Dancing in the New Year

Another new year, another new year’s party at Mags and Harold’s.  It had become a tradition and there was no better way to bring in 1957 than a party with our neighborhood friends.  Our little group had grown and now with Chloe and Francis joining us for the first time, it would be fun to watch them see all the grownups dressed up and sauced up.  As always, Harold took over at the bar and shook up lots of cocktails.  Mags had prepared a delicious spread and I had made a big batch of Chex mix to place in little wooden pineapple bowls around her living room.  I had spent a couple of hours making a double batch while playing the last of the Christmas albums.  I always liked to bring out the albums and make sure they were all played at least once each season.  Nat King Cole sang his last tune as I packed up the snacks.  Mags had a Polynesian theme this year and somehow had found paper leis for everyone to wear.  I was just hoping for no grass skirted party-goers.  I did have a little bloom to place behind my ear for the event.  Elvis Presley was playing on the hi-fi and the rest of the music seemed more of our generation than the last.  We all looked like adults but as the night got later and the dancing got more spirited, we looked more like kids.  It’s not a bad idea to act like a kid now and then and I am pretty sure there is still a little nine year old girl inside of me some days.

Francis looked like he enjoyed the attention of a few of the neighborhood women who thought he would tell them about his spy days in the war.  Chloe was the belle of the ball with the gentlemen all wanting to dance with a French lady.  Most of them had met French and Italian women during the war, but the circumstances were so different that there was little comparison.  Swing dancing was more popular and I could almost feel a change coming in the new year as we finally cast off the conservative years that followed the end of the war.  Steve and I took advantage of the chance to slow dance without interruption until we were cut in by others for the third time.  At that point, Steve grabbed my hand and we danced in the kitchen.  I don’t think Mags minded, but she always hires help for the party, and they may have been a little surprised by the strange couple dancing in the kitchen.

Shortly before 12, Harold began his toasting, and at midnight, the kissing and singing started.  Another new year.  I know I thought a couple of years ago that I was becoming a new me and last year felt like I was an old me.  This year would bring something completely different and I looked forward to seeing what that would be.

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