Happy New Year, exclamation marks. I so want to write something sarcastic but I think I'll put that to one side for now, despite my hangover.
So far, so-so. My French / Polish neighbours have already woken me up after 3 hours sleep by blasting out the most godawful cheesy Eurotechno at full volume. They haven't done this for months, when Large Northern Flatmate and I were forced to complain to the council and their landlord, and had to pay them a visit at 4am when they came home from a night's dancing ripped to the tits on pills and decided to recreate a club in their bedroom. On that night, they'd woken me up a couple of hours before I had to get up for work so I'd stormed over to their flat in my ridiculous thick-lensed glasses (I wear contact lenses normally and fully intended to go back to bed once I'd put my foot through their speakers, so I had to wear The Glasses That I Must Never Be Seen In.) However, this stupid eyewear was like a moth to a flame for a stoned Frenchman who, on being told to Turn the fucking music down, simply walked right up to my face and, nose to nose with me, said 'Woah, you 'ave ze tiniest eyes'.
This morning, having still not extracted myself from bed, I went on to have a two-hour chat with my lovely ex-girlfriend from New York who has now flown back home, permanently. I always thought it cruel to tell her how I feel because I can't see a future between us, but she demanded to hear how I really felt, so I told her I have strong feelings for her. It's like love. It probably is love. It's certainly a strong emotion closely affiliated to love but I'm not sure myself because I don't think I've ever loved anyone, barring Beyonce, Pringles and Indiana Jones when I was a kid. Plus I'm male and British, a double-whammy in the emotionless void stakes.
I also think I'm dreaming if I believe I can just pick up a job in New York. Firstly, they'd quite rightly tell me I can't take a job an American should get, plus I'm pretty sure that US Immigration's collective hearts don't melt when they hear that some Brit's met a beautiful, charming, intelligent, sexy American woman and he'd like to move to Manhattan to date her until such a time that he fucks things up.
After the call, I felt compelled to check my dating website in the hope that some new women have taken 2007 as their cue to join up. There was a new and quite stunning woman there, but her profile read: 'not to forget my smile, it make me look very goog'.
I have this completely unfounded fear that teenage boys put fake profiles up for cheap laughs, or else Eastern European crime syndicates are trying to seduce unsuspecting single idiots to their criminal bosom where they can kidnap them.
I have a very fertile imagination.
The thought that there's a beautiful woman out there who spells 'Good' with two G's is just too awful to contemplate.
Last night, and one-by-one, all of my New Year's Eve options were diminishing. A vast number of my friends were all choosing to stay in with their respective partners, the first time this has happened. Steve's son fell ill, so he didn't come down to London, and Large Northern Flatmate chose to continue housesitting for his brother so he could watch the Philly Eagles beat Atlanta on Sky Sports. (Large Northern Flatmate would watch slug racing if it were televised.)
PhilandNatalie and JimmyandLisa were having a coupley meal with friends of theirs from work, so I decided to meet them in the pub afterwards.
I walked there at 10pm, choosing the quickest route which took me alongside the murky Thames via a dark, shrouded copse. I've walked it before at night and I generally don't like it, what with the dark and the creepiness and the Who's That In The Bushes?. I have to stop listening to my iPod before entering as it's not good to have one of your senses dulled when you can't see ahead of you. The bare trees didn't help lighten the atmosphere, with their gnarled fingers of branches reaching up to heaven as if clawing out for mercy. At one point in the journey, there's an old disused bandstand with a strange pointy roof that reminds me of witches' hats. So that's nice. And then, as I'm walking along in purposeful quick strides, an owl - a fucking owl - starts twit-twoo'ing. I'm walking for several minutes when, spying the footpath with its street lighting sanctuary in the far distance, a hidden figure by the water's edge suddenly darts past me, and improbably vanishes. I don't come into contact with anyone during this walk through the thicket as I was the only person stupid and stubborn enough to take it, so I put the movement down to my mind playing tricks on me, even if it did seem momentarily human.
By the time I get to the pub I'm sweaty and grateful, despite it being a cheesy hellhole. The DJ is playing 'Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go' and I'm forced to drink alone for half an hour. There are lots of women all dressed up for the night. It soon becomes evident that PhilandNatalie and JimmyandLisa aren't coming as they want to have a drink at their flat, so Jimmy turns up to get me. We stay for a drink and get chatting to two friendly women from Portsmouth who know the barman. I spend most of my time confirming that I am actually Strawberry Blond while they insist I'm ginger (purely for comic effect, in my opinion). Jimmy then gets a call at 11.45pm to remind us to head back so we leave, which shocks the women as they assume we're at least staying to ring in the New Year.
In a parallel universe, I'm sure I'd've got a snog. Typical.
By the time we get to PhilandNatalie's, we're soon singing Auld Lang Syne and drinking champagne. At midnight, we become obsessed with looking out of their windows from our raised vantage point. Sprawlled out in front of us was north and west London, and all along the dark skyline, dozens of fireworks were being set off. Suddenly the thought of being stuck back in that small pub loses its appeal. The television then shows the huge fireworks celebrations at the London Eye, and we find it, live and in the distance, exploding and erupting as if the end of World War II was being celebrated again.
Which was nice.
Then we sung Playstation karaoke until I walked home (via a different route) and got to bed at 7am.
I'll have to make the most of 2007. I have some things I must do before it's too late.
Happy New Year!!!