I’ve adopted a new tradition for New Year’s Eve. It requires no reservations, no fancy dress, no cash advance. I don’t have to wrangle taxis or drink cheap champagne or go home smelling like an ash tray. No more trying to make a meal out of tepid hors d’oeuvres, cursing panty hose or tripping through snow in high heals.
What do I do? It’s simple really, I stay at home. Yes, that’s it folks, for the past few years (many years, who am I kidding) I’ve spent New Year’s Eve hiding from bedazzled crowds and dreadful weather. Not only do I not miss the whole New Year’s Eve party scene, I wish I had started this tradition years earlier.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love to spend New Year’s Eve in the company of good friends and I’ve enjoyed a good majority of the New Year’s Eve celebrations I’ve attended. But after a while, those celebrations came at an ever increasing price, both financially and energetically speaking.
These days most people I know travel across county, country or state to spend time with family during the holidays. Or they, like me, have discovered the pure joy of ringing in the New Year at home.
So here’s what I do. In the late afternoon, I turn up the heat and curl up on the couch with a good book. This New Year’s Eve, I read Catherine Caufield’s In the Rainforest and find the bits on Indonesia’s Transmigration Program at once fascinating and deeply disturbing. Then about four-thirty, I make a wonderful meal. Something akin to a Christmas feast, only more creative. I have my dinner, follow it with a scruptious dessert, and watch television until the ball drops in Times Square. If I’m particularly energetic, I stay up an extra hour to cheer in Chicago’s New Year.