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Spain: Madrid New Year celebration

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Madrid New Year celebration | Spain | Europe

[Visited: December 2001, January 2002]

For many years, it had been my wish to spend New Year's Eve in Madrid. I had heard rumours that it was a special event, and that the place to be was Sol square right in the centre. So this is where we went at the end of 2001. Added particularity was, that from midnight Europe (or rather, most countries of the European Union), would officially have its own, universal currency, the Euro.

Picture of Madrid New Year celebration (Spain): Sol at New Year, Madrid

Already at 11 o'clock, the square looked pretty full with people, and although it is a main throughfare in the city, it was completely blocked to traffic on all sides. A huge sound and light installation was mounted. A history of the Spanish currency was projected on the Madrid Community on the other sides of the square, and so where the names of the countries participating in the Euro.

Picture of Madrid New Year celebration (Spain): Sol at New Year, Madrid

Huge blue balloons with yellow Euro signs were released from the roof and bounced over the enormous crowd. Euro signs and Euro coins were projected. Then, the 12 chimes announced the birth of 2002. As is tradition, we ate a grape at each chime, and made a wish. Afterwards, the music played was all about money. Surprisingly enough, there were almost no problems at all among the many people gathered. The main problem was the fake champagne which was everywhere over our clothes. Happy New Year!

Picture of Madrid New Year celebration (Spain): Euro balloons over the crowd,  Sol, Madrid
Picture of Madrid New Year celebration (Spain): Sol at New Year, Madrid
Picture of Madrid New Year celebration (Spain): Sol at New Year, Madrid

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