Despite having only about ninety minutes of sleep so far in 2011, I admit that I had an excellent Silvester - as Germans call New Years Eve. Although I was sad to forego Dick Clark (or is it Ryan Seacrest?) and the annual Twilight Zone Marathon, I was happy to discover some new December 31 traditions with my girlfriend Maggie and a few of our friends from college. Here are highlights from the last night's Vienna program (official and unofficial):
-Pouring molten lead into cold water to predict your 2011 fortune. My glob formed itself roughly into the shape of a shoe. Its meaning is open to interpretation.
|New Years is a busy day for the purchase|
of useless plastic trinkets
-Buying lucky Austrian New Years totems: pigs, mushrooms, chimney sweeps, and clovers (seem Irish...)
-Attempting to waltz to Strauss at midnight, failing due to lack of space and ability to waltz.
And the first vocabulary lesson of the New Year is einen guten Rutsch - a nice German New Years greeting that literally translates to wishing someone a "good slide." I do not know the etymology of this phrase, but I suspect that it might relate to a champagne-related decrease in ability to walk (or waltz) properly.