Winter's EveFor one night a year, Lincoln Square in Midtown transforms into a long block party for Winter’s Eve, a massive festive celebration. From the Lincoln Center down to Columbus Circle, bands, Christmas trees and food stands line Broadway – cramming the pavements with tourists, hungry locals and plenty of Christmas cheer.

Or so it seemed…

The night started out pretty innocently. I bopped along to a brilliant brass group and a beautiful Irish band before checking out the huge sculptures dotted around the Lincoln Center.P1130474 P1130481

Dancing tent

Dancing tent

The Lincoln Center

The Lincoln Center

P1130466 P1130468I always expect crowds everywhere I go in New York, but tonight they were particularly problematic – presumably because we had to keep waiting for traffic lights in order to cross the still-open roads. But I decided to ignore the people stepping on my toes and I moved on…

I admired floating paper ghosts and gasped in disbelief as a guy used a hefty drill to craft a delicate Nutcracker from a chunk of ice.P1130436 P1130442 P1130506 P1130511 P1130513

P1130518But then, wooed by the whiffs of rich chilli and cheesy pasta, I decided to stop for a snack. Now, in fear of being libelous, my choice of eatery shall go unnamed. But the (very pleasant) staff served me up a hot cup of delicious – if not a little salty – bean soup, assuring me it was vegetarian friendly. Snacking as the paper ghosts bobbed by, I wolfed it down in a second. Delicious.P1130488
Other food on offer...

Other food on offer…

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Or so I thought. As I walked beneath the light-dotted trees, I felt a deep, unnerving pain. With a few more grumbles, I knew I needed to get out of there. I ran, I hopped, I winced – and somehow I made it back home before the beans came out of my nose.

Hmm. While I went to Winter’s Eve for Christmas cheer, what I actually got was a short temper at the crowds, bruised toes and (potentially) food poisoning.

Meerrryyy Christmas!

My night out ended at the Turner Center - and then in the bathroom

My night out ended at the Turner Center – and then in the bathroom