After the Christmas festivities, New Year’s Eve and the Magi, life in Spain has returned to normal.
Each year, after all the festivities have ended, there is always one curious thing that stays on my mind and this year I would like to share it with you.
In fact it is one of the most popular traditions in Spain and supposedly also in many other Latin American countries, but from an outsider’s point of view it could be seen as somewhat strange. I’m talking about the tradition for both men and women to wear red underwear on New Year’s Eve, in hope that it will bring them good luck and love.
It is not really clear where this tradition comes from, however it certainly dates back to the Middle Ages. In those ancient times the color red was associated with the demon, witchcraft and of course, with blood. It was definitely not socially acceptable. Avoiding the color red went even so far as to ban the consumption of red food (tomatoes and peppers, for example). Wearing something red was utterly impossible if was visible at first sight. So people in this century who wanted to bring a bit of color into their lives wore something red that could be hidden, and where else better to hide something than under your very clothes, as underwear?
Today it is impossible to think of banning red vegetables and fruits, or the color itself. In today’s world red has a completely different image. It is the color of love and passion.
Of course, wearing red underwear on New Year’s Eve holds a touch of superstition. And why not, if it helps people find love. Although to work properly, the underwear should be received as a gift, and not bought at the store. The free spirit that dominates life today is of course not only limited to the color red. Nowadays people also choose to wear yellow or green underwear.
Yellow is supposed to bring good luck with money and green, good health.
At Lenguaventura we hope that all of you have chosen the right color for yourselves to welcome the new year. We wish you a happy 2017 and hope to spend a few weeks together with some of you at the Tarifa summer camp in July. See you soon!