December 24, 2016

Christmas, gifts and Secret Santa

Posted by maithili at 1:40 PM
                   The last week of December is my favorite time of the year. It has been the same even before I came into the corporate world and this week became synonymous with low volumes of work due to holiday season, although it has become one more reason to be happy and glee.

                   I never went to a convent school, I never really had any close Christian friend and I most certainly did not belong to a westernized family. What's a westernized family you may ask? I believe them to be people largely influenced by Western movies and culture (yes the ones who celebrate Halloween and tomato fests). The point I am making here is that I never had people who understand or share my excitement about this season!

                  The earliest Christmas memories I have are those of standing in a queue outside the Monginis cake shop to meet a Santa Claus with my father. When I was a kid, we were never over exposed to Santa Claus. There were no malls with Christmas decoration or a man dressed as Santa Claus all month in a corner of the mall. On the 25th of December, Monginis did have a Santa Claus who stood with a huge bag of gifts, and kids stood in line just to shake hands with the Santa and get a pack of gifts. The gifts inside the pack were small things like a scented eraser, a pencil, a color pencil set, a balloon, a Santa Claus mask and a flying fan (the one that you roll between your palms and set free) but the happiness of getting these things from Santa himself was beyond measure. I am partial to Monginis cake shop for this very happy time they gifted me years back!

                                                Image result for santa claus mask
                                                         image courtesy-youtube

                 In the years that followed, I stopped going to Monginis. The gift pack did not excite me anymore. So Santa decided to visit me. Yes, every 25th morning I had a gift hidden somewhere in the house. It almost always was close to the door. A sling bag hanging from the door handle with the lipstick color I loved or a dress that was neatly packed and placed in my cycle basket. I was old enough to know that there was no Santa for real (such heartbreaking truths we come to know!), my mother convinced me that she booked a Santa visit at a gift shop. Every Christmas morning they come over and sing carols and leave behind a gift. I believed it, I truly believed it. I had no way to prove otherwise because I couldn't for the life of me wake up in the wee hours of morning to verify it for myself! And so it continued, until one day Santa forgot to visit. I was disappointed. Later that evening, I found a box of pastries. I knew my Santa was not keeping well and had made up this last moment arrangement. It had been my mom all along.

                 Before I shifted to Bangalore, all my Christmas mornings were full of excitement about the gift and evenings spent savoring a wine plum cake or chocolate pastry. Of course I did a spiritual dance each time I walked by the streets full of stars and lights. When I moved to Bangalore, my first Christmas week looked gloomy. I had no friends, no family, no job. Just a husband. On my first Christmas here, we went to a mall and it instantly brightened me up.  Entire mall decorated in Christmas colors, a Christmas tree and a Santa Claus. This was exactly what I needed to feel happy. While the place I stayed seemed to not know what Christmas was, this mall away from home felt like a heaven of my memories.

               The next two Christmas weeks in Bangalore have been nothing but a delight. The work place feels like the happiest place on earth with the reception having a Christmas tree and the decorations, and the work desks having colorful balloons. Secret Santa in office just reveals the child within each of us. How happy we are to find a bar of chocolate on the desk! Finding hidden gifts in a colleague's locker or tucked behind the monitors, going on breaks and coming back expecting your Santa must have kept something on your table, the joy of unwrapping your gift and your colleagues gathering around you to see what you got. I absolutely love this week at work. Since we work for off shore clients, work is usually slow in this week too! All the more reason to be happy. This year I had a Secret Santa who who had a thing for pretty packaging. Each time I saw my gift I lost my heart to the box.

               
 Its not just the gifts that make me so cheerful. Somehow I feel energetic around this time of the year. Even if I have wasted the entire year doing nothing, this week makes me feel like its the best of what the year has offered to me. I haven't gone hungry all year, I have had a roof over my head, I have had a warm bed to sleep each night, I have had people to take care of me when I am down, I have had enough money to buy what I needed, I have had more blessings than mishaps in my year,  I have woken up each day with anticipation than despair and that is all that one needs to be happy. I think I finally realize now that you value your parents more and more as you grow older. They have given me so many memories for a festival that was not even the one that we celebrated and it turned out to be the one that makes me happiest even now.

                 This Christmas I wish more happy memories for children across the globe, more time for adults to spend with their kids, more family bonding than networking. I wish that you have more hope, less Monday morning blues, more time to read, more time to write, more courage to express, more anecdotes to share, more places to travel, more feelings to experience, more reasons to smile, more skills to learn, more friends to make, to more beautiful pictures, more songs to sing, more avenues to explore, more warm hugs to share, more kisses to give, more Sundays to laze, more spirit to run, more energy to work, more health to live a happy life! May your year be a blessed one.

3 comments:

The Enchantress on January 6, 2017 at 12:27 AM said...

Christmas is my favorite festival too :D
Blessings

http://www.topqualitysessays.org/superiorpapers-com-review/ on March 29, 2017 at 9:06 PM said...

Beautiful post, Everyone looks for good stuff when it is christmas. Thanks for sharing it with us and keep sharing such posts

prostate cancer diagnosis on May 25, 2017 at 2:25 PM said...

I love christmas, you get to have so much pleasant gifts in it. I really like what you received in christmas, thanks for sharing it with us

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