Get to know your Spanish traditions so you don’t make a fool of yourself like I did.

It was back on New Year’s Eve, 2000, in Mexico City. Just minutes before midnight, Maye handed me some grapes.

“Gracias,” I said.

I felt like having something cleansing to eat after all that rich food, and I started to eat the grapes.

Maye laughed at me and told everyone else esta comiendo las uvas (he is eating the grapes).

I was oblivious to this Spanish tradition, which has been adopted in Latin America as well as communities in the United States and the Philippines.

Here’s what to do when you get handed grapes on New Year’s Eve.

Firstly, don’t eat them before the clock strikes midnight.

Then, on midnight, eat the first of las doce uvas de suerte (the 12 grapes of luck).

Then you eat a grape and make a wish for the coming year.

BOOOOONGGGG… eat a grape, I wish to get in good shape

Then do the same for each of the 12 grapes and 12 strikes of the clock.

BOOOOOONGGG… eat a grape, I wish for travel.

BOOOOOONGGG… eat a grape, I wish to spend more time with my children.


Me gusta la tradición (I like the tradition) and I don’t eat the grapes before the clock strikes medianoche (midnight) anymore.

If one of your wishes is to speak Spanish in 2015, you can make it happen with this special offer: