The end of the year is nigh. As the clock slowly discards the seconds and minutes of 2013 the mad preparations begin for those who want to ring in the New Year with a bang. Parties are planned, the guest lists are set and the decorations are waiting to be boldly displayed. The party hats are silently waiting in a corner soon to adorn the heads of the anticipated drunken guests and the blowers will soon be filled with alcohol saturated saliva. The song Auld Lang Syne will be warbled, some syllables will inevitably be missed by the inebriated choir, and some words will be hysterically incomprehensible.
This year, once again, I am following a beloved tradition that I started a few years ago – I will welcome the new year at home with no loud music and no intoxicated visitors. Like Valentine’s Day, for me New Year’s Eve is a holiday that I cannot seem to celebrate with the same enthusiasm as others. January 1st is certainly a new beginning but it really is just another day. It does not wipe the slate clean going into that New Year but brings with it all of the memories and experiences from the previous year. I do enjoy embracing a new calendar year and do think about the potential that the year ahead may embody but I choose not to begin that new calendar year with my arms wrapped around a porcelain vessel while popping Alleve like Tic Tacs and drinking more water than a camel that bypassed every pond in the desert.
My New Year’s Eve is quiet, contemplative and subdued. My New Year’s Eve is filled with twinkling lights, rich harmonic voices and the company of my four-legged fur child.
The beef tenderloin is in the fridge, the extra-large uncooked shrimp are in the freezer and an aged Shiraz Cabernet blend that I have been saving is awaiting the countdown on December 31st. This is my perfect New Year’s Eve. This small piece of solitude and reflection before the beginning of a new year is my favorite way to welcome January 1st. There are no noise makers, there are no obscenely drunk people pin-balling from random pieces of furniture and there is no making excuses for leaving early before the big countdown. This is bliss.
After setting up the candles and starting The Tenors ‘Lead With Your Heart DVD’, I will open up the wine and remove the crystals. I will graciously let it breathe on its own for about 20 minutes before I assist in the process and begin giving it mouth to mouth for about three hours. I will let all of the bad moments of this past year remind me of the lessons I learned and I will let the good moments bathe me in a euphoric feeling that I will carry with me into 2014.
Happy New Year to you all and may 2014 be the best year yet!!