The Ball Drop

Trip Start Jun 23, 1970
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of United States  , New York
Monday, December 31, 2012

Today was devoted to prepping and waiting for midnight. We did sleep in, then packed up food and games and electronics and took a cab down to Times Square. Even though 7th had already been closed off, we had an easy trip down to the building. No problem checking in and setting up our conference room (the board room on the 31st floor). When then went out to buy more food and groceries as well as some sparkling wine for midnight. Re-entering the building around 3pm was easy; we understand the barricades went up around 5pm. Our friends joined us around 4pm. Not sure when the building was scanned and locked down.

The nine hours waiting for the ball to drop went quickly. It was mesmerizing watching the streets fill in and the police deploying. We pulled up chairs to the large picture windows and looked out at all the interesting events. For a long time, the ball was doing its light show, even though it was sitting on the platform, invisible to the crowds below. We had a live feed going on simultaneously so we could figure out who was performing on the stage ... but there were multiple stages and we had trouble finding anything showing the main stage. The ball was raised at 6pm, with fireworks. There was a giant switch, and some VIP from Philipps and his family switched the switch on. Fireworks greeted the rising ball.

Every hour on the hour, we had a brief countdown and burst of fireworks. It was very exciting watching the fireworks from their launch point, shooting out to the buildings near by. We talked and drank and ate (a lot) and played one game of Hoopla but mostly found our entertainment going on outside. The Empire State Building was lit with colorful LEDs, and the radio towers nearby were also lit in glowing neon lights. It was a spectacle.

Finally, it was midnight. We could hear the countdown from the streets 31 stories below. I had my Dad on facetime on my tablet and my sister on facetime on my phone so that they could see the display, too. The ball drop was followed my lots of fireworks and crazy cheering on our part. So much fun, and so awesome to be so close to the Ball, which is gorgeous.

After midnight, we watched the crowds disperse (rapidly ... probably after 9 nine hours in the cold without food, drink, or a bathroom, they were ready to go), and the litter left behind. We began packing up and tidying the conference room and were ready to leave by 1am. Broadway was still closed, so we went over to 8th and walked up. It was crowded but not insane. We were home by 1:30am.


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