Celebrating New Year’s The “Right” Way?

Dan Industry


People around the world ring in the new year with their own traditions.  Here in the US, many of us sit around the television and watch a silver ball drop in New York and fireworks flying over the Las Vegas strip.  Others have specific actions they must do to insure a good new year.  

Atlas Obscura is an online journal of the obscure and unusual things that make our world interesting, or sometimes downright odd.  They say that many people like to hop into the new year.  One gentleman from southern California said that his wife’s family jump over their wallets at the stroke of midnight.  It’s a tradition that insures they have money for the new year.  

Some people keep bread and money on the table on New Year’s Eve. this make sure you have enough food and money for the new year.

Another pair of sisters said they would stand on a chair or coffee table and jump into the new year.  One of the women said she no longer stood on anything to jump but still liked to hop when the clock says midnight.  

Another Atlas Obscura comment came from Spain.  At midnight, when the clock chimes, everyone in Spain has a grape with every bell strike. The TV networks show the clock tower in Puerta del Sol, Madrid, where people gather to welcome the New Year. Eating the 12 grapes at the same pace means you will have prosperity in the upcoming year. That is, if you don’t choke, of course.

And of course, the right meal on New Year’s Day is important.  Lots of people have black-eyed peas, some with greens, others with ham, or hog jowls.  Corned beef and cabbage is popular with some folks from Ireland and Britain.  In Pennsylvania, the old German families have roast pork and sauerkraut for good luck in the new year.  

Atlas Obscura says it’s a Cuban tradition to fill a pot with water and dump it on the street at midnight, but it something others do too, to symbolize throwing out the bad of the old year and washing the new year clean.  Others gather up loose change, and at midnight, make a wish for prosperity and throw it out the front door.  This is to insure you’ll have enough money in the new year.   Or you could just open the back door to let the old year out and the front door to let the new year in. 

However you chose to celebrate – even if it was just to go to bed at your normal hour, and get up to greet the day at your normal time – here’s a toast to a happy and successful 2019.

Celebrating New Year’s The “Right” Way?

I’m Len Wilcox and that’s the Western View from AgNet West and Citrus Industry Magazine, Visit us on the web at citrus industry dot net.

About the Author

Len Wilcox

Len Wilcox is a retired scientist who also ran a newspaper and has written for agricultural publications since the 1980s. He was a regular contributor to California Farmer Magazine. His commentary “The Western View” is a regular feature on Farm City Newsday and AgNet West.