New Year's Eve shouldn't just be about welcoming in the new year. It should be about waving adieu to the preceding one. On the Rickshaw Run we like to do this with a spot of cricket and a ruddy great party.
This is Mr Matt's account of what went down.
It wouldn't be a Rickshaw Run without a bit of fun at either end, and oh what fun they've had. First off was the cricket match against a local team. Strapping and cocky Aussies made up the brunt of the team, laughing in the faces of their schoolboy opponents. Keeping to tradition these same strapping lads were soon left crushed and defeated as the children gave them a good lesson in getting thrashed. Better luck on the roads eh chaps?
Brushing off their defeat everyone headed to the New Year's Eve launch party. Tradition Kathakali and martial arts displays took place, much to the amazement of the Runners. Then a veritable banquet of food was devoured. Of course, the bar was attacked. The muggy temperatures meaning that cold beers were greedily consumed at an alarming rate. The dancefloor filled up fast, as did the stage, as dance moves not yet seen before (and some hopefully never to be seen again) were pulled off with fine style.
The big countdown to the dawning of a new year began. Unfortunately nobody really had the right time, and so Mr Peter's countdown speech turned into a surreal seven minute monologue. Before we knew it (well, after seven minutes) it had happened and a firework display like no other yet seen on the Run began. hugs and kisses were abound - I'm pretty sure I even saw a bush shaking in the darkness, but that might have just been a trick of the light. More dancing, more drinking and then...homeward bound.
Disembarking the boats at the other end teams were thrown into a thronging crowd from the huge New Year's Eve celebrations they have here annually in Fort Cochin. Everyone must have said "Happy New Year" to at least 100 people each. Excitement levels were high, and whilst the majority of the people driving the next day headed homeward for some shut eye others carried on until late into the night.
All in all it was a fucking great night that nobody would have forgotten. Well...maybe some did.
If you've not got enough adventure planned for 2015 you've got until January 6th to save £100 on the April and August Rickshaw Runs.