We (Val and I) met each other in the South of France about seven and a half years ago and this NY’s eve I realised that we have not spend one NY’s Eve in the same country since we have met. Crazy, right?
And it is not because we planned it that way, it is because we are living that way. We call ourselves modern nomads and looking back at the NY’s we have celebrated together, never being in the same country on one of the most important days of the year kind of confirms we are not faking it 😉
The first NY we ever spend together was when we were living and working in Hasliberg, a small ski resort in Switzerland. It was a very memorable experience, because I was the DJ in the bar that night and it was filled with Swiss locals, who were kind of a strange bunch of people, but it ended up being a great night playing the weirdest German Apres-ski songs..
The second NY we were dressed up as a sexy tiger and a monk (yep, Val being the tiger..) walking around the tiny streets of Pamplona in Spain. We were couchsurfing with a Spanish local and she explained us that the only way NY’s eve is celebrated in her city is by being dressed up and she wasn’t lying, the whole city was full of rabbits, vampires, wizards and sexy tigers 😉
The third NY we celebrated in San Pedro de la Laguna in Guatemala, which is a real authentic little village situated in the West of Guatemala at the side of a beautiful lake. We spend a couple of months there and lived in a small apartment, where we were couchsurf hosts ourselves to give back to that amazing community and had one of the best times in our lives.
The forth year we spend in our ‘home’ country Belgium, mainly because we were eagerly awaiting the birth of our first child a couple of days later, in the end she decided to stay a bit longer in my Val’s belly and was born on the 15th of January. We partied at a friends house and stayed out quite late, hats of to my pregnant lady!
The fifth year we spend in Austria on a big field surrounded by huge mountains with only six people and we saw fireworks all around us for more than two hours. It was like a symphony of coloured lights, just beautiful
The sixth year we spend in Germany and this time, we were on top of a mountain peak looking over the valley being highlighted with fireworks. Another unforgettable night.
The Seventh celebration (just two days ago and the main focus of this post) we spend in Scheveningen, a town at the coast in The Netherlands. We came here to test our new mobilhome, not really knowing how they actually celebrate the changing of the year and when I arrived at the beach, the first thing I noticed were these two huge wooden towers and I thought to myself what strange kind of looking pieces of art are these? They reminded me of the tower of Babel for some reason. Little did I know the plan was to set them on fire at midnight. Yes, on fire ?!! I have some friends who live here and they told me that building the towers has become a tradition over the last ten years and every year they get bigger and bigger. This year they were over 40 meters high! I had a bad feeling about this, but the local people seemed to think this was a good idea…
I must say it was spectacular to see the towers burn and you could feel the heat from far away, but it was also a very surreal experience, especially with the changing climate we are living in. It is crazy what we as humans can ‘achieve’ and pretty sad if I think about all of the pollution this one event has created. Besides that, this time, they went overboard and the fire caused multiple little fires in the city, setting bikes and cars on fire. Because of the wind there was even a fire wind hose at one point. A house had to be evacuated and they had to keep the tower of the church (and other high buildings) wet during the night with helicopters dropping water over them, so they would not catch on fire..
The reason why they started building these towers, is because of a rivalry between two little towns about who are toughest of them all and it has led to this.. The town was even scared not to let the battle of the highest tower happen, because of riots. I think next year they will have to adapt their tradition, just a tiny bit… One thing is for sure, I won’t be here to witness it and I have no idea in which country I will be…
I wish you all that you can accomplish what you set your mind to this year and hope to see you on or offline!