We had a small celebration here at the house. It was rather low key, which was very nice, until midnight. We ran into a couple we met last year in Los Organos early in the day New Year’s eve. Gary is English and lives in London, and his girlfriend is Peruvian. They joined us for the evening (and actually stayed for two more nights!) Walter, the vet in Los Organos came out as did Juan Pablo, one of the local doctors and his staff. We had about 10 for dinner and the evening.
At midnight, we went down to the neighbor’s hotel where they were planning fireworks. They built a huge bonfire on the beach and roasted marshmellows. The drink was still flowing, and the music was still blaring so we also stopped to dance and party a bit more. Doug and I finally left at about 3:00 in the morning with Gary and Silvia. The rest left shortly after that.
There are two traditions common in Peru in their celebrations. At the stroke of midnight, the will eat 12 grapes. Each on representing the last twelve months, all consumed and now ready to move on to a new year. The other is they make an effigy of a person; stuffed full sized and dressed. These have paper mache heads, gloves on the hands, and boots on the feet…they can be quite elaborate. Then, as the new arrives, they will burn the effigy. Again, this represents the elimination of the old and starting fresh.