Celebrating New Year 2010 in Barcelona, Spain

Happy new year 2010, everyone!!!

I’m in Barcelona, Spain at the moment, welcoming 2010 surrounded by the Spaniards and the winter cold. Brrrr… With a little plan, I ended up celebrating New Years Eve in Plaza Catalunya, together with thousands of people who gathered there with a plastic glass of wine in one hand and a bag of 12 grapes on the other. That’s how Spanish celebrate New Years. When the clock bells 12 times, counting down the new year, they eat the grapes one by one and drink the wine, while making wishes for the year ahead 🙂

It was pretty messy in Plaza Catalunya last night. So many people tried to get in to the center of the square, but there were some police lines, in which police checked everyone’s bag and made sure that people only carry 1 cup of alcohol, not a whole bottle. However, I don’t think it worked that well since I saw many people walking around with a bottle of wine in their hands and they seemed already drunk by midnight! 😀

I think it might be the busiest night for the police officers in Barcelona, since so many people were hammered. They walked around happily with group of friends (sometimes running around, too!), singing some Spanish songs or just humming loudly (like in football matches). Restaurants and bars were full, yet, people were still queueing!
Las Ramblas, the most famous street in Barcelona, was jammed with thousands of people. You could barely walk. Wow. I felt like I was in a busy club! 😛 People were dressing up from head to toe, some of them with some party accessories, such as blinking sunglasses (yes, it was midnight), party hats, trumphets, etc. Chaotic, but fun.

At one point, me and Andy decided to walk back to Plaza Catalunya and choose to walk in a small street adjacent to Las Ramblas since it was impossible to walk in that busy street! It was getting colder and the wind got stronger. Brrrr…

At the end of the night, we ended up drinking a big glass of Sangria in Las Ramblas (yes, we made it!). It was the BIGGEST Sangria glass I’ve ever seen, easily filled with 1 littre of Sangria. The bar, which is part of Husa Oriente Hotel in La Ramblas, claimed that it’s the best Sangria (in town? in the country? they didn’t mention it). I’m not sure if it’s true :p, but it was tasty :).

That was my new years experience in Barcelona. No big party in a club, but it was as busy and as cramped as being in a big club :p. No big fireworks as it’s not a part of Spanish tradition.

I wish you a wonderful year ahead, full with new adventures, excitements and sweet surprises!

And I thanked God for all the blessings in 2009, for being so kind to me to give the time and opportunities to travel to beautiful places in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, made it back to Kuala Lumpur at one point, too, Singapore (of course – let’s not count that since I lived there), Indonesia, England and Spain. Plus, diving in some of the world’s best dive places: Komodo (Indonesia), Raja Ampat (Indonesia), Bunaken and Lembeh Strait in Sulawesi (Indonesia), encountering Mola-Mola in Bali (Indonesia), dive all over places in Thailand (including Similan Islands), etc etc. So many adventures, so many new experiences and so many beautiful things, all happened in 1 year! Wow. He’s so generous, isn’t He?

And I wish that He’ll pour his blessings to my family, friends and loved ones. Also for the less fortunate people in this world… and hope the angels will guide us, whispers their wisdom words whenever we need them, and protect us in every single step we make each day, throughout 2010. Have a wonderful one, everyone!

With love,

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