New Year’s Eve on a Brazilian Beach

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Jacob Coy: Graphic Arts

A few years ago I spent New Year’s Eve in Brazil with family. New Year’s Eve marks the beginning of summer, and is considered the most important day of the year in Brazilian culture.

As it is very warm, everyone heads to the beaches where they have big parties with lots of loud music and food. It is tradition to wear white on New Year’s Eve, as it is supposed to bring good luck and symbolise peace.

After the fireworks which happen at midnight, there is a tradition to jump over seven waves, so everyone heads into the sea. This is also thought to bring good luck, and once you have jumped over seven waves you have to eat seven pomegranate seeds. People also throw flowers into the sea and light candles on the sand, as an offering to Iemanja, the Goddess of the sea in the Candonble religion, which was founded by Afro-Brazilian slaves. It was an experience unlike any other.

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