My love for Christmas has been crafted by a mélange of memories. Having done my schooling in a Catholic School , spending a precious teenage year in a church hostel amongst grey habits and growing up with a multi-ethnic group of friends has made this day as much special for me as Diwali or Dushhera.
I can’t think of any other better time for Christmas to arrive - right at the end of the year to make you merry, no matter how the year behind had been. On this chilly winter night, the world drapes itself in beautiful red and green, dotted with the silver and shimmer.
This Christmas Eve, As I sit down to scribble some words , I couldn’t help but wonder about the 20 odd Eves that I have witnessed. Each phase has been different from the other. Each centered around a different set of people and places and around a different me. But if I had to choose the special Xmas Eves – they are the forgotten ones, tucked away in ancient times.
I must have been 8 years old . The school holidays used to start on 23rd Dec and it was ( the one and only ) day on which I never had a stomach/tooth/tongue ache or any such innovative anomaly , and I looked forward to get to the school.
Throughout our lectures , we waited for the Santa’s arrival .Especially after the recess , we grew more and more restless . Finally when we heard the Jingle bells approaching our classroom , each one got ready to run and grab the maximum number of goodies from the Santa. Now these were not expensive gifts – but just any other candies we already had an enormous stock of. But the joy of climbing up the wooden benches , screaming the jingles at top of our voices and seizing the maximum amount of those candies was a big big deal, then..
The real thrill, however started towards the evening, when I used to rush home and s and join my friends – on the terrace to make the wish-list. It was a task which involved a lot of consultation and racking of our little cerebrums.As a principle , we used to write only 3 wishes and reserve the rest for the next year . So after much calculations , I used to neatly write those essentials that I required to continue living – like say , a black pilot pen , a squeezee water bottle , complicated 15-door compass box ,sometimes evil spells for my teachers :P n pink lip sticks. The last one almost always featured on my list. These chits , were then inserted under our pillows.
My mom used to ask me over dinner, what I have jotted down and I proudly declared the list. She pretended to not listen to it very carefully, though.
I used to force myself to sleep off early on the Eve - worried what if Santa missed my home this year !But he was efficient - never missed a thing .Every Christmas morning gave me a reason to cheer . More than the fact that I have received my “pink” lipsticks – the fact that he had remembered to drop by , was my achievement.
As years passed, I realized who Santa was. My mom , who pretended not to hear my precious list used to fill the Christmas stockings with those gifts, every yr. Now that I look back , it feels such a stupid and such a wonderful gesture . Beautiful enough, that I shall remember it for the years to come.
Those were the years ,Xmas was simply beautiful and beautifully simple .Merry Christmas !