The old year is winding down and the new one is approaching. We thnk it’s the perfect time for a touch of levity before all of us head back to work in January. So below are ten “unique” ways of welcoming the New Year, according to the travel site of the British publisher, Telegraph Media Group:
- Great Balls of Fire – In Stonehaven, Scotland, revelers parade through the streets swinging blazing balls of fire around their heads in a custom with roots traced back to the Vikings (Braveheart would be proud).
- Undercover Color – In a variety of countries, from Turkey to Mexico to Chile, brightly colored underwear is worn under the New Year party outfits in an attempt to bring love in the next 12 months.
- Calling Dr. Doolittle – In Romania, farmers try to hear their animal talk in a ritual which signifies good luck for the coming year (or it may signify the urgent need for some counseling).
- Grin and Bear It – Again, in Romania, revelers wear bear costumes and furs and dance at different houses to keep evil at bay (What’s with all the animal imagery in Romania???).
- Going Nowhere Fast – In Colombia and Ecuador, people walk around the block with an empty suitcase to signify a coming year of travel (and incredibly cheap travel as well).
- Pucker Up – If you’re in Venice, Italy, on New Year’s Eve, you might find yourself in a mass kiss-in. At midnight, thousands kiss in St. Mark’s Square, with nary a drop of mistletoe in sight (Don’t forget the ChapStick).
- Playing Possum, Literally – New York City may think they have the celebration covered with their Times Square ball drop. But that pales in comparison to Brasstown, NC, which has the “possum-drop.” A transparent cage containing a live possum is lowered over a noisy crowd as it cheers in the New Year. Not surprisingly, Brasstown is considered the possum capital of the world (and maybe the roadkill capital as well).
- Sour Grapes – In Spain, people stuff 12 grapes in their mouth, one for every chime of the clock at the New Year’s Eve countdown (I have no idea what this signifies, but watch out for the pits).
- Out with the Old – In Johannesburg, South Africa, people take this remark literally, throwing old furniture out the window as a way to start the New Year fresh (and force instant remodeling).
- Even More Out with the Old – How would you like to spend New Year’s Eve by your relative’s graveside? Me neither. But in Talca, Chile, revelers by the thousands go to the cemetery and sit by family gravesides surrounded by candles while classical music plays.
We here at AmeriQuest Business Services wish all of you and yours a very happy and very safe New Year.
What are the notable New Year traditions you, your family, or your friends practice? Let us know and maybe you’ll make next year’s list.