At first it seemed like the new years eve celebration would be a lonely affair for me this year. With the lockdown going on there were no events of note in the Netherlands to party at and with only 2 visitors per house allowed, and all my buddies seemingly otherwise engaged, my open invitation to come party at my house was left with no rsvp's.
That was until around 18:00 the doorbell rang, and I found my best friend standing in front of the door. As soon as I opened the door he was like a verbal whirlwind and it took me a second to shift myself from "Meh this is gonna suck" to full force "we'z gonna party" so I could keep up and make sense of what he was saying. What it came down to was "You've got 15 minutes to get ready, then we're gonna be picked up and we're going to head to the party!"
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Now normally, with anyone else, I'd be full of questions. Where are we going, who's going with us, what kind of party is it and when are we going to be back? All perfectly normal questions to ask, when someone "invites" you to a NYE party. But the thing is, I know my friend and have been best friends for over 30 years. I know him better than he knows himself and vice versa. So the only reply I gave before hopping into a quick shower and getting into party compatible clothes was "You know I ain't got no money for this!". The only reply to that from him was an angry look that said "really dude?"
It was one heck of a drive, and secretive as if we were trying to contact secret agents like in the movies! Turns out that the guys that were taking us knew a guy that told them there was something going on, gave us someone to contact who told us to go someplace where someone was waiting to tell us a second location where the final location we needed to be was revealed. It was almost 23.00 when we got to where we had to park the car. Now I know my country pretty well, and have crisscrossed it going everywhere and nowhere in my time but I had no idea there was such a large area with such low density of people living in it. But as soon as we got out of the car and started walking we noticed we were far from the only ones heading to the rave location.
We were glad that we could go with the flow of other people. The darkness was almost complete and I was reminded of how many stars there actually in the sky at night when there's no light pollution. We walked for about 15 minutes through almost complete darkness to emerge to a view of an abandoned factory which had been brought back to life with lights, and we could hear the muffled "Thump thump thump thump" of the bassline coming from inside.
Once inside we did our usual "exploration" round covering the venue so we knew what was there, were was what and so on. Just as we came back to the "main stage" the crowd started the countdown for newyear and we joined in. At 00:00 we wished each other happy new year and I don't know if she mistook me for someone else but a gorgeous girl... I guess I should say woman... Suddenly came up to me, grabbed me in a hug, and French kissed me for 30 seconds. Then she said "happy new year", turned around and disappeared into the crowd. Never saw her again.
My friend had noticed me and the woman kissing and as she walked away he came up to me asking "Who was that?" thinking I'd ran into an acquaintance or something. When I replied "I have no idea, never saw her before in my life!" he blinked twice and said "Alright!!" and we bumped fists.
After that we kind of got lost in the vibe, the atmosphere and the music. The music wasn't really our normal preferred style, less hardcore more industrial, freestyle and deep techno, but it had a beat going from 160 to 180 bpm with mostly hard bass kicks so it was bounceable. And that's what I did for the rest of the night. I talked to people I've never met before as if they were life long friends, shared joints with other strangers and basically enjoyed the crap out of myself the whole time.
I don't really recall how but suddenly I found myself back in the car on the way back home. Somehow we must've found each other again and, with me having to be home by 12.00 because that's when my kid came to celebrate the new year, we had made our way back to the car through the darkest darkness I've experienced in a long time.
Due to the lack of room in the car for the 6 people in it, where we had 4 people on the way to the party, I had the opportunity to get to know Cindy up close. She's 21 years old, originally from Dresden but living with her niece in a small town near the city where I live. The ride home was... eehm... intimate shall we say, and I think that besides my buddy no one noticed me and Cindy... getting to know each other. I'm not going to say much more about her, except that I'm meeting her coming Friday to show her my city.
I got home at around 11.00 am which gave me plenty of time to shower and get the coffee going so I was ready for my kid when he arrived at 12:00. We had an awesome day together, which may or may not have included a few episodes of Rick and Morty!
So there. You now know how I made the shift from 2021 into 2022! I unexpectedly had a blast and even scored for the first time in almost a decade! Who knows what might blossom between us in the future but whatever the future brings, I have no regrets!
Thank you for reading this!
Stay safe and stay happy!