Saturday, January 29, 2011


This morning my roommate Angie came into my room and said, "the fire alarm is going off in the hall. Do you think we should go down?"

1st instinct: no. I'm sleeping.
2nd instinct: Eh, maybe we should check.

Angie volunteered herself to bundle up and go outside to see if the fire alarm was legitimate (looking back, I have no idea why it wouldn't be authentic. It was 8:00am. Not exactly the perfect time for a drill. And there are no crazy high schoolers trying to be annoying on purpose running around the building). When she got to the bottom of the 8 flights of stairs, she called us and confirmed that there were lots of people outside and that we should come too.

I dragged myself out of bed. Ick. I wore long johns to sleep last night, so going in my pajamas was the worst idea known to man. I took the time to change my clothes, and as I was changing I started to panic. What if there were an actual fire? What if I lost all my stuff? My clothes and everything? I dressed carefully, choosing only my favorite things to wear. I ended up with light-colored jeans, my BYU basketball shirt, and my BYU sweatshirt. I guess we can see where my priorities are. Yeah Audrey, wear a bunch of stuff that can be replaced. Good idea.

In further preparation of panic, I put on my high school class ring. I threw my three favorite journals, my Book of Mormon, my teddy bear, and my computer (along with other necessaries from my purse: iPod, camera, keys, phone, wallet, etc), into my backpack. I was the last one out.

But as I reached for the doorknob... the building went silent. The alarm had turned off. I retreated my hand, turned around, put my pajamas back on, and now I'm back in bed. Except that I started thinking about this post, so I had to sit up and pull my computer out of my backpack.

Was my panic odd? Maybe. But it is classic Aud. Like, of course I would pack all my favorite and most valuable things into my backpack in a moment of rush. Of course.

When I was about 9, I for some reason (I have yet to find the source) became deathly afraid that my house was going to burn down. I used to have nightmares about it. I seriously used to have dreams that Nazis came to take me and my family away, and then for good measure, they would burn everything.

I was terrified. Absolutely terrified. My mom tried to remedy the situation. She bought a fire escape ladder and put it in my bedroom closet. She taught me how to use it in case of a fire. It only made things worse. (and one time, Elise and I tried to use it to escape from Andrew and Stephanie when were babysitting. We got in major trouble for that one. Apparently we're not allowed to climb onto an icy roof in an attempt to run away from home) There was a picture on the front of the box of some children and their mother climbing down a ladder with threatening fire bursting out of the bedroom window they had climbed from. The kids looks so calm, and I just thought they were nuts.

Then my mom planned a family home evening where were learned about fire safety and did fire drills from all different situations in our house. We mapped everything out and everyone got a job. We practiced and practiced.

You would think this was a great idea. You know, be prepared. My 9-year-old brain, however, thought that all the practicing and preparation just meant that a fire in the house was a legitimate concern and that it was actually going to happen, and soon. My fears reached a climax that night.

I packed all of my favorite things into my backpack and slept on the floor of my parents room, with the backpack on. I got up for school the next day, and took it all with me. If the house was going to burn down while I was at school, It was not going to lose my vtech learning computer or my new 100-color box of crayons. Or my tweety bird.

I guess that today I was reminded of that terror from years ago. I am still terrified. Illogically so. I think I may place too much value in random material things. Like I'm too sentimental about stuff. But then again, I don't see any problem in trying to save my journals and scrapbooks. Or my favorite BYU sweatshirt. And my class ring is irreplaceable.

And the conclusion is that I need to either be more prepared, or not care as much. Because honestly, if the fire today would have been at all threatening, I probably would have lost things more important than my backpack of valuables.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Best public service announcement ever.

Thursday, January 27, 2011: DC Public Schools will be closed.

I get to sleep in tomorrow. I love the snow. Love it.

Monday, January 24, 2011

take that.

Video Courtesy of

I'm getting nervous for Wednesday's game--- #9 BYU against #4 SDSU. This video made me feel better.

And check out this article:

Monday, January 17, 2011


BYU boys basketball. #9 in the polls, ya'll.

