Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy New Year and all that

I come from a country where the passing from one year to another is acknowledged with no more than a cheery, throwaway "Happy New Year" on seeing friends and family. It came as something of a shock to discover that in France people feel their new year's wishes are only sincere if they grip me by the shoulders or clench my hand in theirs, stare deep into my panicky eyes and launch into a long and detailed list of the innumerbale positive things — financial, medical, personal, professional, psychological, mechanical etc. etc. — that they wish for me in the coming year. It's all deeply embarrassing, especially my feeble two-word reciprocation: bonne année.
Anyway, consider yourselves gripped by the shoulders. Have a very happy 2008.

11 comments:

Neil said...

With the very minimum of inappropriate touching... Happy New Year Lesley!

Pascale Clerk said...

Happy new year indeed ! I wish you a lot of French-Scottish anecdotes.

beaverboosh said...

v v funny!

Deborah said...

What about Hogmanay? That is a lot of hoopla for the new year.

According to my Scottish lot the first person to cross your threshold on New Year's day must be a Chimney sweep ... well are there any around? Much more complicated than listening to wishes of good health etc

Lesley said...

Deborah, yes, a lot of hooplah for Hogmanay but we still only say Happy New Year none of this tous mes voeux de bonheur et bla bla bla.. et surtout la santé stuff!

Deborah said...

Well, alright, it is very exhausting all this surtout la Santé palava, we will need the whole year to recover!

Good Health to everyone by the way ...

Jonathan said...

mwah mwah!

Rosie said...

Happy New Year. I've not had my shoulders gripped yet, but quite a few anonymous New Year textos on my new mobile, cos I've been too lazy to type the names and numbers into my menu...

ronnie said...

Hi Lesley,
As we say "a guid ne'er to you and yours"
Or, "Lang may yer lum reek, yer bum squeak and yer spicket dribble"
New year has strange customs indeed. Old Ted who works with me is around 75 and refuses to go to his local over New Year saying " all they women slever over ye and they widnae gie ye the time o' day fir the rest o' the year"
Maybe getting a wee bit synical in his old age?

Lucy said...

I try to arrive late at events involving largish numbers of people early in the year, so as to miss out on the communal snogging.
At least they've given up wishing me a baby by the end of the year...

Teuchter said...

And a Happy New Year from me an' a'

We'd a very quiet Hogmanay in Englandshire. Opened the champers at 9.30pm so we could take our time and enjoy it - and then went to bed shortly after midnight.