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New Years eve in Spain is called noche vieja (the “old night”), out with the old and in with the new if you will.  First day of the new year today and a time honored tradition in Spain has passed to mark the start of 2012.

At midnight and as the clock strikes 12 to ring in the new year, just about everyone in Spain is doing the same thing.  They are eating one grape for every toll of the clock. 12 tolls, 12 grapes.  You´ve got about 3 seconds per grape and it´s pretty hard to keep up the grape to toll ratio with most of us ending up with a mouthful of partially chewed grapes that you have to force down at the end.  Most families have the TV on and are watching the clock tower at Puerta del Sol in Madrid.  At exactly midnight the bells start tolling and you start eating your grapes.  Some folks “cheat” and use seedless grapes, but I like them with seeds.  Did you get yours down?  Feliz 2012 from Cantabria, Northern Spain!