My wife and I enjoyed a New Year’s celebration, taking in good food, music, and dance, all followed by breakfast after midnight. We were able to get our cabbage and black-eyed peas within the first half hour of the New Year. We’re looking forward to a great 2019! People around the world started their new year with traditions of their cultures, and it occurred to me how many of the traditions I am familiar with came from those brought to the United States by my relatives from Poland and Scotland. When I researched Czech and Slovak practices, I felt like I was researching my own family in many ways. Traditions like these build familiarity and form connections.
Traditions go beyond pork, lentils, fish, cabbage, and a champagne or wine toast. Often times I will tell friends about customs I’ve learned have come from Czech or Slovak culture, and they reply, “So that is where that came from!” That is why the NCSML team brings so many classes, programs, activities, and exhibitions that reveal, engage, and inform others about culture and customs.