Before ushering in the new year, our last meal of 2011 was thin crust sausage pizza at Amore. My mom and brother joined us. Mike debated celebrating on the strip but ultimately decided to avoid the crowds and hang with us. We kicked off the night at the house drinking beers from around the world: Russia, Jamaica, Mexico, Guatamala, and Honduras. We cheered on the new year for the east coast and the midwest. Then, we left for the desert.
We went up to the ridge at the end of Sunset Rd. expecting to be the only one, but there were three vehicles already there. Two separate groups. We set up near the larger group that started a fire, they were from Nellis AFB, and later we learned it was Preston & friends, we met Preston over a year ago, off-roading with Vegas Valley 4-wheelers. Small world. Even though the temps on the strip were in the 40's, it was 29 on the mountain. Chilly, but the fire helped. I set the canon on the tripod to take video, it moved and my panoramic view suffered. Oh well. I took a few photos with the Nikon, but I was too chilly to hold it steady to capture the fireworks. I got a few ok shots.
We were going to light of fireworks of our own, but Preston had a wee one and a pup we didn't want to scare. We thought we'd stop on our way back home to an open area, but we decided to return another (warmer) night. Frank had to be up early for work on the first so we crashed after tuning into the local news firework footage. Meanwhile, Mom and Mike went out to the Orleans to try out their luck in the new year. Neither experienced big wins, but luck seemed to favor my mom.
It was a low-key way to welcome 2012, but I like it that way. There is something special about nearly 500,000 people partying their asses off 10 miles away while we enjoy absolute peace and the island of glittering lights & neon in the sea of utter darkness... Only to be broken up by the booming fireworks as the clock strikes midnight.