Is it just me, or has New Years Eve lost the swag it once held?
Now before you go shaking your head and judging me with your eyes, I’m well aware that now I’m in the upper stages of my 20’s and no longer have the desire to get trashy, rowdy and boozed to ring in the new year. Let’s be honest, aside from screaming “Happy New Year!” to every stranger in sight and finding that elusive midnight kiss in the dark, was New Years Eve ever really different from any other night out?
Growing up, mine were often spent at camping grounds in Cromwell, New Zealand. We would make our way out of Invercargill every Boxing Day and spend the following two weeks or so sleeping in tents, eating copious amounts of barbequed everything and sunning ourselves by the nearest watering hole. That’s how we roll.
On New Years Eve, us kids stayed up with the adults until midnight (if we could keep awake) when we were ushered off to bed so our parents could continue their celebrations in peace.
During later years, we were allowed a bit of drink and had free reign of the camping ground and pub down the road (so long as we had an adult present). The night was spent running around being crazy pre-teens and having harmless fun.
Fast-forward to the horrible teenage years when camping with your family over Christmas was totally not cool and was generally best to be avoided if you wanted to maintain any street cred you may or may not have had; so instead we would hang out at someones house, or go camping in Arrowtown (which is totally just down the road from Cromwell and our parents, just saying) and got boozed there instead.
New Years Eve was exciting – there were always crowds no matter where you went, everyone was in high spirits and high on spirits or other substances, and we didn’t have a care in the world. Back then, our main stressors included getting our assignments in on time, deciding which boys we fancied and how we were going to pay for that $10 bottle of vodka.
My last five New Years Eve’s have looked like this:
2007 – We were staying in Cromwell with my family, but dashed over to Queenstown to re-live some of the magic from years gone by. As we weren’t really drinking or running around and falling over ourselves; the magic of New Years Past was all but gone, but the trip up the gondola was pretty cool and the fireworks were still amaze.
2008 – We spent camping at Franz Josef Glacier. So this photo was technically taken on December 30th, but New Years Eve consisted of a high winds that nearly blew our tent away while we were sleeping inside it and a wicked thunder and lightning storm that scared us half to death. Needless to say, no photographs were taken, but the storm more than made up for any lack of fireworks that night.
2009 – For the first time ever we spent our Christmas holidays in Christchurch, where we were living at the time. After a day trip to the West Coast, we were pretty buggered when we got home and I’m pretty sure I fell asleep on the couch well before midnight. I think I remember Skype-ing with my family and did manage to get a photo of the last sunset for the year.
2010 – Universal Studios Osaka, anyone?! Probably my favourite New Years Eve so far, although it was freezing cold so we didn’t venture on any of the outdoor rides, but did enjoy one or two inside. I totally got motion-sick on the 3D Back to the Future experience, ick!
2011 – The day was spent sunning ourselves at the beach before meeting up with one of my besties and her hubby who were visiting Melbourne for a holiday! We had grand plans for the night, which unfortunately did not eventuate due to a trip to A&E although we did get to see the amazing Sydney fireworks on the television there.
2012 – ?? Yes, I am going to have a drink or two. Yes, I am going to watch, utter ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ and take photos of the fireworks; and yes I am probably going to go to bed straight after. Am I now a proper grown up? Or am I just boring?
Either way, I’ll be waking up tomorrow ready to start the New Year sans hangover to enjoy the final day of my Christmas holidays before I’m thrust back into work, real-life and responsibility.
Happy New Year, everyone!!
- Top 10 International New Years Eve Festivals (essentialtravel.co.uk)
- Australia prepares for 2013 (bigpondnews.com)