There was an atmosphere full of tension, excitement and anticipation as nearly 100,000 people eagerly watched as the hands on Big Ben slowly counted down to midnight, signalling the end of 2022, a tumultuous year for many, and the start of a new year 2023.

                     Standing in the crowd, I could almost smell the exhilaration in the air, surrounded by so many people. Usually, the start of a new year meant nothing to me, maybe I would start (and eventually fail) some New Years resolutions, try to get into my head that I needed to write the new year in the margin and perhaps stay up till midnight watching movies and reading books before waking up exhausted the next day. However, this year was different: I was able to convince my parents to allow me to attend and watch the fantastic and elaborate fireworks display and in doing so I have begun to understand the importance and excitement behind the start of a new year. A time to start fresh, anew without the stress, fears and doubts from the last year hanging over you like an ominous storm cloud, although the start of the school year in September made me think otherwise.

                       Watching the magnificent and awe inspiring firework display, surrounded by the screams and cheers of tens of thousands of people, I developed a new sense of appreciation and understanding of what it means to enter a new year. It is not simply the celebration of the Earth making one orbit around the Sun, but instead a celebration of promise and opportunity of what could come from a new year.