QBC-MONTREAL-L ArchivesArchiver > QBC-MONTREAL > 2007-12 > 1199149726
From: "D. O'" <>
Subject: [MONTREAL] New Year traditions
Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2008 01:08:46 +0000
In my late teens I recall going to a Scottish person's home in Verdun, arriving just after midnight and was told to wait until a dark haired person entered first bringing salt because I had red hair and would not be good luck to the family. Had I been visiting an Irish household I would have been welcomed first as being good luck.
Scotland's tradition: "Visiting friends and relatives immediately after New Year's Eve, in the early hours of the morning of January 1st. First footing after the bells have rung in the New Year is still common - the "first foot" in the house after midnight should be male, dark, and handsome and should carry symbolic coal, shortbread, salt, black bun ( a spiced cake) and, of course, whisky."
When I lived in North Vancouver, BC, people would run out of their homes at the stroke of midnight and start banging pots and pans..... little did I know that was an Iranian tradition!
My Irish in-laws never did this, but it sure would wake the neighbours: "Irish tradition that was carried out to bring in the New Year, involved banging on the doors and walls of the house with the Christmas bread! It sounds daft, but this custom was thought to chase the bad luck out and bring good spirits to the household. It was also thought that this ritual was done in the hope of having enough bread for the New Year."
"In France, New Year's Eve (31 December) is called la Saint-Sylvestre,* and is usually celebrated with a feast, called le Réveillon de Saint-Sylvestre. The feast tends to include special items like champagne and foie gras, and the accompanying party can range from an intimate dinner with friends to une soirée dansante (ball).
At midnight, everyone kisses under the mistletoe** and offers their best wishes for the new year."
Ahhhhh - the French really know how to celebrate, right?
And then there is the "Levée" - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Levee_(event)
God bless you all in this New Year and keep you safe and healthy and to quote my cousins "et le paradis a la fin de vos jours."
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