And I went to Philadelphia today and basked in the glory of Independence Hall and all sorts of history nerd stuff.

My roommates. Hanging on the fence by Benjamin Franklin's final resting place.
And I planted a mini chia pet that my mom gave me. My roommates made fun of me.

And I spent the entire 3-hour drive home from Philly singing at the top of my lungs to my favorite songs. And I don't even think that the other people in the car were annoyed.

AND I hung up my Justin Bieber poster.

My semester is looking up.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Yeah. This happened.

This week, in the DC, I had a little setback.

I had some wrist pain on Saturday... that increased exponentially until Monday morning when I could no longer move my wrist- or fingers- because of the pain. And I actually shed tears.

I went to the doctor and after two hours of waiting, explained my situation to the doctor:
"So, I don't know what happened... my wrist just started hurting. I didn't injure it. The only thing I can think of is that I moved and pulled some heavy suitcases all week last week. Oh, and I broke that wrist when I was 6. And, did I forget to say that it hurts like, really bad?"

The doctor was of very little help. The x-ray said nothing. After my 4-hour visit to the urgent-care clinic that I found online and found a ride to, the doctor sent me home with a brace, a prescription, and no information.

(sidenote: I hate taking medication. I feel like medicine (not antibiotics) doesn't actually make you better, it just makes you feel like you are better until you actually get better. And I don't like it when I feel fake better. I don't like not knowing what it's supposed to actually feel like. I know that's weird.)

So I got home and didn't fill my prescription. I iced my poor wrist, took some ibuprofen, and took a 2-hour nap.

The next day it hurt worse. I didn't sleep that night, you know, because it hurt so bad. And it was dang hard to get ready in the morning. Try putting a ponytail in your hair with one hand. Imagine me, Audrey, using one hand to put my nylons on for my first day of student teaching on Tuesday. Imagine my 5 whole minutes of agony. And then imagine going to some inner-city schools in Washington, D.C. and meeting intimidating administrators who give your broken wrist a firm handshake. Imagine holding in the scream.

It was a rough couple of days. I even called my brother and cried. Sobbed while walking down the street in Foggy Bottom after my first day. I sat on the metro with red puffy eyes and avoided looking at my fellow passengers.

What the heck is wrong with my wrist? What. the. heck. And besides the heck, what the RANDOM, right?

I gave up the no-prescription-medicine-charade on Wednesday afternoon. My happiness has increased dramatically since then. I slept last night. The whole night. No midnight trips to the bathroom for more painkillers or trips to the kitchen for ice bags.

Improvements of today:
1. I buttoned my pants this afternoon with apparent ease.
2. I carried something.
3. I cracked an egg. With both hands.
4. I slowly texted with both of my thumbs. 
5. I'm typing. Right now. With two hands (one in the brace of course)

Tomorrow my goal is to:
1. Apply lotion to my left arm (with my right hand)

So I'm in a positive, stabilized position at this time. But I think it's fake. My wrist feels better because I'm taking a strong pain killer and anti-inflammatory to stop the swelling (see picture below). So I guess I'll keep you updated on that.
Comparison of Audrey's wrists and hands. TOP: normal hand. Bottom: NOT NORMAL. Notice the two missing knuckles on the bottom hand due to swelling. And the lump on the left side of the wrist that is only slightly visible.

My experience in DC round 2 has been... a little rough at times. I am anxious to see how things turn out.

BTdub, I am still terrified of student teaching.

