I had plenty of opportunities growing up to indulge my boyish interest in pyrotechnics, my grandfather built a fireworks factory. I tagged along with my dad to the factory on many a Sunday morning mostly in silence. The few words spoken – “don’t touch that,” “get away from there,” broke his meditative silence at intervals. The musky smells of chemicals, papers and dirt, combined to fill the office with the well recognized odor of my dad’s job. You could say it stunk but I smelled the incense of heaven.
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Looking back as a young boy learning the trade from my Italian fireworks making father and grandfather, the most fundamental skill I learned was how to tie the Clove Hitch – the fireworks knot. Everything in the factory revolved around this simple way of connecting two things together.