That was already the second time that we decided to greet the New Year on the streets of Helsinki. We went to Senate square to see the fireworks.
To be exact, we didn’t really see the fireworks last year because we got there only a few minutes before midnight and couldn’t get through the crowd in time. But this year everything went well. To be honest I wasn’t amazed by what I had seen. I have to admit, maybe it was not the Finns’ fault.
In Hungary, on the 20th of August, we celebrate the foundation of the Hungarian state. It’s like the 4th of July for Americans. This is the greatest national holiday celebrated with day-long festivities. The day always ends with spectacular fireworks above the Danube river in Budapest and also other places in the whole country. It’s also broadcasted by tv channels.
The fireworks on the 20th of August always generates debates amongst Hungarians. It’s always the main topic in media and its size, design, duration and/or its costs are always criticized. No matter what. Although these fireworks, even the worst of them, are always well choreographed, illustrated by some special music, they last at least 15-20 minutes and they are really spectacular. This is what I am used to when it comes to fireworks.
Well, compared to what I’ve seen in Hungary, this New Year’s Eve fireworks in Helsinki looked more like a joke. It lasted only for a few minutes and was not spectacular at all. Oh well, we could survive it though. Opened a bottle of Hungarian champagne – we purchased it from the duty-free shop on our way back from the Christmas holiday – and walked down to the harbor. It was nice to stand there drinking champagne and enjoying the unusually warm weather. I just told myself that if I want to see spectacular fireworks I will go to Hungary. This is not what I expect from Finland anyway. It’s not why I love to live here.