Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year's Eve

What do people do on New Year's Eve? Well, here are today's thoughts from the "Writer's Almanac" ...
"In Mexico, people eat one grape with each of the 12 clock chimes at midnight, and make a wish for the coming year.
In Venezuela, they wear yellow underwear for a year of good luck.
In Japan, people eat soba because long thin noodles symbolize longevity, and at midnight, temple bells ring 108 times, matching the 108 attachments in the mind that need to be purified before the New Year.
At midnight in Greece, families cut a cake called a vasilopita, which has a coin baked inside; whoever gets the coin will have a lucky year.
In this country, the most famous celebration is in New York City's Times Square, where up to one million people gather each New Year's Eve to watch a ball drop."

and this photo is the 1907 Times Square Ball!

In Pasadena, California where I grew up, the night was spent sleeping on Colorado Blvd., waiting for the following day's Tournament of Roses Parade - most of which I slept though because the Blvd. was definitely party central all night long!

So, what happens in your corner of the world on this last night of 2008?

7 comments:

donna said...

It seems to me that NY Eve is just an occasion to party, not necessarily to celebrate the coming year. Wouldn't it be nice to sit with friends and talk about the year past and what hopes and/or dreams are for the year to come? You know me, I love a party, a celebration of any kind, but today's idea of that differs a whole lot from my ideal. Happy New Year! Or perhaps, rather than happy what we really need is: John 14:27, not whirled peas or world peace, but peace of heart.

ROBERTA said...

that's one of the reasons i love the church calendar so much - the new year begins with the first sunday of advent - a time of reflection on the good news that is coming! i noticed we had a higher attendance at church that day as many who had drifted away decided to return on that particular sunday - a fresh start perhaps?....my prayer is that those who are spiritually on their own this day will decide that this is the year they find a faith community to join with!

and yes, new year's eve is a good reason to party - there are many who will be glad to see this year GO - and you are right donna, world peace does start with peace of heart......what did gandhi say? be the change you want to see in the world!

love ya,
roberta, who will be spending her new year's eve babysitting!

terrelou said...

If you saw the news today you will see the "ball" in New York is made of Waterford crystal triangles formed into the shape of a ball. Hilary and Bill will assist the mayor (or Guliani?) dropping the ball. Where is Caroline? Anyway this is the first in many years I am leaving town. I'm going to my sister's in Oxnard.She won a plasma tv from her company and wants someone to join her watching it. I insisted we watch the parade and USC game ( I am alumni). My daughter is mad because she wants to see her friend in the parade marching in a band. Oh well, you can't please everyone. Have a blessed and safe new year.

brad said...

And in Germany they set off awesome fireworks right at midnight.
This ensures that everybody, everywhere, is awake to usher in the new
year. Normally most folks are in bed and asleep by 10 - they roll up
the streets in Munich around 8 p.m. They ARE Germans, after all...
Happy New Year! - Brad

m said...

And in one country in South America--Peru or Argentina--you pack a suitcase and run around the block while people wave and say good-bye. I remember this from my days of language school teaching at Holy Names. The students didn't really know why they did it, but they said it was pretty funny.
L,
M

Jaliya said...

Nothing out of the ordinary is happening here in the Great White North ... We have a wind chill of around -25 degrees C here tonight ... I'm drinking tea, wrapped in a favourite blanket-sweater, and cruising the Web ... Goodbye and good riddance to 2008, I have to say! Already 2009 feels energized ... I managed to clean the cats' litter box ;-D

kristin said...

In "the South", they eat collard greens and black-eyed peas...it's definitely a "southern thing"...however, I am somewhat surprised (and pleased) to say that I have (however mysteriously) developed a taste for both of these foodstuffs! :)