My father set the penny rocket to shoot up to the sky. Zoom – off it went above everyone's head, straight through the glass fanlight, landing on the hall mat. Fortunately no-one was hurt. At a later bonfire my grandad put the family's fireworks in an empty tomato basket that he carried to the bonfire.
Uncle lit the first rocket, and a golden rain, then a Jumping Jack that banged and jumped wildly around, everyone squealing in pleasurable fear. One more jump and it landed in the basket among the other fireworks. Sizzling, sparks, terror all around. "Throw the basket down, George." "Quick, George – be quick," and George did what they said – just in time for there were some very lively fireworks in that lot. As they hit the ground they were exploding and shooting off sparks and flames of many colours. A dramatic show in mega quick time. No-one hurt, no damage done, but from then on special care was taken on bonfire night.
My three girls loved to make a Guy, packing Reg's discarded clothes with whatever waste was handy. If nothing better was available a stuffed paper bag with a mask did for a head. An old broom handle or branch gave back support but they didn't flap if it had to stay limp like an old rag doll, no need to fuss when you end up burning it.
They like a rocket, loved catherine wheels and all the pretty fireworks and refused to have bangers. When their bonfire burned low they went indoors and nibbling gingerbread men biscuits and sipping cocoa look through the window to admire other folks rockets...
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