Doreen writes:                       

When Megahan Coffey worked for Vered in her previous job they became friends. Meaghan’s father is caretaker for buildings in Times Square, and from an available office they watch the ball drop on New Year’s Eve. Last year when Vered and family were invited, I promptly asked if we could come too. It didn’t happen because of Covid 19, but the invitation was extended again this year.


Eitan and I were rather apprehensive because of the forecast of cold and rain. Already in the taxi from the airport, while stuck for 40 minutes in a traffic jam just a few blocks from our hotel, we were excited by the neon lights, the  masses of people walking the streets and the feeling of energy.

We are staying at the Edison Hotel just off Times Square. An enormous hotel, 6 elevators, with the atmosphere of a huge railway station rather than a hotel. But the staff are so friendly and helpful making it a pleasure.

On our first night we met with Vered’s family and Oz and Meaghan and her partner Chris together with Megan’s parents Jim and Cathleen. We sat around a huge lazy susan (what happened to the one we had?) and ate copious quantities of dim sum and other delicacies. (see picture)

The following morning the hotel gave us paper bracelets with the hotel’s name on it so that we would be allowed back into the street leading to the hotel. We prepared to post my non-functioning kindle back to Amazon.  “Go down 2 streets to 45thstreet where you can cross over Times Square to the other side”  “Oh no, go up to 49th Street to cross.” All the barriers were up, closing off access to Times Square. At each supposed crossing there were throngs of people waiting to enter Times Square – and this was about 9 hours before midnight! In the end we gave up and went shopping.



We had to meet Vered and Meaghan and Chris on the other side of Times Square, one street down from our hotel.

Our street was closed so armed with raincoats, chocolates, cellphones and folding umbrellas – umbrellas weren’t allowed, neither big bags -
we walked up two streets to 49th Street to cross over to our meeting place. Huge lines of people patiently waiting to enter the
 Square filled the pavements.  Not 49th street. Go to 52nd. No try 56th. 

There were few cars on the road but plenty of bicycle tuk tuks asking  for outrageous amounts of money.
Eventually it began to rain and we found a ‘reasonable’ tuk tuk. He tucked us  into the seats with our paper bags,
zipped down the plastic covering and rode off crazily.

16 minutes later at $5 a minute he dropped us off near our destination (about 150 metres from our hotel!). The barriers to Times Square were obviously being removed as we saw the standing line suddenly turning into a stream of running people: 6 hours before midnight.

With special passes and accompanying security, Meaghan and Chris led us to the available office on the 7th floor in a building in the Square. Vered and Meaghan had been shopping the day before and a delicious buffet lay on the table. While we ate and drank Vered’s famous mojitos and played games and looked out the window, we couldn’t believe that the singers and people below with raincoats and hats had been standing patiently for long hours in the rain. There were no toilets below and one wasn’t allowed to leave the Square. Not for me!

timessquaretimessquarebirds eye view

By 23.20 the rain had stopped and we were accompanied to a special area where we had a magnificent view of the ball about to drop. The excitement was palable and as the countdown proceeded a roar rose from the 1 million spectators.(Click here for a video of the last 5 second count down.) Clouds of conffetti were released from one of the buildings above and everyone was so happy, and in no hurry to leave.


The Rons, Doreen and Eitan, with our grandchildren Dani and Lior


Meaghan Coffey with Chris and Vered, Dani and Oz, the crowd

Eventually we went back up to the office to collect our things while the others tidied up.

The next morning we were expecting the Square to be empty but it was fiull of people photographing the Ball, and confetti was still swirling around in the wind. It was truly An Event and we were most fortunate to have seen this live.

A tick off my bucket list