15 December 2005
End of my vacation, and why I'll skip the New Year's parties
Darlene and I are in the departure lounge at JFK, on our way home. I'd forgotten something I learned on a couple of my previous trips through here: The folks who designed JFK went out of their way to avoid putting electrical outlets anywhere near the departure lounges.
I don't know how they buff the floors.
Oh, I see. They don't.
I've been examining how various kiosks and displays get juice to their cash registers, etc., and it seems they all have to run extension cords to some hidden panel behind a triple-locked door.
Even the TSA's scanners are plugged in via long orange power cables like you buy at Wal-Mart. They are all plugged in behind doors, panels, or curtains in some unseen electrical room the public is not privy to. Apparently, power is so expensive in New York that they don't even want travelers borrowing an outlet to recharge a cell phone.
Which makes me wonder what the nightly tab is for all those lights in Times Square. Last night, with temperatures below 20, you could actually feel the heat coming off the light panels in Times Square.
Trust me, that was the only thing enjoyable about Times Square last night. It was unbelievably crowded with pedestrians and choked with taxi traffic. (But don't try to get an available cab there. There aren't any.)
Times Square is a horrible place to be on a normal weeknight. I can't imagine why hordes of people all want to be there on New Year's Eve, when you have to stand in one place, hour after hour, shoulder-to-shoulder with people who are mostly drunkjust to watch a ball drop?
As a Cubs fan, I've seen enough dropped balls to last a lifetime. Thanks.
But, then, New Year's revelry in general doesn't really appeal to me anyway. The night the calendar changed from 1999 to 2000, I went to bed about 11:00 and was sound asleep when the New Year came. I wonder how many people can say that?