Happy New Year!
And nothing seems to quite hail in the new year than the constant, repetitive question of "Is it the new year yet?" around the countdown time.
I spent these precious count down moments on the darkened beach of Rye, an hour East of Melbourne, with only the occasional illegal fire work being let off meters from our footfalls to light up my friends' drunken expressions.
Many a juvenile like ourselves had snuck off to this end of the beach free from the large number of cops patrolling the area sniffing the air like dogs for the scent of alcohol which would land the bearer of the substance with an on-the-spot-fine.
From my esky in the back of the ute we had pulled out our tinnies of Bundy and Smirnoff to hide on our persons before skittering off like rabbits into the night with cops lurking only meters away.
Once on the beach we cantered about triumphantly holding up our cans and kicking up salty water in the shallows. Once it had been established the area was cop and bogan free we began to wonder how would we know it when the clock struck midnight?
We questioned others loitering in the vicinity and they gave us estimates of it being anywhere between 8 minutes and 3 minutes til midnight.
"I'm sure we'll know" I assured Nat and Fleece, "We'll hear it"
But noises would suddenly erupt from different spots to signal in a new year at different times.
"Is it the New Year yet?"
"Nahhh" a drunk bystander (actually he was lying down) called out.
Eventually fireworks propelling skywards from numerous areas around the Bay told us it was 2008.
We danced and laughed about on the black beach that occasionally would be lit up with red or orange.
Panting we realised our hands were now empty of any liquid so in nodded agreement we decided to return to the ute to replenish the stock.
Walking back along the road we were approached by a guy who had just been in a brawl and had had his tooth knocked out who advised us not to walk along alone- crazy barbarians were on the loose.
Like everybody else we wandered about aimlessly that night. Down the street, to the beach, into the water, into the park and down to the beach again.
We went swimming about 2am with some Wog Boys from Greensborough who took a shine to my ute and to Nat, whose always had a weakness for the Woggies.
At 4am still wet and sandy we climbed into the back of my ute which had been decked out with mattresses, sheets and towels taped up over the windows.
We opened the windows and closed up the tail gate and tried to sleep while revelers out on the street tried to party on with just their systems full of drugs and grog.
I didn't sleep a wink due to drinking four energy drinks since 10pm and because I was the one lying by the tailgate so I felt like a watchdog, lying with wide eyes and listening intently to every little noise (not that there many little noises).
All up it was rather good New Years, but I've had some really really shit New Years in the past years so I don't have much to compare it to.
How was all your New Years?