Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Goodbye 2011 - Welcome Our New Life in 2012

New Years Eve is a big day in our family. Not just because it heralds the end of a very busy (and dramatic) year, and welcomes a new and exciting one... but also because literally it's a busy day for us. A VERY BUSY DAY. Our family - I really mean T-chan - subscribes to the Japanese tradition of oosouji (大掃除), which kinda equates to the big clean. The once a year, everything-must-go kinda clean where you start at the bottom and work your way to the top! The reasons? Well, it's meant to welcome the New Year with a clean environment... I imagine to get rid of the bad spirits from the house. It is a good idea... but believe me, when everyone else is worrying about where they're going to be partying, we're getting sweaty in the cleaning sense. By the time the evening comes, we're just about ready to relax...and sleep. Especially when T-chan is so heavily pregnant... normally she's a super-human-cleaning-machine come New Year... this year was a little more difficult when you're carrying around a bowling ball in your belly! Hubby to the rescue.

Still, we didn't quite get as much done as we would normally do... still, I think we gave it a good crack.

New Years of course means one thing - fireworks. And whilst Adelaide's fireworks would never even begin to rival Sydney (or any other large city I suspect), they are always fun and become very much an experience for the whole family. There are a number of focal points for the evening, and down by the River Torrens in Elder Park is the main one. Around 8:15pm we had finished dinner, and managed somehow to get ready and in the car. About 15 mins later we had found a park (down past St Peter's Cathedral and the Women's and Children's Hospital). Yet what was surprising was that there was still plenty of room to get some great spots... and just a little bit of time to go for a walk too.

There's always a family friendly fireworks at 9pm, followed of course by the main event at midnight. Surrounding the fireworks are a number of shows... centred on the rotunda. This year had a very multicultural feel... including a tribute to Bollywood. Don't ask me... but it was great.

But of course the real show is the fire works... and even though the skies were not yet fully dark, it was still an exciting (early) finale to the evening.... and of course here's the obligatory fireworks photos....

But that wasn't all... we stayed around for the only real touch of Japan from the whole evening... Matsuri Taiko were performing a 20 minute set that was quite fun to watch.... but like most things acoustic, were better to see live.

Actually, like Christmas this was a strange one this year. It's not that we didn't get into the spirit of things, but rather that there were many other things competing in our thoughts. So much will change in the next couple of months. 2012 will almost certainly be a year to remember!

So as they say in Japan, akimashite omedetou gozaimasu, kotoshi mo yoroshiku onegaishimasu! Happy New Year, and it'll be great to work with you all next year (all 0.75 of you)!


  1. 明けましておめでとうございます Looks like you had a great New Year's Eve and 2012 should be a great year ahead for you with the special arrival :)

    Japan Australia

  2. Katya, my wife, asked me whether to go for oosouji or not. I rejected because I had enough of it in my institute; oosouji goes everywhere in Japan!

    Although I do not think oosouji is logical, it is mentally acceptable because of our long tradition. Welcoming new year in a newly-cleaned house give us a feeling of a new start.

    Happy New Year to all four of you!

  3. Muravej... it's definitely a more quaint tradition, but I have to say that your right, it is nice to feel one year is finished, and you can start on a clean page (or in a clean house). Hard work though!

  4. J_A, it's going to be a great year. BTW... do you do oosouji in your household. I have to say it's one Japanese tradition that doesn't seem to survive well outside of Japan from what I hear of our friends situations.