As the rest of the world goes about 11th September as a normal day, in Ethiopia every year on this day, it is time to usher in a new year. The Ethiopian calendar shows that there are 13 months in a year contrary to the 12 that are recognized universally. So today, in Ethiopia it is the year 2006.
The celebration of the New Year in Ethiopia is mainly a family affair and is done in homes settings. Green grass is spread on the floor of the house, to signify a celebratory mood; traditional coffee is brewed the whole day and served to family members.
In the course of the day kids below the age of 10 knock on the door and offer drawings they sketch themselves.
Thereafter, there are visits by young girls of the same age, who sing at the doorsteps of people. They sing celebratory New Year songs, and in appreciation, the house owners offer some little token.
After awhile older men also visit and sing traditional songs.
Ethiopians anticipate highly the coming in of their new year because it not only signifies a change in calendar but also a change in season.
Ethiopians attribute their unique calendar and cultural way of celebrating New Year to the fact that they weren’t colonized hence do not have to follow any European time schedule or style of celebrations.
The year 2006 is coming with expectations from nationals of different ages and walks of life.
Out in the streets of Addis Ababa , as more young girls move around the streets singing new year songs , many other people like Dawit Diress a taxi driver are having a normal business day.
The New Year celebrations in Ethiopia are recognized by both Muslims and Christians and the cultural celebration of the day is synonymous.