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This is it! I've given up work -retired from the rat race and am about to start on a 10 year adventure, doing all those things I've been meaning to do but never had the time to do them. I've offloaded my responsibilities and it is now my time. So follow my adventures and see whether I actually manage anything!



Wednesday, 1 January 2014

New Year's Eve Fireworks




Last night I ventured into London to see the fireworks. Although I have lived in London for over 40 years I have never celebrated New Year with other revellers in London. This was going to be one off the bucket list. I arrived in London at 10pm with plans of wandering around Trafalgar Square  before taking up a position by the river. You would think that having lived here for so long I would know what to expect but no. Getting out of the station was difficult enough but then I was met with wave upon wave of people travelling away from Trafalgar Square. Speaking to one of the policeman I was told that all roads down to the river were closed now as they had reached capacity! He told me to make my way to Waterloo Bridge where I could view the fireworks. Fair enough I though t,as there was still 2 hours to go. I joined the thousands of people going in that direction only to discover that Waterloo Bridge was also closed now.

Eventually I was able to go down a side street and took up a position near Temple Underground. I could see the top of the London Eye from there so knew I would see something of the fireworks. Disappointed at being a little too far away I struck up conversation with the only English speaking couple nearby. They were staying in London for the weekend so were also visitors. But we chatted away and the time past quickly. We were then joined by a young man from Cape Town who had somehow squeezed his way through. He was in a very jolly mood having just come from the pub. Although in just his shirt sleeves and no coat the weather, which was raining by now, didn't seem to bother him. Every now and again huge cheers would go up from the crowd for no other reason than the celebratory feel of the occasion. The chinking of bottles and glasses could be heard from every direction. Finally the countdown started and then an explosion of colour from the Eye. It did look spectacular and I could see, but I had a side on view and really you needed to be facing the Eye to really appreciate the show.

Once it had finished I said my goodbyes to my new found friends and quickly made my way back to the station. As I had not been drinking I had a definite advantage over many in the crowds and managed to weave my way through the throngs of singing, dancing, and drinking groups. Good humoured police and security staff guided people towards the stations but having checked before I left I knew that no trains were stopping at Waterloo station and that I needed to walk back towards Trafalgar Square and Charing Cross. The crowds had not reached the station by the time I got there and I was able to get a seat on a very empty train as it left the station.

Would I do it again? Probably not but glad that I have now experienced New Year's Eve in London.
Photo from google images.

17 comments:

  1. I watched your fireworks on television here, it was beautiful. We don't have that great fireworks, everybody has his own fireworks in the street. It is like a warzone this evening with lots of serious accidents and wounded people. The noise in the streets went on until 3 o'├žlock in the morning.
    Many people here would prefer such a firework you have, but I see that it is overcrowded already.

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  2. A phrase that comes to my mind increasingly as I get older, leave it for the younguns. Good that you experienced it though. Everyone is so happy on NYE.

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  3. Even I know you should have been there around 6pm to get a good place and I live 40 miles away. I think you needed a companion to go with really. Yes I would love to go there as well so may be I will someday. Happy New Year

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  4. I wondered if that was your own picture, because it seemed perfect! Well, I'm glad you made some new friends and got THAT marked off your bucket list. :-)

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  5. Good for you for getting out there and checking an item off the bucket list! Sounds like a fun time! I'd like to once be in Times Square for New Year's Eve, but sadly live on the wrong coast of the US for that! :)

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  6. Sounds like you really had an eventful new year. Thanks you for sharing the photograph it really is wonderful.
    Have a happy rest of new year.

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  7. Great way to end the year, with one last check off! I saw beautiful photos on the Internet last night and wondered if maybe you were in London with a good view. What I saw was beautiful. No fireworks here, just a Chinese takeout on my mom's last night in Minnesota.

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  8. Good grief, I admire your adventuring spirit. I would do it once also just to see what it is like for myself.

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  9. Dearest Fun60;
    I usually enjoy fire works in summer here in my area. Never seen New Year ones p;)
    Happy for your great star of the year♡♡♡

    Lots of Love and Hugs from Japan, xoxo Miyako*

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  10. Happy New Year. Your picture is very beautiful. I can not imagine that you took the photo from very far away. Thanks for sharing.

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  11. seems like one needs to get there very early to see the spectacle close up. Not sure if I would bother. We don't have fireworks in my town on New Year's eve - though I think they might have them at the trotting track meeting. We wait for Australia Day later in January for the fireworks. It is easy to get a good position, but not so easy to get out of town again.
    Have a wonderful 2014, and thanks for stopping by my blog this week.

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  12. What an adventure ! I saw the London firework on TV at 3 am in the morning just when we had left our New Years party. I had done the same 4 years ago, I went to Brussels for a special firework for the new decade of the new Millennium. The theme was the fall of the wall ! All EU countries had participated. It was really exceptional but we had the same problem as you, getting as close as possible and Brussels is so much smaller then London. The city was packed !! I don't know ev how I even dared to go by car and find a parking place half on a cimetary ! As I didn't block the street the police closed an eye ! Although it was a real experience I thought never again !!

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  13. seems to be an adventure to remember even it you saw it sideways. :)

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  14. Lucky you and what a super shot you got! Happy New Year!!

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  15. You are one brave lady. I couldn't bare to be squashed in revelling crowds but I do love watching the fireworks on TV. I have in my bucket list a New Year's celebration in Sydney but viewing from my hotel room..

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  16. Good for you -- again. I echo Diane above. The very small crowds here were a lot for me to handle .

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  17. What pretty fireworks ... another thing to tick off your Bucket List .... Well done !

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