And there were like 5 large hiccups in my placement. Hopefully (and thankfully) they are overcome. It's been a little bit stressful to say the least. And I have been very, very sad, and very, very mad way too many times. I think I'm generally a fairly emotionless person, unless that emotion is happy, excited, or sincerely content but sleepy. It's been a ride. A wild ride. :)

But I love love love my roommates. They are Jetette Super Great. Aimee is my room-roommate. We have some great pillow talk, which I love. And all the girls support my ice cream addiction. Last night, when I was having such a hard time, my girls went down to the convenience store in the basement of our apartment building and bought me a pint of Red Velvet special edition ice cream, and then we sat in a circle and talked it all out.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


One of my new roommates has the last two seasons of Boy Meets World on her computer. I don't know how or where she got them, because those seasons are not available on DVD. BUT, we have been watching season 6 the last couple of days. All 6 of us. We huddle up in our freezing apartment that still doesn't have furniture (hopefully Tuesday), and set up a computer and speakers on a chair so that the view is good for everyone. And see watch several episodes in a row. And with every on I proclaim, "OH! I love this one!!" And everyone is amazed that I know what episode it is just by the title.            

It's heavenly bliss.

Boy Meets World is one of those things that my family loves. We quote BMW more often than not. And watching the show here in VA is like getting a sweet taste of home. There's nothing like a dose of Eric Alison Matthews. Nothing.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Special Collections, in memoriam

I worked in the L. Tom Perry Special Collections in the Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University for about 18 months. I loved working there (almost all the time). I made a lot of friends and I learned a lot of really cool stuff. I love looking through the collections, and I love organizing things. AND, I loved working for my supervisor, John Murphy. I think he might actually be the nicest guy in the world. So, I want to pay homage to my ex-employers.

My favorite collections (that I worked on)
1. The George Q. Cannon family correspondence
2. Nellie Gubler family papers
3. Clinton Larson papers
4. That one collection of WW2 letters from Hunkey and Punkey

 My work buddy was Liz. Liz Ballif. My very favorite person to talk to in the morning. We had a blast together. And seriously, she was amazing at listening to all my weird and often boring stories. For hours.

All summer long we worked almost 8 hours a day. We sat there and read obituaries or worked on whatever our assigned collection was, and chatted away. For hours and hours and hours.

But we did often find ourselves bored and tired of sitting in our little room (put a big emphasis on the word "often"). So we made a list of things to do for "refreshment."

1. walk in place
2. eat raisins (Liz brought them)
3. visit work flows (that's the place you go if you have questions or have a new project to turn in)
4. bathroom break
5. get a drink
6. take a trip to receiving (that's where they keep all the office supplies at the library. We used to go there for post-it notes)
7. Undergo massive reorganization of the storage area and update all our inventory of collections.
8. Take about a 30 second break to check our email (I don't think that was allowed.)

We recorded memorable quotes on post-it notes and stuck them on the wall
Quotes on the wall:
1. Geoff: "You don't know how hard it is to be a boy!" (followed by uproarious laughter) (Geoff was the employee of the century. He ran everything. He knew the answer to everything. Even the curators would refer us to Geoff when we asked them questions. He had been working there for like 5 years. Yeah, super duper senior. And he also came by our office to tell us all sorts of "interesting" things that we didn't actually want to hear about (like ants or the history of typesetting). I adored the boy though. Loved his visits. They were my favorite.)
2. Audrey: "I am the person I am today because of Harry Potter."
3. Liz: "People who pretend they don't like Zac Efron because they want to be different just bug me."
4. Moroni Jensen collection (LTPSC, HBLL, BYU) "The best bridge between despair and hope is a good night's sleep." (this quote was our light at the end of the tunnel. We knew that we could go home from a long and miserable day at work, take a nap, and then be as good as new)

We also have a wall where we put new grammar rules that Liz learned in her English language classes.
AND Liz went through a phase where she loved dinosaurs. So we both enjoyed our share of dinosaur jokes.

How do you ask a tyrannosaurus out to lunch? Tea, Rex?
Why do museums have old dinosaur bones? Because they can't afford new ones.
*stupid* Why did the dinosaur get in bed? because it was tired.
What do you do when a dinosaur sneezes? get out of the way.

and then a Christmas joke:
*stupid* Who do dasher and dancer get to take a lot of coffee breaks? because they're santa's "star bucks!"

(we had to start labeling the stupid ones when we left them for each other on post-its so we didn't try too hard to understand the ones that you aren't supposed to "get.")

