The Villagers Who Celebrate New Year’s at Noon

The Spanish village of Villar de Corneja celebrated the beginning of the new year at 12 noon on New Year’s Eve. According to the Spanish New Year’s Eve tradition, everyone eats exactly 12 grapes shortly before the turn of the year while 12 bells of the town hall tower ring. The 70 residents of the village come out to celebrate, but 37 of those residents do it at noon, rather than midnight. That’s because their average age is 80 and they want to get to bed at a decent hour. Among other things, it’s too cold at midnight for the elderly to gather in front of the city hall clock. So, at noon, they show up to celebrate and are greeted with sparkling cider. Chances are, the 37 residents are the only ones who get to enjoy the sun rising on the first day of the new year.