January 02, 2006

Happy 2006

Happy New Year!! We celebrated the holiday with four good friends at our apartment. We celebrated until 4 in the morning. Saturday afternoon, I roasted and a chicken and used my new food processor to make four different salads to be served as side dishes. It took all day Sunday to recover and I think some of today will be dedicated to shaking off the celebration.

For those of you that don't know, my husband and I live in New York City, in Queens to be exact. For some of you who don't live in New York City you may wondering why we would spend New Year's Eve at home when we live so close to Times Square. Perhaps you've been watching Dick Clark's New Year's program for years and think that it looks like an exciting place to be. Well, if you're like me and you don't like crowds Times Square is the last place you want to be on New Year's Eve.

I was there one time on Dec 31. One year, I had a great time part-time job working in various Broadway theaters. When I got to Times Square that evening at 7pm to get to the theater, Times Square was eerily empty. There was no car or people traffic. Usually inside a theater when you're standing in the back- the part of the theater closest to the street - you can hear the muted sounds of the NYC hustle and bustle. That evening, you could hear nothing outside. When it was quiet in the theater it was dead silent. The quiet on 44th street was misleading. I thought when I walked out of the theater it would be easy to make my way down town to where I was meeting people for a New Year's eve bar crawl.

But when the show let out and I walked out on to 44th Street I looked to my left toward Broadway proper where mobs and mobs of people were crowded together waiting to celebrate. So instead, I walked to my right toward 8th Avenue where I would catch the subway. There were just as many people crowding there around giant monitors that were set up so people that weren't in Times Square could see the ball drop. I tried make my way to Port Authority so I could get downstairs to the subway station but alas the entrances to the stations were closed.

At that point I was freaking out. I couldn't see in front of me because there were so many people, so I stopped for a moment to catch breath and regroup, when all of a sudden I got sideswiped by a big horse's ass. Throughout the crowd, cops on horses were providing crowd control. That hurt but the cop didn't seem at all sympathetic. Truth be told, he probably didn't even notice what had happened.

Eventually I found my way up to 45th and walked further west to 9th Avenue where I found a cab immediately. I went downtown and spent New Year's eve with some friends I'd made from the job I had at that time.

Being in Times Square on New Year's eve is not my idea of fun. Besides that dropping ball looks about as big as thimble from Broadway. You see it better on televisions. But if you like ridiculous crowds then you'll probably enjoy it. According to the Times Square Alliance 750,000 revellers showed up for this year's celebration. Most people I know feel clautrophobic in situations like that. For me, it's too much like be buried alive which makes it an irrational fear.

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