Party in Vienna! We didn’t really believe that at first because Austrians are about as stereotypically fun-loving as Germans, but New Year’s Eve in Vienna really is a huge party! People say it might be the only day of the year that Austrians let loose and make noise. The Christmas Markets have become New Year Party Markets, the same idea but with more music and a slightly different menu.
Note the pig sitting up on the roof. Austrian culture believes in good luck charms, many of them familiar like gold coins and four-leaf clovers.
They also have a thing for mushrooms and pigs. The lucky pig!
I got these pigs for the boys. Because everyone needs a pig.
The New Year’s markets were selling Pig Hats and champagne, and as the sun went down we saw more and more people walking around with pigs on their heads.
The music was also starting up on stages all over the city.
“New Year” in German is “Silvester.”
For those who prefer drinking champagne and dancing to something a little more classical, the Graben becomes a huge ballroom dance floor.
We stayed out dancing as long as we could, but it was freezing!! Even a few glasses of Punsch and some fried bread weren’t enough to make staying outside until midnight sound fun.
The fried bread comes in all kinds of shapes. Our favorite is the garlic-butter-cheese kind, called Käselangos.
Austrians also have this funny tradition of melting little pieces of metal over a candle, then throwing the hot metal into a bowl of water. The shape of the metal is supposed to predict your fortune for the next year. It seems like Austrians light a lot of small fires inside their homes for various occasions, but I guess if they are all having fun and the fire department doesn’t mind, it’s a pretty cool tradition.
Nobody really made it to midnight this year except me. Mike downloaded the Peach Bowl and I sort of blame the Huskies for everyone falling asleep. At least I had my puzzle to keep me going as the game got worse.
I’ve never been sold much on the significance of New Year’s, but it is a moment, I guess like any other moment. Its significance is that it happens. And the significance of moments is that, strung together, they make the story of a life. So here’s to another year of moments with the people we love most.
Happy New Year!!!!