A train ride, a ferry ride, some fireworks, friends and a long slow drive home. Most New Years Eves are spent either going to bed or staying up watching tv, not very exciting I know, but we've never made the effort to go see any of the Sydney Harbour fireworks in all of the near 11 years we've lived here.
This year we were invited by some friends to their harbour side family home to see in the New Year. Yesterday morning Donald and I drove both our cars up to East Balmain to find a car park for one of the cars as it was to be our means of escape after midnight.
The Balmain Peninsula gets closed off to incoming traffic midday on New Years Eve, as it is one of the hot spots to view the Harbour Bridge fireworks from, and what a lovely spot it is.
Our friends house is right on the Harbour. So after finding the elusive car park for our old falcon, that wasn't going to cause us to get an expensive parking ticket, we stopped for some lunch and then home. This allowed us the freedom to catch a train into the city to Circular Quay, and then hop on a ferry through the Harbour to our stop at East Balmain later in the afternoon.
It was a very hot 34°C day that became a cool, breezy and lovely evening by the water. Lots of boats cruising around, some with lots of people making the boat sit very low in the water, others just a few in a little runabout and some very lovely big yachts all lit up.
We had planned to leave after the 9pm fire works but it was such a beautiful night, the boys persuaded us to stay until the midnight fireworks. We could see at least 4 different spots in the harbour where the fire works were set off from as well as the bridge itself. Some buildings in the city had fireworks bursting off their roof tops too!
We are glad we stayed, even though it took us nearly two hours to drive what would normally take half an hour. Traffic leaving the Balmain Peninsula was at a stand still, but with the kids asleep in the back it became a people watching expedition as the masses made their way towards buses and the rare taxi that appeared.
Today is a sleepy, hot day and last night seems like just a dream, a wonderful sparkly dream though.
So here's to a Happy, Healthy and Joyous New Year for 2011