Mum and I’m really looking forward to an evening of relaxed fun.
How will you celebrate? Go to an organised display? Celebrate at home? Or do you prefer not to celebrate and ignore it until it goes away?