After a late dinner, we made our way down to the main area and walked down another closed off street lined with food vendors. We bought a couple more snacks and then went down to an area where tons of people were setting off lanterns. Unlike the temple ones though, people did not write blessings on these, but still, very cool. Literally, 10 to 15 lanterns were launched every minute or so.
We made it back to the main square at about 10:45 PM and then mixed in with the packed crowd. I mean, it was packed. The stage people were having fun and then about 10 more minutes of chatter that we could not understand, a popular Thai rock band came out and played for about 45 minutes. Very cool and pretty good music. The whole crowd was rocking to the songs and I guess the lead singer is sort of a teen heartthrob or something like that.
At about 10 minutes to midnight, the hosts came back our and then the governor of ChiangMai came out to thank everyone for celebrating NYE with the citizens of ChiangMai and the crowd erupted again! Next thing you know, we are counting down…. and the fireworks start shooting off. The firework display was literally right over our heads!!! I try to imagine this happening back in the US and know that it would never fly due to safety concerns, but it was really really awesome to stare up at the fireworks directly above us in the sky! Anyways, in short… that was NYE in ChiangMai!