“Every man should be born again on the first day of January. Start with a fresh page.  Take up one hole more in the buckle if necessary, or let down one, according to circumstances; but on the first of January let every man gird himself once more, with his face to the front, and take no interest in the things that were and are past.” Henry Ward Beecher

In Italy tradition dictates that you eat pork and lentils on new year’s eve (Festa di San Silverstro). The pork symbolizes the richness of life and the lentils symbolize money or good fortune. The lentils are usually served after dinner, in fact after dessert and should be eaten with your hands if possible. The more you eat the more luck and prosperity you will have. If you can’t get your hands on cooked lentils, you can also fill your purse/wallet with uncooked ones.

Wearing red underwear and throwing old belongings out the window at midnight (out with the old, in with the new, year) is also considered to bring luck.

Happy New Year to all South Africans celebrating in all four corners of the globe! May 2010 be all that you wish for.

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Born and raised in South Africa, Manuela worked in public relations & marketing before moving into the publishing industry where she made her career. At the infamous Radium Beer Hall in Orange Grove, she met, and later married, an Italo-Natalian electronic engineer. They moved to the Netherlands and produced two perfect little people Katia & Max before moving to the scenic region of Friuli in the north-eastern corner of Italy, the place of origin of their respective parents. She does freelance work to keep the grey matter active and is currently working on her approach to the upcoming half-century milestone whilst raising her two pre-pubescent children, her biggest challenge to date.