2018, here we come! Although people all over the world are celebrating the coming of 2018, people in different countries have different traditions in celebrating the new year. In some countries, people are also following a different calendar, in which the new year has a different date. Following are the ways people in different countries celebrate the coming of their new year.
German has the custom of dropping lead into cold water and let it melt. The way it looks in the cold water may predict for them how their future would be like in the new year.
There would be celebrations throughout the New Year Eve. People may join public celebrations featuring famous singers and musicians, or invite their families and friends to their homes and have festive feasts. German also has the bizarre tradition of watching a black-and-white British comedy “Dinner for One” on New Year Eve.
The Chinese New Year follows a Lunar calendar, which is related to the time of the solar year and the moon phase. Therefore, the specific New Year date differs each ear, usually in between mid-January and mid-February. Also called the Spring Festival, the holiday season runs for 15-20 days. Many people would post celebrating couplets and colorful displays on their doors and windows, and elder members of the family would give red packets filled with money to the younger members.
In Brazil, when New Year comes, people have the tradition of wearing clothes with white as the dominant color, which represents peace and is believed to have the power of driving the devil away. Other colors may also appear on clothes, and different colors represent different wishes: green denotes good health, red denotes romance, and yellow denotes wealth.
Believing in Iemanja, Goddess of the Sea, people in Brazil would throw flowers in the sea and light candles on the beach, giving thanks to Goddess and ask for the blessing for the new year.
In Japan, people would visit temples or shrines during the holiday season, and pray for good health in the coming year. In temples, bells would chime 108 times.
During the holiday season, people in Japan would decorate their houses with pine tree branches and bamboos, which emblem longevity and good luck. Some would hang straw ropes on the doors of their housing, which bring good fortune in the coming years.
In France, families would have the feast together, either with their close ones at home or in a large New Year’s Eve party. Champagne would be enjoyed by people on that day. Lovers would also kiss under the mistletoe, which is believed to have the magic of bringing good luck.
People in Thailand celebrate their new year in mid-April. During the holidays, people would throw water towards one another, and water is believed to have the power of bringing rains and good luck in the coming year. Millions of people from all over the world would come and join the celebrations in April. Buddha statues would also be cleaned for prosperity.