Happy New Year! From Gaza With Love

Today was the last day in 2010, which means that tomorrow will be the first day in 2011. I never thought I never thought that I would celebrate it like almost everybody around the world does.  Instead of throwing huge New Year’s Eve party with lots of food, drink, and people celebrating the end of a year and welcoming a new one wishing that this year will be full of success, happiness, and great achievements, the thing that everybody craves for.

We, Gazans, don’t really celebrate the New Year’s Eve for a reason or two but mainly because we lack the experience in throwing huge party I believe.

For me, celebrating the end of a whole year and welcome a new one wasn’t on my schedule to be honest. My friend @iBashar tweeted me telling that he would likes us to go out for a cup of coffee as a way to celebrate, and we met one hour later, On my way to Delice, the coffee house we always meet at.

I entered Delice, picked a table for two and sat down, took my laptop out of the backpack, and started reading my timeline, which is supposedly full of tweets in which people congratulate each other wishing a Happy New Year.

Two minutes later, @iBashar arrived, we greeted each other with a handshake and a smile, he sat down and asked, “do you have a cigarette?” so I put my hand inside my backpack an take out the two cigarettes I bought earlier, I gave him one, and put the other between my lips, took out a lighter and lighted both cigarettes.

We started talking about how the last week has been and what’s new with us, we talked about many different things and people then he asked me whether he can call two more friends to come over so that we have an even greater evening all four of us, and I could never say no to this.

Half an hour later, @impalestine arrived, while @iBashar and I had had half of our Turkish coffee cups empty, we talked for a bit more as I haven’t seen him in months since we were both volunteering in a youth program.

Fifteen minutes later, and @hakimzug arrived! And things couldn’t get any better.

We talked about many other things like life in Gaza, Palestine, local issues, our wishes for 2011 and what do we plan on doing during this year.

Suddenly, @iBashar started feeling hungry, and he wanted to buy a piece of cake. Unfortunately, he had no money to buy one, then we all started craving for cake and since we are all broke, I came up with the idea of buying a big pack of biscuits from that supermarket by the corner and we eat it while having coffee.

So he went and bought one! We were very happy of that to be honest, which was really funny too.

Now it’s time for @impalestine to go meet another friend somewhere far, he greeted us and left, and we continued talking and laughing, then he called telling that he forgot to pay for his coffee! “we’re screwed, mates!”, I said, and told him to hurry up and come pay for his coffee as we’ll be leaving too and we don’t have enough money to pay for his coffee.

@impalestine came back to Delice, sat down to catch his breaths then got out the money and we went to pay for it at the cashier. Because I go to Delice on a daily basis, the guy at the cashier makes me a 20% discount, which is good!

After paying for coffee, we were happy with the discount, and we stood by the walking side talking waiting to the moment to say goodbye and go our separate ways home, and all of a sudden, @iBashar picks up something on the asphalt near to my foot, “it’s a 20!” he said with a loud laugh. We all laughed and gave him that ear-to-ear smile.

Fearing that he’d run home with the 20, I grabbed him by the arm not letting him go, we shared the 20 then decided to celebrate! “This is a gift from Allah for the new year” I said.

I suggested that we go celebrate by having some falafel sandwiches then we go home, and we walked to a nearby shop to buy some sandwiches, but none of us liked the shop, so we kept walking as I told them that I know this area very good and there’s a very good falafel shop nearby.

The closer we walk, the clearer it became, the shop was closed! We kept walking to the next one, which was around 40 meters away, which was closed too.

“What kind of luck this is.” I said, feeling helpless while the urge to have falafel for the last time in 2010 grows stronger inside me, then I remembered a new shop that opened recently just around the corner, we went there and it was open. “We’re going to eat, finally! Alhamdulillah” so we ordered for four curry chicken sandwiches, and we sat on a table on the walking side and started talking about how lucky we really are, starting with 20% discount on coffee, finding the money, and having dinner for free now!

To all of us, celebrating a New Year’s Eve couldn’t get any better, so the sandwiches arrived and we started munching like if we were starving for the past 10 years! Taking pictures whenever possible posing while eating.

@iBashar, @hakimzug, me @nelkhuzundar, and @impalestine

Once we were done, we grabbed that pack of cigarettes @iBashar has bought on his way to Delice to meet me; we opened it to find only four cigarettes! We lighted them, smoked them, threw them, then each went his own way home.

@iBashar, @hakimzug, me @nelkhuzundar, and @impalestine

We really had a blast, partying on our own terms, the four awesome of us.

Nader K.


6 thoughts on “Happy New Year! From Gaza With Love

  1. Yes, Nader. Can’t agree more! That was a very unexpected celebration. Everything just went perfect. A new version of the Theater of the Absurd? Who knows. Let’s start recalling it with broad smiles.

  2. Man, that’s really AWESOME! Coolest new year’s eve celebration EVER..
    At least cooler than mine, paying tons of money so I get banned from smoking sheesha or even clapping :)..
    Good for you, guys! And Happy New Year.

    1. Thank you! i am really glad you liked that. And I am sorry for what you’ve just said! haha
      Happy new year to you too.
      Thanks for passing by and i hope u enjoy your stay here 🙂

  3. I was in Gaza on New Years and I remember it was freezing and raining most of the night, so I’m impressed that you guys got so much done! Six months too late, happy new year!

    BTW, it’s really interesting to see how y’all pass time in Gaza. Arab guys here so much less creative… hookah and cards, every night. Arab girls are the same everywhere: home before maghrib lol

    Please post more like this, all of us in the outside would love to know more about your daily lives..

    1. Haha! Poor creatures 😛 Most of us here are creative (guys and girls) because we’re always terribly bored and there’s literally nothing new to do, so we come up with things to spend good time.

      Will sure do, actually, the majority-if not all- the posts on my blog reflex daily life and thoughts of my own and/or inspired from what I hear/see here

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s