And then this school year, we got a new employee buddy in our office. Pete. A recently returned missionary from Orderville, Utah. He is everything that being from a small Utah town implies and more. He was a delight. An interesting delight.  I loved working with Pete.

Some more reasons why I loved working there:
1. I pretty much made my own hours.
2. I came in "late" about every day. It didn't actually matter when I arrived. So I came in roughly around 9.
3. Sometimes the library throws parties for their employees. And gives them presents.
4. I had the opportunity to be on the Student Library Advisory Council for a semester. We didn't do much, but it was fun, and I got free lunch every other Friday.
5. The people in workflows had treats on Friday, and they shared with us.
6. The reference people let me check out books under the name of the curator I worked for and I could take them back to my office to do research instead of sitting in the reading room. (this was work-related research, not personal)
7. We had training meetings every other Thursday at eleven. I went through the same trainings 3 times. But they were entertaining. Usually they consisted of a lot of grumbling, no one answering the questions (except for Geoff, who would cave and give the answer after no one else said anything), and an hour of getting paid for doing no actual work.
8. Sometimes I got to shred paper. Or make copies. I love officey things.
9. My friend Jen Bruton worked at the front desk. So I came in to work every morning and talked to her for like ten minutes before retreating to my office.

Anyway, I loved working at the Special Collections. And it was such a privilege to work there. I'm proud to say that I was an employee there. I am so grateful for that opportunity.


I wrote this a couple weeks ago but forgot to post it. I hesitate to even post it... but I hate leaving posts as drafts. Anyway.

