Happy New Year always exhilarates me. I love the thrill, the anticipation of a whole new year stretching out ahead. I long to whirl noise makers, blow curling paper whistles, and beat on saucepans as we did on the front doorstep when I was a child in Kansas City, Kansas, USA. We paused only to hear the neighbors echo us. But no one comes outside to call in the New Year anymore, except in symbolic Times Square, New York, USA; another bit of local culture lost.