New Years' in March?

 
Piazza dei Miracoli, Pisa
Piazza dei Miracoli, Pisa
I couldn't believe it when my friend told me that she was going to Pisa for New Years' - now. "Uh, it's too early... or too late" - I thought. "We're still at the beginning of March!," I replied. She started laughing at me and then she told me this crazy story. The thing is that in Pisa they celebrate the New Year twice! The first time is the "normal" one on January 1st, the second time is on March 25th. She told me that from 1200 to 1749 the celebration of the New Year for Pisa citizens was the Annunciation Day, nine months before Christmas. Nowadays, this old tradition is alive again. The curious part is that the celebration happens at noon instead of midnight as a "normal" New Year. It starts with a parade of the "Corteo Storico della Repubblica Marinara e dei Gonfaloni dei Comuni Pisani". After that there's a celebration of a religious ceremony and at noon a sun beam enters the Cathedral's window and arrives at a marble egg. It happens every year, for hundreds of years. Well, I'd love to see that in person! See you there on March 25th! Happy New Year! [geo_mashup_map]