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فصل 06

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CHAPTER SIX

New Years Eve

On 31 December everyone celebrates the end of the old year and the beginning of the new.

In Scotland New Year’s Eve is called Hogmanay. It is the most important celebration of the year. In Edinburgh there is an immense street celebration on New Year’s Eve.

In America and Britain many people like going to parties or organising them in their homes. Some people prefer to celebrate in restaurants or night clubs. Young people celebrate at home or at a disco. Others go to masked balls in costumes and masks. Everyone takes off their mask at midnight.

Cheers, noise, music, dancing, colourful decorations, festive food and drink are all part of New Year’s Eve. People like throwing confetti on the last night of the year.

People wear their best party clothes on this exciting night. At parties everyone wears funny paper hats and blows toy horns. Parties usually begin after 9 pm and continue until the next morning. At midnight everyone joins hands and sings the old Scottish song ‘Auld Lang Syne.’

SHOULD auld acquaintance be forgot,

And never brought to min?

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my dear.

For auld lang syne,

We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,

For auld lang syne.

In New York City a favourite place to go on New Year’s Eve is Times Square. At midnight the words ‘Happy New Year’ appear on an electronic sign. Bells and sirens ring, people cheer and there is a lot of noise!

In London many people go to celebrate in Trafalgar Square. Everyone in Britain waits for Big Ben to strike midnight. Then there is a lot of noise. People sing ‘Auld Lang Syne’, kiss each other and cheer.

When we make a lot of noise on New Year’s Eve we are following ancient traditions. Ancient civilizations made noise to frighten evil spirits of the past year.

On New Year’s Eve the Americans and the British make New Year’s resolutions or promises. They promise to get rid of bad habits during the new year. Some typical children’s resolutions are: ‘I resolve to do my homework’ or ‘I resolve to clean my room every day’. Children write down their New Year’s resolutions, sign their name and give the paper to their parents.

Some typical adult’s resolutions are:

‘I resolve to stop smoking’ or ‘I resolve to go on a diet’. Most people don’t keep their promises, but a few do! In some American cities office workers throw their old calendars out of the office windows on 31 December. They are throwing the old year away! It is incredible to see so much paper flying about. By 5:30 p.m. the streets are covered with office calendars.

At the end of the year astrologists predict the future for all the signs of the zodiac.

Some astrologists predict catastrophic events!

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