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Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy New Year, from Peru!

After a very hot Christmas day, it seems we are going to be in for an even hotter NYE.  It will be my first New Year's Eve ever, that I will not have to wear a huge parka over top of my cute dress.  Today when I went to buy my dress I had to keep that in mind as well since I sweat like crazy all the time here. Not even kidding.  I walk out of our apartment and I just start to sweat.  The lighter and cooler the fabric the better.  I did find a super cute dress with Jules at Saga, and some cute shoes, with Josh at some random Peruvian store on Shoe Street and hopefully they keep me from over heating!  It sounds like Josh will have to work which makes me really sad, but I am going to try to make the most of the evening.  Jules, her son Abe and my friend Sandra are going to the Westin Hotel in San Isidro for a nice dinner and hopefully some dancing after, if I can make it until midnight!

I have been doing some research on the crazy Peruvian NYE traditions and would like to share some of the ones that seem really different to me, but first, I thought I would show everyone some of our photos from Christmas day.  The first one is an example of the Peruvian style Nativity scene that Jules and I found at Jockey Plaza on Boxing day.

Gorgeous right?

Anyway, now onto these wild Peruvian Traditions!  I know they are traditions and are taken seriously here, but I guarantee, some will make you giggle and scratch your head!

  • Wear yellow underwear.  This is supposed to bring you luck and happiness in the following year.  You can also wear red if you want luck,  green if you want money and white for good health .  I don't have any yellow underwear, and since I have love, I will go with green or white.  And my dress has gold on it, does that count as yellow?
  • Eat 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight.  Or try to gobble them down as fast as you can in the first  minute of the new year.  Each grape represents a month of the year and eating them is supposed to bring luck.  Some places I read, said you are supposed to eat them under a table, but I have no idea why. 
  • Stand in a doorway, and throw 12 coins over your left shoulder as the clock strikes 12.  Another version of this says to throw 12 centimos over your shoulder into the street as the clock strikes 12.  Both of these are done for financial prosperity. 
  • Run around the block as fast as you can carrying an empty suitcase if you want to travel.  I really hope I get to see someone doing this.  
  • Put a handful or lentils in your wallet or pocket.  This means your wallet/pocket will always be full of money.
  • Toast to the new year with a glass of champagne that contains gold jewelry.  Just don't swallow the jewelry.
  • Run up and down some stairs at midnight.  This will bring luck.
  • Take 12 lemons and hide them around your house.  As they dry up they will absorb the bad energy of the year.  I am a bit hesitant to do this one since I seem to have fruit flies all over my apartment already for no reason let alone having lemons all over.
  • Burn the old year.  This requires building a life size doll made of old clothes to symbolize the end of one year and the start of another.  Then just set it on fire.  I am hoping that no one in my building or neighborhood tries this one.
  •  Sit or stand on a chair as the clock strikes 12 if you want to get married.
  • Before midnight, get three potatoes, leave the skin on one, peel on completely and partially peel one.  At midnight you need to randomly choose on of them without looking (one site said to put them under your couch) and the one you pick will predict your financial prosperity for the year.  The potato with skin means no money, partially peeled means a regular year and totally peeled means lots of money.  
As you can see, I have lots of traditions to choose from, although most of them will not likely be acceptable at a fancy restaurant.  I think everyone at home should pick one to try in the spirit of Peru.
everyone have a fantastic NYE and an amazing year!

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