Friday, December 29, 2006

Celebrating the New Year in New York and London

I spent very few New Year’s Eves in London. Most of the times, I was traveling home to be with my family. I stayed in London for the millennium (2000). I went out with the millions to celebrate the beginning of a new era. With fireworks over London’s sky and drunk people. It was fun but crowed, difficult to move, see and speak. And even more difficult to return home. From my years in London, I don’t remember people being frustrated about New Year’s Eve and what they will do about it and I hardly remember long party lists in local free newspapers. I guess most people were invited to family organized parties or small gatherings at friends’ places. And they all were ok with it.

New York is another story. Since before Christmas, everybody talks about New Year’s celebrations in Times Squares (included CNN's Anderson Cooper who will be working at Times Square that night), there are numerous lists in all local free newspapers about club/bar organized parties that cost a fortune and even longer lists with pre-New Year celebration dinners (open or cash bars included) in various restaurants. Not to mention the ezines I am getting on how to get dressed the stellar night. I have to say, I haven’t seen cities, people or the media so well prepared and organized for the coming of the New Year. Is it frustration or just party mood, I wonder.

Don’t get me wrong. I still like to entertain myself when the New Year comes into life. It’s like the birth of a new baby, the beginning of a new project, the first day in school or college, the very first job. And I like to be with people I love, have fun, drink champagne, laugh. I want to laugh. But I never planned it well in advance or got frustrated about it.It’s an important event but it doesn’t require special planning. I just go with the flow and an invitation or two usually follow.

Happy New Year everybody!


New York: Celebrate New Year’s at Brooklyn Bridge. Check for more information

London: A World Civilisation or a Clash of Civilisations conference, 20 January 2007, Time: 10am-5pm. Location: The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, London SW1