The arrival of the month of December always brings the vibe that a global religious and joyful festival Christmas is drawing near. As the herald of the last month of a year always gives a thought that the bygone weeks have flown like a river without stopping its current for even a moment, the gloomy affairs of the past are thereby dispelled away when the world outside our homes lights up like never before with multitudes of lights and the sounds in our surroundings are filled with carols in order to signify the birth of the Son of God Jesus Christ in the world. To begin a new year afresh with notes of positivity, the season of Christmas is celebrated merrily by people of all religions. Apart from feasting on the traditional, delicious and new varieties of chocolates and cakes that flies off from the shelves rather quickly across different stores which leaves no stone unturned to accumulate huge profits in the last month of the year by devising various marketing strategies, the people also go church hopping in the evenings to pray and enjoy the various kinds of decorations that come alive in the religious place of the Christians. Besides getting enthralled by a colourful and lively ambience outside homes, people also usher in the spirit of brightening the frosty winter month in their living spaces by buying a Christmas tree which they bedeck with varieties of ornate items like stars, mistletoe, toys, trinkets. However, the persons who do not buy Christmas trees find other ways to soak in the Yuletide spirit like making their homes vibrate loudly with some hit X-mas songs either in the music systems or mobile applications.
Some of the innocent childhood joys that are experienced by all the little human beings in the last week of the twelfth month of a year-
Secretly wishing to meet Santa Claus in real life
When the countdown for Christmas arrives, every child like to fantasize about Santa Claus bringing loads of gifts for them to their homes. The television shows and books which have widely depicted Father Christmas i.e. Santa Claus as a large white-bearded bespectacled man wearing a red coat with white fur collar and cuffs, white-fur-cuffed red trousers, red hat with white fur, and black leather belt and boots and always carrying a bag full of goodies, have made children imagine him as a jolly and unconditionally kind figure. Moreover, when children listens or watches the stories of Santa Claus arriving in only “good kids’ ” homes at night through heavy snowfall on a sleigh pull by reindeer and putting gifts below their beds depending on their behaviour have made them believe him as a godfather. Although the many tales of Santa Claus like he accomplishing his mission of delivering gifts to children by manufacturing them with the aid of Christmas elves in his toy workshop at North Pole can be a source of delight for them to hear, it also manages to bring cheerful vibes to even the adults. The spirit of joy of giving is marked enthusiastically in Christmas with many institutions and people reaching out to orphanages or the poor with a motive of doing charity generously by making large donations of various items in addition to money. The children who are studying in Christian missionary schools get to enjoy pre-Christmas festivities by obtaining opportunities to decorate the educational institutions with things significant for the herald of the birth of Lord Jesus. They also get to enjoy participating in carol singing sessions. However, the biggest excitement comes when a staff comes in the dress of Santa Claus with a large bag of sweets and then start throwing or handing out these to the children as a gesture of symbolizing the prime importance of the figure during the festival of Christmas. Besides schools, many shops or malls today hire persons to dress up as Santa Claus with a motive to lure customers especially tiny ones. It is a common sight to see children busily hanging around with excited faces to shake hands with Santa Claus dressed up figures or posing for photoshoots with them in busy shopping complexes.
Getting to indulge with special varieties of some guilty pleasures
With the hope of accumulating huge profits during the Christmas season, bakeries churn out special cakes and chocolates so that they can attract new customers besides wooing up the already loyal ones. Moreover, the owners of the bakeries also deck up their business establishments with beautifully decorated Christmas trees, strings of colourful lights and large sized stars to impress customers and pull them mentally towards it so that they can have a look at the variety of delicious and sinfully sweet fares, buy some and then go off to their destinations. Besides bakeries, restaurants also leave no stone unturned to don their thinking caps and reinvent their menu with some new delectables of sweet taste. The main pullers of lavish Christmassy decorations in the entrance of shopping establishments includes children. When the sight of shiny objects, that forms the central aspect of X-mas decorations, enthrall the senses and visuals of kids outside bakeries or restaurants below ten years, most of them will pester their parents to take them inside it and the former would do so to satiate the massive curiosity levels of their offsprings and make them happy by buying something that they wishes for. Therefore, it has become a ritual to enjoy special sweet treats in the X-mas season without which the flavour of merriness remains incomplete literally.
Enjoy the lively and starry celebrations outside homes on Christmas nights
During the lively and jolly occasion of a Christmas evening, no mortal has the inclination to stay cooped up inside homes unless there is some personal work or some kind of restrictions. Church hopping on the late evenings of 25th December every year is a ritual that is religiously followed by people irrespective of their set of beliefs. While the outside premises of the churches come alive with lots of colourful shiny lights and little Christmas trees bedecked with variety of ornaments in every corner, the most prominent and attractive part of the decorations include a biggest star and the Christmas Crib. The Christmas Crib which shows the way Lord Jesus was born is also referred to as Nativity Scene. The cribs, which are generally made with sticks and straw and then decorated with strings of lights, exhibit figures representing the infant Jesus, his mother, Mary, and her husband, Joseph. The other characters of the crib include shepherds, sheep and angels. As described in the ‘Gospel of Luke’, all these characters are displayed near the manger in a barn (or cave) which is projected to accommodate farm animals. A donkey and an ox are also a part of this scene and Magi and their camels are also included. These characters are described in the ‘Gospel of Matthew’. Meanwhile, the inner premises of the church also enthrall people with the various decorations that come up there. Besides the fragrant aroma and the flame of numerous candles brightening up the moods of the masses, there is the altar of Jesus which is beautified with lots of flowers and lights. Apart from the altar of Jesus, every nook inside a church comes alive with floral glory and a vibe of positivity in Christmas. Moreover, church hopping of people continues from the 25th December till 1st January annually, so the X-mas decorations of churches still remains intact till the New Year sets in. As no kind of community festival in India gets completed without some gossip over non-home cooked food so the ritual of gorging on some munchies outside the places of residences is followed mandatorily almost by all church hoppers during X-mas.
Participating in fun indoor activities
Most children like to participate in decorating the Christmas tree in their houses with their creative enthusiasm. From selecting and buying Christmas ornaments to put up in the tree and sketching out figures of toys and cutting them out to shouting and struggling for ensuring that the decorations are done right, the Christmas tree was the prime feature of attraction for children. Besides getting mesmerized with the tales of Santa Claus, children would also get captivated with the soulful carols with its soothing music and beautiful lyrics when hearing them.
May the most wonderful time of the year give you peace and happiness. Merry Christmas!