- Holidays and Celebrations
8 Different ways to celebrate New Year's eve
Every country has its different traditions to celebrate the coming New Year, so if this year you are looking for a new way to welcome it, here are some suggestions from different countries around the globe.
In Spain, it is traditional to gather with friends or family for dinner and celebrate the New Year by eating 12 grapes as the chimes sound at 12:00 am, having one grape with each of the chimes that sound during the last twelve seconds right before entering the new year, and then raising a toast for the new year with champagne. If you can eat all the grapes in time, it is thought to bring you a good and prosperous year.
The Italians begin the "notte di Capodanno" with a traditional dinner in which lentils are essential if you want to have a new year filled with good fortune. This night, many women receive red lingerie as a gift, which allegedly will bring them luck in the year to come. In some places, as in Rome and Naples, it is also traditional to throw old things out the window, as a way to symbolize an end with the past and the desire for a fresh new start.
The Danish use this date to show their loved ones how much they love them, and they do it by going to their homes and throwing old dishes that have accumulated over the year that ends. The bigger the number of dishes on your doorstep, the more friends you have.
The New Year's Thai is called Songkran and lasts three days, from 13 to 15 April. People throws buckets of water at each other with the desire to attract rainfall for the coming year. It is also sign of good luck to free birds from cages, or fish from their tanks, by throwing them into the river.
The Australians like welcoming the coming year with noise. When the clock strikes midnight, whistles begin to be heard everywhere, car horns, claps and church bells. As their new year begins in summer, on 1 January they spend the day in the countryside or the beach making picnics and practising surf.
In Mexico, there are several traditions, one of them consists in eating 12 grapes representing 12 wishes. Other remarkable traditions are: spreading lentils around the door to your house as a sign of abundance; sweeping outwards from the house, so that all bad things of the past year leave the house; using red underwear if you wish to have love in the new year, or yellow underwear if you want to attract money for the coming year.
In Scotland, the new year or "Hogmanay" is celebrated in some places in a peculiar way, which consists in setting fire to a barrel and rolling it across the streets in flames, which allows the beginning of the coming year. There also exists a tradition called "first footing" according to which the first person to enter your home on the first day of the year determines the fate of the family over the following twelve months.
To celebrate the new year in Brazil, people in white clothes go to the beach to see the fireworks and then they jump over seven waves, as it is said that it will bring good luck for the new year. They also throw flowers on the water while making a wish.
© 2012 Katia De Juan