It has been long since I published a post, but the blame goes to the holiday season. As the Christmas spirit gets a nudge, my house gets jam-packed with family members oozing out of every room. Cousins fly down from all over the world, the kitchen pantry gets overloaded with fattening goodies, cameras keep flashing in every corner of the house and you can hear my squeaky laugh from six blocks down the road. This is my version of happy holidays.
But that is when all the merriment shifts from Christmas mode to New Year’s Eve planning. Terror.
I have to confess that the yearly turn-over of the calendar to the New Year is my favourite time of the year. There is a joy of a new number, a new beginning and a reprieve from the completion of 365 days. This is the time when people share their retrospectives on the year’s celebrity deaths, natural disasters and favourite movie releases. There are some who even manifest a futuristic vision for their country. The next day’s newspaper is filled with predictions for each star sign (Yes! I read them religiously and actually note down my “lucky months” with their “lucky colours”).
But before all that, what happens the night before? Are you one of those who blow a noisemaker alone in your apartment and crash before midnight? Or are you the kind who does a round of shots as the clock strikes 12? As for me – I am none of those. I am the confused variety who spends the New Year with family in front of the idiot box and subsequently watch the countdown on it. Alas!
I find New year’s eve planning incredibly pressurising. It is troublesome. It is a pain in all the wrong places. So even if it a new year, a new digit, a fresh start and blah blah, why do we HAVE to burn a hole in our pockets to enjoy it? Why do hotels and resorts – which serve pretty gross food anyway – charge us a fortune for a buffet dinner meal? I refuse to pay that, despite the presence of fire dancers, face painters, magicians and belly dancers. It is ridiculous that today’s culture demands us to fetch a couple of dollars out of our pockets in order to have a good night out. We are compelled to do so, only to tell everyone that we spent NYE with Spanish flamenco dancers swaying near our table, while we gorged on our tiramisu. It’s more of an ego and status maintenance strategy, rather than let’s-have-a-good-night. The low-key options are not mainstream anymore. Everything is extravagant, expensive and eloquent.
It is not just a tough night for misers but also a very depressing one for all singles in town. Of all the holidays, New Year’s Eve is particularly a romantic affair, where you want to do something special with your significant other. Thanks to the hyped-up midnight kiss, being single or romantically unattached is harmful on this night. It just leads into further musing over the miseries of one’s life and the moments that await them in the new year. A long night of self-pity. This is exactly why I spend it at home with parents. At least the fireworks on TV keep me happy and hopeful. What also keeps me hopeful is the money saved from not going out. Imagine how many pairs of shoes a girl can buy in exchange of 10 rounds of tequila shots. Marvellous thought, isn’t it?
This is the time when we are bombarded with articles on how to “cure” a new year hangover and where are the “best parties” in town. There is however a flip-side to our over blown expectations from the festive season. All the hyperglycaemic levels of fun that we are supposed to be having are all satisfied by just reading these brilliant articles throughout December. They make me feel like I should be doing something because the entire world is. And I should be following so-and-so journalist’s tips on my supposed “perfect new year’s eve night” because (ironically) she will be sucked in at home, watching a classic movie in her PJ’s and hogging the leftover Christmas chocolates.
Although this year is different. The millennium decade is coming to an end. Instead of “two thousand and ten”, we can actually say “twenty ten”. Sounds so much more cooler. So much more 21st century-ish.
But is this coolness taking my planning to a different tangent? No. It is not. With just a day left and over-booked restaurants, I am happy to announce that my New Year’s Eve night remains unplanned and soon my Facebook status will be changed to “What are your plans guys? Include me in it pleaseeee”.
So If you have any; exotic, wild, crazy, romantic, beautiful, expensive, fun and elaborate plans for December 31st, then please do share with me (NOT) ! I won’t come and kill you in your sleep.