New year’s celebrations are just around the corner and were preceded by 6 days by Christmas. As a boy I remember asking my grandfather about this odd coincidence. To my childhood mind there seemed something odd about the two events being so closely tied into each other. So as age took its toll and I discovered the marvel of information on the internet, I did some research.
Did you know that Mesopotamia (Iraq) started with the concept of celebrating the New Year? They did this about 2 thousand years before the birth of Jesus. 2000 BC. Then it seems as if the Romans dedicated New Year's Day to Janus, the pagan god of gates, doors, and beginnings, for whom the first month of the year, January, is named. You can add to that when they arrived at the coastline, they found a small inlet river on the South American coast line and they named it River of January or Rio Janiero. And so on and so on.
OK OK OK BOARD MONITOR – I HEAR YOU THINKING. “SO TELL US CHARLES, WHAT HAS THIS GOT TO DO WITH ARUBA”
I’ll tell ya:
It seems to me that about 4,015 years ago, they started the planning dates for week numbers and those same numbers play an important part in a trillion dollar business called timeshare. In other words, timeshare just aint a new thing. They had the concept tied down and have just been refining it. Want something new? Try FLOATING time or consider the “High Season” dates.” Heck man, the Mesopotamians were setting up the ground work to the tourism industry a long time ago.
On Aruba, and other parts of the world, the New Year is celebrated with firecrackers. Now here is a goody: Originally, (200BC) the firecracker was called baozhu which means means "exploding bamboo. Originally it was intended to scare off evil spirits. It works! Check the places where they explode fireworks and you will notice that there are no…. you guessed it … Evil spirits.
Not to be left out of the picture on all of this madness, in New York City, hundreds of thousands of people watch as they lower a ball down a pole. The event is probably loaded with evil spirits. Doesn’t anyone learn??? Anyway, the marketing money made as the ball comes down makes up for all those evil spirits lurking around. I think - Perhaps not - Who knows?
What else have we done that will be remembered in 2000 years? Hmm, I need some time to answer that. Seems to me like we have all been pretty busy being angry at each other and blowing things up and that kind of thing. So, want to make a New Years resolution? Do you?
Promise to love each other.
I wish you all a lovely tan, great casino nights, walks on white sand and genuine love for each other.