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Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy Early New Year!

The celebrating is over in Sydney (above), but there's plenty of time left on this side of the world.

SYDNEY knows how to turn on a shindig. And the city did not disappoint last night's New Year's Eve revellers, providing a fireworks display with an accent all its own - filled with splashes of magenta, lime and gold, and an excess of sound and light.

As many as 1 million Sydneysiders braved wind and (predicted) rain to welcome 2007. And, as usual, the Harbour Bridge was the hub of the extravaganza.

Someone even beats the Aussies to the new year, though, and it's not just New Zealand. The Chatham Islands are the very first inhabited territory to see sunrise each day. This community of about 700 people observes time 45 minutes ahead of New Zealand. The London Sunday Times sent a reporter there recently, and his account is an adventure at the edge of the world (one where he still manages to lose his luggage on a flight with only 12 passengers):
Chatham Island is the ultimate frontier: if the earth were flat, this would be the edge of it. In fact, it lies beyond the edge: at 44°00’S, 176°30’W, it rests within a kink of the International Date Line...

The greatest draw of Chatham Island is, ultimately, its geographical position. On my last day there, I woke up at dawn. It was a glorious occasion of pinkish clouds and birdsong. There may be six billion people on our planet, but at that moment, I was one of the first to see dawn.
Here's hoping that you and your loved ones have a memorable and rewarding 2007, even if it doesn't start for another 12 hours or so. Happy New Year! [Image source: Sydney Morning Herald]


Chris said...

hey Rob, "Happy New Year", cheers
I missed Sydney

Rob Robinson said...

Thanks, Chris. Happy New Year to you, too! I hope 2007 is off to a great start in Malaysia.