I've literally done nothing all day. In fact, I'm still wearing my dressing gown! I am not very good at doing nothing. I feel terribly guilty, to the extent that I'm not actually enjoying myself a great deal. There's a little voice in the back of my head telling me that this is no way to start a year.
Still, I've watched a phenomenal number of the sorts of films you might expect me to have seen on New Year's Day. Mary Poppins, The Wizard of Oz, Sister Act... Mary Poppins was a particular treat. I'd forgotten what a beautiful song Feed The Birds is, and how much it has followed me around since I was a very young child. We learnt how to sing it at my drama club when I was about 8. And then, of course, Nathan was in the original cast of the show when it went into the West End.
Last night's party was a fine affair. I cooked a little too much food, so we shall be eating baked potatoes and slightly curled-up salads for months to come.
We played the Name Game, or "Meryl", as my friends tend to call it. It's a game where you take it in turns to pull a famous name out of a hat and describe the person without using their name. During the second round, the same names go into the hat and the players are only allowed one word to describe the person whose name they pull out. The last round is essentially a game of charades. You mime the names...
My team did brilliantly badly, and we laughed like drains all night as a result. At midnight, we switched the telly on, and watched the fireworks in central London with the sound turned down whilst all ten of us sang ABBA's Happy New Year at the tops of our lungs. It's a tradition. I must have listened to that song every year since it was released in 1980.
It made me realise how few other tunes there are which celebrate New Year. Auld Lang Sine aside, the only other song I can think of is that infernally dull number in Sunset Boulevard. I think it's called A Perfect Year. Can anyone think of another New Year's Eve song?
Someone has grafittid the alleyway wall behind our house. It's the first time I've ever seen graffiti there, and I'm a little annoyed that I didn't catch the culprit red-handed. It is, after all, right outside my house. I tend to think that graffiti breeds graffiti, so worry that the alleyway is suddenly going to start attracting all sorts of undesirables. Irritatingly, the graffiti is shocking pink. That wall is over 100 years old; it genuinely doesn't deserve to be vandalised so tastelessly! Where's Banksy when you need one? I'm hoping my neighbour Nathalie, who's an artist, will pop out there and create a masterpiece to cover it up!
The alleyway has also recently become a bit of a dumping ground. Someone started semi-grouting the wall about a month before Christmas and has left a load of bags of sand which we keep tripping over in the dark. I pulled two of them out onto the street with the rest of our rubbish but they were replaced a day or so later, right at the bottom of the three steps which lead down into the alleyway. Just about the most dangerous place to find a bag of sand!