New Years is a complicated holiday. There are lots of parties and events to go to but most people are vague and noncommittal about their plans. Some spend it with friends, some with family and some choose to sleep through the falling ball and fireworks to avoid the whole scene. To make celebrating the holiday even more difficult most events revolve around alcohol. What do you do if you can’t yet drink?
The answer to that question is to go into New York City, specifically to Times Square to witness the chaos first hand. Or at least that is what my friends and I thought when we were 20 and had nothing better to do.
So we took the train into the big city from Long Island. We stood in throngs of people for hours while others passed around booze (we read the rules and did not bring any) and pissed in bottles (we held it). We watched as the people closer to the stage got free stuff, we listened to the second rate entertainment and tried to preserve the small amount of space we had in the swaying crowd. When the ball finally fell, the confetti soared, and the crowds quickly disappated. We skipped through the streets of drunk people falling out of bars, back to Penn Station where we ate a slice of the worlds best pizza and vowed never to do that again.
That was 2005, the start of 2006. One of the girls who skipped through the street with me that night passed away November of 2011. And since New Years is a time for reflection and reverie about our lives, for me, it will always remind me of the value of life, the gift of each new day and each new year.
I wish everyone a healthy and happy new year!
May we all be happy and thankful for the many gifts in our lives and the time we have with each other.