The plan was to meet some friends in the city. She was spending a few days at her friend’s nearby, while I was heading back home in the wee hours of the morning or the following afternoon, so we planned to take separate cars.
We were already running late, so by the time the go-ahead text came through with the party address, I figured it was better to take one car, than two. If worse came to worse, she could always take the train into town and I could pick her up in a couple of days. After some consideration on her end (and a little nudging on mine), she agreed to go together.
I had been seeing her for a little while, but I definitely had a thing for her. She was blonde, beautiful, bubbly, and for some reason, enjoyed my company. We hit the road around 9:45 p.m., figuring to be at the party around 10:30 or 11, if there was traffic.
We were making excellent time until we came to a check stop by Exit 2. The traffic jam meant that we weren’t making the party by 10:30, or even 11, for that matter. By the time we cleared the check stop it was already 10:34 p.m. When the roads opened up, we weren’t sure if we should take the George Washington or the Whitestone Bridge. I went with the GWB, and, of course, guessed wrong.
The traffic was backed up to the toll and, looking over the barrier, I saw nothing but red brake lights shining back at us. We inched closer every couple of minutes, but it was 11:02 p.m. when we finally merged onto the bridge and we were still slammed in traffic.
At this point, my left foot had started jiggling in nervousness. We turned on the radio to hear how long delays would be. There was a three-car accident underneath one of the overpasses. Part of the reality had started to sink in that we probably weren’t making the party by midnight. Actually, we almost certainly weren’t making it.
I only had one midnight kiss on New Year’s Eve, and it was four years ago. I wanted this year to be special, and not just because I actually had someone to kiss for the first time in four years. We were still stuck on the bridge with 10 minutes to, but, although we were going to miss the party, we had a beautiful view of the city from the bridge. With about three minutes left, I looked over at her and smirked. “I’ve got an idea.”
I put the car in park, got out and ran over to the passenger’s side. I opened the door to see her laughing and confused. “What are you doing?” she said. “Just trust me,” I replied.
11:58 p.m. I took her hand and helped her out of the car. “Are you out of your mind?” she said, smiling. “Maybe a little bit.” I closed the door and led her to the front of the car. 11:59 p.m. I stepped on the hood, helping her up behind me. I took another long stride to reach the roof, again, helping her up. With about 30 seconds left, I unbuttoned my jacket, wrapped around her, and waited.
We heard the neighboring cars starting to count down once it hit 20 seconds. I looked at her as the final 10 seconds wore down.
When the cars started honking and the fireworks started going off, we knew that 2015 had officially arrived. I saw the lights reflecting off of her blue eyes and couldn’t wait another second. I cupped the side of her neck and tilted my head to press my lips against hers.
I don’t know if she’ll be my New Year’s kiss in 2016. Hell, I don’t even know if I’ll have a New Year’s kiss in 2016. All I know is that I’ll remember The Kiss of 2015 forever.