In a few days Icelanders will celebrate the end of the current used-up year and ring in the spanking new one - in the way we usually do - by shooting fireworks. The urban areas will smell of smoke and brimstone for a while, at least for the time it takes the red fog from the explosions to lift. The wooden sticks and paper litter which constitutes as fallout will also be quite visible for some time, even making appearances all throughout the remaining winter months if engulfed by snow.
It is funny what you get used to - in my mind your own personal fireworks are an absolute must on New Years as it is what I have come to associate with the celebration throughout most of my life. We tried to introduce this love of fireworks in Canada but ended up putting fire to an old tree in the yard of a retirement home for nuns who have hopefully forgiven us our lack of tree trivia knowledge. To save you this same disgrace and police involvement please be aware that a very dry tree with no leaves is most likely dead and will catch on fire if a large burning pinwheel is nailed to it instead of to a fence as recommended. Actually the general lack of trees here is probably the reason why public fireworks are allowed and not banned as in Canada where trees outnumber the grains of sand on the coutries vast coastlines.
But if you were wondering what it looks like here on New Years, here you go - seeing is believing and if wondering when to visit this might help you make your mind up, please note that none of the fireworks seen in the clip are from the city itself or any organisation, this is all from regular citizens. I need not mention how much kids love this, in particular boys:
To one, to all - Happy New Years and may 2011 bring you good health and prosperity.