When the New Year knocks at the door, every country celebrates it in its own way, following its own culture and traditions.
They may vary from place to place but the spirit of welcoming the New Year with a bang remains the same. Just like all other countries, the Dominican Republic also follows its own traditions to celebrate the special day of New Year or Ano Nuevo.
Usually, New year celebrations are done at home with family members and close friends. The most important part of the occasion is cleaning the homes before the New Year rolls in. Traditionally, it is believed that New Year brings a new life and hence it should be welcomed in a proper manner by discarding everything that is old. Cleaning every part of their house signifies arrival of good luck for them and they wash away anything that’s old and no more needed.
Every corner of the home is cleaned and every inch of dirt is dusted away before the New Year day. No one touches the broom on the New Year day as sweeping anything on that special day might sweep your luck away. Some Dominicans also go to the extent of repainting their houses in order to make it look perfect and welcome lucky spirits. Most of the Dominicans burn incense sticks to give the home a divine look.
Just at 12 Midnight, on the New Year day, they Dominicans keep their doors and windows open as they believe that the evil spirits will run away giving space to good spirits. They discard the old brooms and purchase new brooms outside the doors which are brought inside the next day for the similar reason. Interestingly, Dominicans hang 12 grapes, each symbolizing a month, to make wishes for the entire year and each every month for the wish come true . Staunch Catholics also call priests to bless their homes with the Holy Water.
Colors are given lots of importance during the New Year celebrations. They believe the color of your dress signifies the wish you make for the Year. For example, if you are in Green, you wish to improve your financial condition. If you are in Yellow, your goal is to work far better. In red, you might be seeking a better future and a white dress for you would mean you are in search for a good health above all.
The New Year day is usually celebrated at home with a massive dinner accompanied by dance and music. The entire family comes together during the period and everyone brings gifts wrapped with good wishes for each other. All members of the family sit together and share their old memories or discuss what went wrong in the previous year. They also talk about their New Year resolutions and how they are going to follow them strictly. A new year day celebrated with loved ones not only make the day special but also gives the much needed spirit to live life in a better way all the year round. Isn’t it so?