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THE VOICE OF INTERNATIONAL LITHUANIA

22 September 2017
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HAPPY NEW YEAR!


Text: Saulene Valskyte

In Lithuania Christmas Eve is a family event and the New Year’s Eve a great party with friends!

Lithuanian say "Kaip sutiksi naujus metus, taip juos ir praleisi" (the way you'll meet the new year is the way you will spend it). So everyone is trying to spend New Year’s Eve with friend and have as much fun as possible.

Lithuanian New Year’s traditions are very similar to those in other countries, and actually were similar since many years ago. Also, the traditional Lithuanian New Years Eve party was very similar to other big celebrations throughout the year.

The New Year’s Eve table is quite similar to the Christmas Eve table, but without straws under the tablecloth, and now including meat dishes. A tradition that definitely hasn't changes is that everybody is trying not to fell asleep before midnight. It was said that if you oversleep the midnight point you will be lazy all the upcoming year.

People were also trying to get up early on the first day of the new year, because waking up late also meant a very lazy and unfortunate year.
During the New Year celebration people were dancing, singing, playing games and doing magic to guess the future. People didn't drink much of alcohol, especially was that the case for women.

Here are some advices from elders:
- During the New Year, be very nice and listen to relatives - what you are during New Year Eve, you will be throughout the year.
- During to the New Year Eve, try not to fall, because if this happens, next year you will be unhappy.
- If in the start of the New Year, the first news are good – then the year will be successful. If not – the year will be problematic.

New year predictions
- If during New Year eve it's snowing – then it will be bad weather all year round. If the day is fine – one can expect good harvest.

- If New Year's night is cold and starry – look forward to a good summer!

- If the during New Year Eve trees are covered with frost – then it will be a good year. If it is wet weather
on New Year's Eve, one can expect a year where many will die and dangerous epidemics occur.

- If the first day of the new year is snowy – the upcoming year will see many young people die. If the night is snowy – mostly old people will die.

- If the New Year time is cold – then Easter will be warm.

- If during New Year there are a lot of birds in your homestead – then all year around there will be many guests and the year will be fun.

Games and magic
Most of Christmas eve games were played also on New Year’s eve, but some are special also for this celebration...

-On the New Year’s Night girls write 12 male names on 13 little sheets of paper (one is left empty). She fold them and put them under her pillow. In the morning she should draw one without looking – the name she draws will show the name of her future husband (if it's the empty one she will stay single). If a girl wakes up at night and make her draw then, she must put the paper piece onto the bedside table and read it in the morning. Guys can do the same only writing female names.

-Young people sit around the table, puts key, ring, little glass of water or some money on the plates and cover them. Then mix the plates. One by one the players choose plates. The one that gets a ring will get married, water means one will get an alcoholic husband/wife, a key means one will move to a new home, and, of course, money means one will be rich.

Nowadays the New Year’s Eve celebration is very similar to everywhere else. Some celebrates at home, some in clubs, some rents houses somewhere out of town. People are still trying not to fell asleep until the midnight and still have great time.

Lithuanians do not make much out of New Year promises or intentions, or they do them quietly to themselves.

At midnight we gather together outside (on bridges, squares or in little town centres) to watch fireworks and wish each other HAPPY NEW YEAR!.

Happy new year to you all! Be creative, positive and happy, let all your dreams come true and stay true to who you are.


Laimingų Naujųjų Metų!
From Saulene.


More information about Lithuanian New Year traditions at:
http://neris.mii.lt/EN/HOLIDAYS/new_years.php

Category : Lithuania today



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