Musings of the Holiday Season
Passing by a little bakery around the bend of 'Little India' street in Singapore ,a warm aroma of freshly baked plum cake fills my senses.I close my eyes and it takes me back to the cake mixing days in my childhood ... rums and raisins ,fill my memories.
Drifting back to Calcutta in the 90's ,my mind wanders off to places far off ,just like a happy collage stuck in the inner crevices of my mind.
Park Street was it? All lighted up and festive like a newly wed bride ,glimmering and shimmering under a beautiful holiday spell.
Streets bedecked with Christmassy booths ,playing that familiar "Holly Jolly "music that you get to see in all those heartwarming movies.
There was a pleasant nip in the air as I walked down the busy streets looking starry eyed at all the Christmas ornaments that hung from the green and red bunting and the magical fairy lights.
They would be selling Santa caps and hats at every corner, calling out to every passerby.
Nestling my little cup of hot cocoa ,I would merrily walk into 'Music World' and plug in a headphone and 'Jim Reeves' would fill my soul with a warm and fuzzy feeling .
Mom and Dad would be waiting at the counter with the latest CD mix of all the latest Christmas play list.
That was the sheer joy of being present in the moment...no mobile phones to keep us glued ,but just some warmth and love to get us through the spirit of Christmas .My sister and myself would be carting along a huge gift bag with loads of goodies for little kids at Allen Park. Oh! that was the joy of giving and it made us feel elated and blessed.
Christmas is all about giving and making others feel happy ..isn't it?
Glancing at Flury's ,we would see a throng get in with their warm coats and red beanies ,
an occasional tune of Mariah Carrey's "All I want for Christmas" playing inside as the doors opened to let them in.
Later that night ,we would be making a trip to the" Bow Barracks " to continue the dancing spirit with all the Anglo Indian aunties and uncles.They surely know how to enjoy life to the fullest, I must say!
Some wine and some dining to go with it ,popping those aromatic cakes at regular intervals.
I cannot stress enough about that midnight Christmas service at the St Paul's Cathedral ...you would surely get the goosebumps with the melodius carol singing that starts from 11 pm on Christmas eve.
There is something about the Christmas season at Calcutta that makes your heart feel full of love and longing ,wanting you to take a plane and head back home.
You can be at any corner of the world but the beauty of Calcutta's festive spirit calls you back ,making you think of all the good times you've had.
That is the specialty of Christmas back home.
So if you ever get a chance to visit, come to the City of Joy during the last week of December and I bet you will make some really beautiful memories ,that will remind you of home away from home.
Happy holidays homie!!
Written by Chynelle Priyanka Stephen