What I loved in 2010:
1. Queen and Mr. Mercury-- like by a lot. I literally only listened to Queen everyday all day from about May to October. I ordered 7 studio albums online and was able to collect and memorize around 120 songs. My favorites, in order of when I loved them, have been: "Don't Stop Me Now " (which started the craze, mind you), "Too Much Love Will Kill You," "Let Me Live," "Made in Heaven," "I Want to Break Free," "Save Me," "Cool Cat," and finally, I settled on "Sail Away Sweet Sister," a little known track title from the 1980 album that I'm absolutely in love with and could still listen to all day. There are about 10 seconds of that song that are pure beauty, and when I listen to it, I repeatedly rewind and listen to that part.
2. "Speechless" by Michael Jackson. It's on the 2001 album, and I am embarrassed to say that it took me until this summer to discover it. And there is hardly any song, ever, that is more beautiful than this one.
3. "Just a Dream" by Nelly. This song dominated my listening for a week. I listened to it on repeat every time I sat down to do, well, anything. It was good to have some Nelly back in my life. Seriously.
4. "Teenage Dream," as featured on Glee. I'm aware that the message of this song isn't exactly pure. But I was instantly addicted to this man's voice. Instantly.
5. Robert Downey, Jr. You remember this one? I watched all of his movies that are not rated R this summer. Mostly with Lynne, but a lot of it was on my own. And I discovered a new movie that I love love love. "Heart and Souls." It is incredibly heartwarming and good for the soul.
6. The BYU 66th Ward. This should actually go at the top. I was obsessed with these guys this summer. We spend every day together. Planning and doing all sorts of stuff. I would always want to go home to St. George and visit my family, and I did on some weekends, but I also dreaded going. Every time I left Provo I missed all sorts of stuff that I wished I had been there for! We had so much fun together, me and my wardies, that I never wanted to leave.
7. Oh my goodness, Adam Lambert. I already loved him from American Idol the year before, but I didn't fully recognize his oddities and talents until For Your Entertainment settled into its home in my iTunes on March 3, 2010. That. man. can. sing. It still shocks me.
8. Lee DeWyze. My love for the guy has come full circle this year. It began in March when I finally started paying serious attention to this last season of American Idol. Lee's version of "The Boxer" stole my heart, and then I found "Beast of Burden" (which is now one of the top played songs in my iTunes). I bought all of his American Idol songs, and then this Thanksgiving, I bought his new album, as I'm sure you are all aware. 
9. Say Anything. It's a teenager drama, made in 1989. Starring John Cusack. Love that guy. This movie is cheesy and ridiculous, but also quite beautiful. I mean, there are certain moments and elements that just kill me. It's the classic boy gets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl again movie, but it's powerful. I watched it twice in a row and then my favorite parts probably 10 times. And then I just bought the movie on Amazon for $3.
10. Holy cow, 30 Rock and Community. Thanks a lot, Paul, for getting me hooked on these shows that have consumed way too much of my time. I'm not a TV watcher, and it took that boy like 2 full years to convince me to watch these 2 shows. But heck, a lot of laughter has come of that fateful decision. 
11. THE HUNGER GAMES. Can these books seriously be real? The Hunger Games and Catching Fire (not Mockingjay so much) are some of my favorite books ever. I like need to investigate them for inherent magical power or something, because they are dangerously ADDICTING. Books like that are way too fun to read. I can't even handle it. Finding books like The Hunger Games and reading them is a breathtaking experience, really. I read The Hunger Games on New Years Day. Yes. I spent the entire first say of 2010 absorbing that book, obsessively. I finished that night and thought I would probably die if I didn't start the second one immediately. And then I dreamed about it. For days. It was so all-consuming and stressful and amazing. I actually started a secret book blog because of my need to talk about this book. To rave about it for no one to hear.
12. The Ocean. Yep, this year I fell in love with something so obvious and amazing as the ocean. We went to San Diego in August, and I fell in love. I just stared at it and swam in it and became all poetic and tried to find words to describe the awe I felt. I wrote about it in my journal for like a week. I couldn't describe what I wanted to. But I kind of crave the ocean now. 
13. I had a distinct realization, this year, of my love for novels that are character driven. Like some modern stuff-- F. Scott Fitzgerald and some Hemingway. Some specific examples of this year, actually, are "A Separate Peace" and "The Chocolate War." I am fascinated by reading about people. I love to see how they react to things and what motivates them. I want to know what they care about and why. And sometimes I get bored with a novel if that doesn't happen. I am a stickler for character development, unless the novel is so fast paced that I don't have time to care (exhibit A: The Hunger Games). Both of the novels I mentioned above are young adult novels that I had to read for my adolescent literature class. And I loved them both. Probably too much. Strangely enough, both books are about all boys' schools. And some of the boys are nice, and some are evil. And the reader has to figure out if the evil is justified and if the evil characters are pitiable. Anyway, it's interesting. And this year, I love character-driven novels.
14. The year has closed off, music-wise, with the new Michael album. Track 6, "Best of Joy," is worth the whole album. I do have to say that when I first bought the album and listened to the whole thing, I was very worried that some of the songs actually may not be Michael (you probably remember the controversy. I wrote about it like a month ago). I got sick to my stomach while listening to it and did some more research on the issue. I played clips of songs that I was positive were Michael for some friends, and then played the ones I was unsure about. They agreed that he sounded different. However, I have now decided that the songs are all authentic and real. If not the Michael Jackson Estate, who can I trust to be the authority on the man? No one. So I submit. 
15. Shopping in general. I loved it before, but the term "shopping" has taken on a whole new meaning. I love online shopping. Why would I go to a store without knowing exactly what I want, when I can figure that out online first? Why? I love shopping in Park City. I love those outlets and buying nice nice clothes for super cheap. I love shopping with Lene and Sarie. They are really good at buying stuff and then convincing me to buy stuff. I just like to wear new clothes, okay?
16. Provo in the summer time. Best friends of ever, perfect sunshine, the moon pool, fireworks, San Diego, paradise.

Of course, I loved other things, like BYU basketball and football, but that is not new and unique to 2010.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Times Square on New Years' Eve EXPOSED

Audrey Spainhower tells all in this, the UNTOLD STORY of a great American tradition: the horror, the misery, and the less than 5 seconds of excitement.

