A perspective from Perth, Western Australia

Thursday, January 01, 2004

Happy New Year!

Happy new year to all! As I write this, Vancouver's just clicked over into 2004, so a special New Year's greeting to those of my friends who are there.

I celebrated last night by first going with my friend Steven into Northbridge (where I bumped into vyxn), and then off to Lord Street overpass from where we had a great vantage point to watch the fireworks. We had a mini United Nations on top of the bridge and I phoned 1194 and got to hear them say "At the third stroke, it will be twelve...o'clock...precisely" and beep in the new year. (This sounds incredibly geeky, but it was fun)

The police had practically killed off Scarborough (I think we saw over 50 police and about 10 kids there) and I later heard Cottesloe was kind of the same. While I'm all for maintaining order, 99% of those kids (while maybe intoxicated) were there to have fun, and did so without offending anybody. It seems they all moved up to the coastal town of Lancelin, which was our next stop.

We decided on a whim to go there, and 1.25 hours and 120km later, we were there. The place, to which I'd never been before, was absolutely full of people, mostly underage, and we heard there'd been some problems earlier in the night and the small contingent of police had been overwhelmed. That being said, the majority of the teenagers were either sitting around at the cafe or were "happy drunk" and wishing anybody within sight a Happy New Year. We stayed there for about an hour and walked around, then went back to Perth and checked out the beaches as the sun rose.

I hope everyone else had a happy New Year's festivities (unlike my parents, who have been arguing about theirs ever since I woke up this afternoon) and that everything you wish for comes to you in 2004.


Anonymous Daniel said...

Hi Andy! Glad to hear you had a great new year :) You forgot to mention leaving a crazy voicemail on my phone when you were in Lancelin ... not that I minded at all :P lol...

One thing I love about your posts is that you pick out details that anyone else would miss and give readers a very informed and hilarious look at the situations you find yourself in. I'd love to see some of your anecdotal travel tales in my local bookstore one day. If you ever need an editor... :P

Well, happy New Year to you too and thank you for thinking of us way over on this side of the globe! I'd give you a great big hug, but my arms aren't quite the requisite length.

Final note: 2003 was pretty much a bad year for me, except for one thing which happened. That thing was meeting and getting to know you, which made all the rest tolerable. Thank you for everything, mate. :D See you in April!!

- D.

2:19 pm

Blogger Andrew said...

Hey Daniel!! Yeah I forgot to mention it because I forgot it :P

Your own travel post (the floods one) earlier in the year was one of the funniest pieces of real-life writing I've seen for quite a while, and a number of my friends here in Perth thought so as well. Maybe we should get together and start competing with Lonely Planet.

Don't worry about the hug ... April will suffice quite nicely. Lots of tourism, good food and hugging :D

And that last comment made my day. Thank you. :)

2:19 pm

Anonymous daniel said...

Haha! Yeah, throw a few wacky individuals in a car and amble around the countryside - Sounds almost like a reality TV show idea! Reality TV meets Lonely Planet. Hmm. (We actually did have something like that, where a bunch of people went across Canada in a bus and it was this whole reality TV ratings puller whatever.)

Tourism, good food and hugging sounds great to me.

2:21 pm

Anonymous Shannon said...

It's a pity around here that we had riots instead of "happy drunk". Consequently, an increasing number of towns and smaller cities have been introducing liquor bans. (This year's riots occoured in Raglan. Previously not known for riotious behaviour, but was about the biggest 'out of town' spot that didn't have a liquor ban this year.)

(In Tauranga, they have "Alkatraz" - a "tempoary holding facility" built to cope with the New Year's influx.)

On the whole, it seemed that the drunken louts spoiled everything for everybody.

2:21 pm

Blogger Andrew said...

Wow :/ That's pretty sad actually. The time I get to see that is Big Day Out (a month away now) and other such music events, when people get pushy and shovey when on alcohol and it becomes nearly impossible to enjoy the bands one came to see. I hear a band start kicking up into a heavier, more consistent section of a previously easygoing song and mentally I'm going "oh, no! don't do that! think of my poor feet!!!" :)

2:21 pm

Anonymous Shannon said...

Yeah... it's such people that insist on drinking that generally result in liquor bans.

2:22 pm


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