horizon. Our tired minds try to grasp just
what it is that we see. There, and then gone.
Wait, there’s another, and another, and
then, at once, an immense carpet of pyrotechnics erupts before our eyes. From
Montreal to Boston, from Albany to Bar
Harbor, horizon to horizon, everywhere
below, the earth explodes with celebration,
as the last century is relegated to history,
and we welcome the future.
Roman candles, mortar shells, and skyrockets sally forth exploding in red, green,
white, and purple. The magnificence of the
heavens, moon, and stars is, for once, only a
disappointing reflection of the majesty below.
The immensity of the display is difficult for us
to absorb. Like a bed of wildflowers bursting
into bloom on the first day of spring, everywhere we cast our eyes the world is aglow.
We sit in silence, the two of us, too
afraid to speak. Too afraid to break the spell
cast by this magnificent display. Our eyes
dart from one burst of brilliance to another
as we try in vain to take it all in. Trying to
absorb the enormity of the here and now
and commit it to memory before its inevita-
ble end. Slowly the smaller celebrations ebb
to a close, leaving only the cities afire with
light. And then, they too begin to wane as
the new century becomes not tomorrow,
Jeff Skiles, EAA 366120, has been a pilot for 34 years and
has almost 21,000 hours logged. He owns a 1935 Waco YOC
cabin biplane that he keeps in Brodhead, Wisconsin. Jeff is
EAA Young Eagles co-chairman and was first officer on US
Airways Flight 1549, the Miracle on the Hudson.
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