Stephanie and I rode a bus from DC to NYC on New Years' Eve. It left at 8:15am. We got to NY around noon and quickly made our way to the Brooklyn Bridge. That was our one chosen touristy thing for the day. After thinking really hard for about fifteen minutes, we figured out the subway system and mapped out our way to the bridge. We finally made it to Brooklyn but then failed to find the pizza place we had been aiming for. So we ate pizza somewhere else, but still Brooklyn thin-crust and lotsa cheese style.
Stephanie, walking across the bridge
By the time we made it back into the City it was almost 4:00pm-- we came out of the subway at 42nd St, right smack in the prime of Times Square. To give you a visual, if you've never been there before, it looks a little bit like the strip in Vegas and a lot like a cartoon. The marquises and posters are larger-than-life and brightly colored.

We were told by a policewoman that the ball was going to drop pretty much right above where we were standing. We were like, "sweet! Let's just stay standing right here!" But then we figured out that the area where we were standing was going to be closed off for emergency people and camera crews when it got a little later. We were instructed to go down the street and pick a different entrance onto 5th Ave. So we walked down to 45th. They wouldn't let us in. They said the block was full of people already. We tried 47th (amid thousands of other people, mind you). Same Story. We tried 49th, now 7 blocks away from the ball. They still wouldn't let us in. We finally joined a cue to get through the barricade at 52nd street (a mere 10 blocks from the ball), and were smashed to oblivion by the hordes of anxious people for about an hour before they finally let us through (and we were some of the last people allowed onto that block). We rushed through security (they searched everyone's person and bags. That's why it took so long) and found ourselves caged into the block between 51st and 52nd in another metal barricade. It felt like we had been corralled. There was a different oval-shaped barricade set up on every block, and hundreds of people were trapped in every one of them. And there was no leaving the barricades, not even if you were going to pee your pants (actually, I saw them let one girl go. And she had to walk down 7 NY blocks by herself before she was let in to a bathroom), because:

1. First, there was no room to move. Too many people smashed together. So it was hard to get out of the barricade even if the policemen would have allowed it.
2. The policemen were watching, and if you left, you could not come back.

Once we were settled into the barricade it was a little after 5:00pm, and the long wait began. We looked ahead to 7 hours of standing in the corral. So we thought of numerous ways to pass the time:

1. Make friends with the people around you who share in your 7-hour wait misery. We met some girls next to us who were from Georgia and were just adorable. They helped Steph and I be excited because they were excited. We also made friends with a guy who was by himself. He had been separated from his friend earlier (in the crowds) and they couldn't find each other again until they were both corralled into separate blocks. So, he just stuck with us through it all and we talked to him for just about the entire 7 hours. He was an unusual character to say the least. Well, really, the most unusual thing about him was that he refused to tell anyone his name. He didn't make an issue about it, he just smoothly changed the subject anytime anyone asked him for it. And he was asked several times. When I first asked him, I thought he said his name was Eldar, but when I was like, "what?," he changed the subject. So Stephanie and I refer to him as Eldar, Oldar, Elgar, Oldvar, and any other variation of that. To paint a picture of this man, he was almost my exact same age, 6'6", moderately built, from Connecticutt (which he claimed is populated only by "old, rich people who own a lot of land"), is a student at UCONN, wants to be a neurobiologist, went on vacation to Florida once for 4 days and spend $3,000 ("but it's not about the money, it's about having fun."), travels to Europe quite frequently, and has a nice car ("I have to borrow someone else's car when I come to NY. I would NEVER drive my car to my cousin's house in Manhattan."). Notice that the inserted quotes are from Elgar. Last, there was a group of people directly in front of us that we talked about a lot, but we didn't talk TO them. They were from Colorado (fellow westerners), and there were about 5 girls and one man. The girls all wore matching giant T-shirts over their coats that said "CO" on them, and winter hats with animal ears on them. They also wore variations of glasses with flashing lights. The man was obviously dating one of the girls (they practically made-out every hour and Oldar complained about the PDA constantly), but he looked to be about twice her age, and we were all very disturbed. To add to the absurdity, the man pulled out a FLASK from his coat after midnight, drank some, and then passed it to his sweetheart who looked barely over-age. AHEM, Mr., public drinking is illegal in this city. Anyway.

