the countdown

New York Travel Blog

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macy's directory

we knew the majority of the day would be spent waiting around in times square so we planned a very easy morning.  it ended much easier than we planned as we basically spent it shopping!  being monique and i, we had to hit the huge macy's -- it was like 5 stories!  there was also a huge sale going so there were people everywhere.

by the time we were done with macy's and walking around a bit more, we decided to head over to times square just to check out the situation.  we should've known what we were up against when we got on the subway and saw a ton, no a fleet, of police down there.  literally more police then people waited around for the day's madness to begin.  we got off the subway and took our time stopping at coldstone creamery for ice cream, but then freaked out when we got to times square and found it closed off!  there were already four blocks of people crammed in waiting!!  we ran down the street with our coldstone trying to find the next empty block only to find that gated off as well.

our primo spot for the evening
  we spoke with some officers who said they would be letting people in, it just wasn't ready to open yet, so just wait patiently.  so that we did.  we politely pushed our way to the front and waited patiently to get into the gated off pen where we would wait patiently for another 8 hours for the ball to drop.  we called jose and made sure they got their butts down there immediately if they wanted to be in a spot where they could catch a glimpse of the ball, and shortly later they let us in.  it was 4:30pm. 

so there we were -- we got a great spot near a railing -- essential if you don't want to feel clausterphobic or like a sardine shoved in a can.  we made friends with folks around us and did the mini countdown on the tower with every hour that passed.

the crowd awaits in times square
  by dark we were no longer standing and could care less about how clean/dirty the ground was.  not to mention we were starving!!  we weren't prepared at all because we initally were only coming down to look around and watch the set up - we had no idea people would've been waiting since 12 in the afternoon.  had we come prepared we would've at least brought stuff to do, read, play -- but it's okay we had each other. 

when the sponsor folks from discover started handing out the big new years eve hats, folks started to liven up and get excited again.  then when the countdown shows began, it turned out cyndi lauper was performing on the stage directly in front of us!  we got our big hats and balloons, busted out our sparkle 2004 sunglasses we bought earlier in the day and rocked out to cyndi and clay aiken.

midway point
  at this point the evening was going much faster; the cold had seeped into levels so deep that you didn't feel it anymore, and every minute that passed just got everybody more and more amped.

lessons we learned for future times -- 1. bring stuff to do, 2. bring stuff to eat and drink, 3. bring a blanket to cover with and possibly sit on, 4. mcdonalds delivers! 5. getting drunk is probably not the best idea - if you have to pee you're kind of assed out because once you leave your bullpen i highly doubt they're letting you back in.  however if you stay in a hotel in times square, you may come and go as you please with your room key.  you can party in your room until 11:45 and then head out to watch the ball drop! 

finally the real countdown began.

keeping us safe
  you didn't even know when it was happening because everybody was screaming and jumping and so excited by this point you could barely hear or figure out what was going on around you.  when the ball hit the ground, the fireworks went off, the confetti came from every direction you could think of, and the music blared!  it's really almost a blur because so much is happening all at once.  you're hugging anyone and everyone around you, laughing, singing/mumbling through the lyrics of auld lang syne, taking pictures with complete strangers, and just generally going crazy!  i've never seen that much confetti or fireworks in my lifetime.  simply put - it was worth every second of the 8 hours we spent waiting.  or as monique put it - "that was way cooler than i thought it was gonna be!"

shortly after the crowd began to disperse and it was mad dashes to every restaurant near by.

me and mo!
  we tried to walk a bit away from the crowd and eventually found a restaurant with space where we could pee and eat -- seeing as we were ravenous by this point, and call our folks back home to wish them happy new year.  by the time we made it back to the subway the crowds had cleared and we waited for no time getting a train back home and passing out. 

it was fantastic.  i'd completely do it again!

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macys directory
macy's directory
our primo spot for the evening
our primo spot for the evening
the crowd awaits in times square
the crowd awaits in times square
midway point
midway point
keeping us safe
keeping us safe
me and mo!
me and mo!
waisting time
waisting time
cyndi lauper
cyndi lauper
these are those layers of cold i m…
these are those layers of cold i …
friend we made - an adorable coupl…
friend we made - an adorable coup…
seven seconds!
seven seconds!
happy new year!
happy new year!
New York
photo by: herman_munster