Earlier in December I read a piece on “Weird Austrian New Year’s Traditions.” Initially I just skimmed over the story, thinking that New Year’s could not be any more strange than the normally reserved Viennese becoming raging pyromaniacs on December 31. Turns out that in addition to the hundreds of Euros spent on pyrotechnics and alcohol to ring in the new year (the remains of which litter the vineyard for days), Austrians also buy lead or tin tokens to melt down, from which their New Year’s fortunes are “read” vis-a-vis the cooled shapes. This Classical Greek custom found its way to Austria, Germany, and the Nordic countries way back in history. (Bleigießen translates to, “pouring lead.”)
On New Year’s Eve, friends and family gather to melt lead and foretell the upcoming year. As non-Nordics or Germans or Austrians, we decided statutory limitations did not apply to us anyway, and so melted our lead pieces this afternoon. There are several websites devoted to explaining the shape created from the melted lead poured into the water, and we were pleased to note that their predictions were at least consistent.
I went first. My molten lead splattered into the water and resembled grains. Apparently in 2015 my wishes will be fulfilled!
Anna Grace followed, but somehow spilled her lead. We accepted her attempt regardless, deemed an egg. The new year holds the promise of a larger family, which she immediately interpreted as, “A Vizsla puppy friend for Clayton Theodore!”
Jack followed, his melted lead resulting in a dragon. “Keep Calm” will rule his year.
Finally, Tony. His “lizard” form predicts that a “big annoyance will disappear quickly” in 2015.
We had one final piece of lead, which we melted on behalf of Clayton Theodore. His “antler” predicts that he will have “misfortune in love” this year. Poor Clayton Theodore. Perhaps a Vizsla will soothe his broken heart?