2. We marched in place to keep warm, to stretch our atrophied muscles, and to take up time.

me, sitting down, giving my legs and feet some relief.
3. We sat on the ground a couple of times, for short stints only-- it didn't take long for the asphalt to freeze our butts.

4. We played dumb games with Eldar. Like movie quote or character games. None of them worked very well or for very long because we hadn't seen the same movies. He's a non-Mormon boy and likes the movies that one would predict he does. Those movies do not even fall into my vocabulary.

5. We listened to my iPod. Out loud. We only got through a couple of songs, though, before I realized that having a full iPod battery on the way back to DC that night was muy importante.

6. About every hour someone would say, "well, I guess we could take another picture." So that took up about a total of 30 seconds.

And that's about it. That's as far as the creativity goes. It was really long and cold and boring and miserable. And have you ever tried standing in the same place for 7 hours? I can't even describe the pain in my legs and feet. The bottom of my feet are BRUISED. First from walking all day and then from standing on the damage.
Reference point: you see the shadow of someone's head in the middle of screen? above that head is a pillar of lights. Above that pillar is a teeny little orb of light. That's the ball.
And to top it all off, we were literally 10 blocks from the dumb New Years' Eve ball. And about 7 from the stage where all sorts of people performed that I would have loved to see, namely, Ke$ha, Taio Cruz, and the Backstreet Boys. Yes, my BSB were right down the street and I couldn't so much as hear a teensy note from a song. The ball look to be about the size of a pinhead in front of us, and we could see a tiny little screen below it with things moving around on it, but that's about it.
A really, really, really zoomed in shot.
But I was there. I stood in Times Square on New Years' Eve 2010, and that's something. I've come to a level of acceptance where I'm glad that we went, but only just barely. I still kind of wish we had just stayed in DC and rang in the new year by ourselves, standing on my balcony. But alas, the deed is done.

Anyway, as midnight drew near, there was still only a slight feeling of excitement in the air. Everyone around us just wanted midnight to pass so that we could go home. The countdown started and I held up my camera to film it. I watched the ball drop through my camera, totally missing the real thing. By the time I had realized what I was doing I was too late. The ball the gone, it was 2011, and the fireworks started.
Taken right after midnight.

Stephanie and I found our way out of the barricade and down the street-- we had to walk a total of 18 blocks to our bus. And that's when we started seeing the drunk people, slowly emerging from bars, not to mention the literally ONE MILLION people rushing out of Times Square. One guy threw up directly in front of us. We just held our breath and moved past really fast.

While we were walking to the bus, Stephanie commented, "I wouldn't recommend this to anyone. Not even the people I don't like." I agreed.

We found our way back to the bus and boarded at around 1:30am. We sat in our seats and fell promptly asleep. The bus left at 2am, and I was able to sleep until about 4am. Then I just started getting miserable. My throat hurt and I was exhausted but fidgety. But I survived, and the bus finally pulled into Dupont Circle in Washington at 6:40am. We got back to my apartment in Arlington at 8:00am and immediately got in bed.

And that is the end of our trip to Times Square for New Years' Eve.

I reiterate Stephanie's comment, I would not recommend the experience to anyone. But I add some qualifiers. If you can book a hotel close to Times Square and don't have to ride the bus home after, your experience will improve dramatically. If you are able to arrive in Times Square at like 9am day of and can wait outside all day and don't mind the standing, you will love the night time hours before midnight because you will be in a spot to see the show, hear the music and announcers, and get all the free hats and noisemakers. On those conditions, I recommend the experience. Or if you like doing things that make you hate being alive, then go right ahead and follow my lead.

But even still, I'm grateful for the opportunity. It really is cool. And not too many people I know can say that they have been in Times Square for New Years' Eve. I mean, it's worth something. I glad I was able to do it... I just won't ever do it again.

:) note: please don't interpret this dramatic representation of the experience as more than it is. I like to sound ridiculous and to make things either seem more awful or way cooler than they actually are. In this case, it actually was really awful, but it was still a cool/good experience!