Fountains are my favorite type of fireworks, as well as my family’s. They come in tall tubes with dazzling names like Sparkling Wonder or Spinning Panda. Once the fuse is lit, the tower explodes with a mini light show of random colors, sparks and whistles.
Since I am so budget conscious (feel free to substitute the word cheap) my biggest beef is spending the money on items that will eventually go up in smoke. My husband constantly reminds me it’s only once a year and have a little fun. So, we compromise and buy them on sale.
Last year, we thought we hit a pretty good deal. Normally for ten fountains, the cost is around $40-$50. However, we found a bag of small fountains at the store for $5! They were cone-shaped and named TNT, not that exotic a name. We figured since they were bargains, they would appear a little different, but would still do the trick.
On the evening of the 4th, my husband lined up the ten fountains on the street in front of our house. Our son and I were sitting on lawn chairs, fire extinguisher next to me as a precautionary. He lit the first fuse, which seemed to be longer than I remember past fountains to have. We all watched intently as the fuse burned, talking about what colors the fountain would emit. However, once the flame reached the top of the fountain, it fizzled out. We all figured it was a dud and he proceeded to light the next fountain. This too proved to give the same results, no display.
By the third one’s misfire, my husband was very frustrated and disappointed, especially for our son. It was apparent we weren’t going to have a bright fountain display. As I gathered the remaining seven in the plastic to return to the store, I took a look at one more closely. I let out a chuckle-- it became clear why these “fountains” wouldn’t light. I called over to my husband and son. I aimed the cone’s bottom in the air and pulled the long fuse. Out shot a stream of colored paper confetti and streamers, falling on their heads and shoulders.
“Poppers!” our son shouted joyfully and ran over to retrieve the bag. That Fourth was spent with us shooting the Poppers in the air and watching our neighbors’ firework displays, complete with firecrackers and beautiful fountains.
Though the evening didn’t turn out as planned, we all had a good time. We didn’t let a mistake ruin our evening—we found the humor in it, laughed it off and moved on.
Today, we’re on our way to buy the fountains from a fireworks stand that advertises the best prices, of course. We’ll add a few Poppers to our purchase or as I like to call them Dud Fountains with Very Long Fuses!