Before rolling your eye balls down let me take the opportunity to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year in advance.
You probably have read my earlier take on Diwali…
This is quite the same.. On Christmas!
SO! LETS ROLL!
Bengal has an extremely strange relationship with the British past. It’s something that has gotten ingrained in our society due to its long impact.
Christmas is one of those times when the “Britisssar” in a bong comes to the fore. The subtle images of sitting by the fireplace slurping your tea and feasting on your cake takes a heavy toll of the minds of the people.
Nowhere in India is Christmas celebrated with so much joy and gusto as it’s done in Kolkata, it’s the living and breathing proof that secularism in India is still possible.
Every corner of the roads are lit up with “tuni” bulbs winking at each other, there is really no need to transform Kolkata into London as it almost feels like it!
The very city was created by them! The edifices of the aging monuments sans the maintenance provide quite a London like feel.
The festival in Kolkata not purely Christian as the tradition of having cakes in the “bada din” is of long ago. The inventories of the shops are nearly sold out by the day of Christmas. Some people during this time behave as if their breakfast is flown away straight from 10th Downing Street! “I buy cakes from FLURYs only…. that taste and texture…. can’t be matched!!!” I mean seriously? These are the same people who shriek at the very thought of ordering a desert whilst at a restaurant.
Truth be spoken, I feel pity for the shopkeepers who got to remember the complex “Dundee’s” and “Black forests”. Throughout the year they sell “amar cake and tomar cake” and the sudden invasion of a “Swissyum fruit delight” causes much discomfort.
The St.Paul’s Cathedral at the stroke of Christmas is jam-packed for the midnight mass which is broadcasted live on doordarshan bangla. Now, that’s one of the very few days when this channel gets some TRP. I mean really.. Who says…. “Damn! I missed the last episode of Mungerilal ke haseen sapne!”
The Riverside campus at Belur is magnificently decorated during this time! The bushes are trimmed to be shaped as giant Christmas trees while little chrysanthemums act as stars. A quite interesting fact is that the prayer hall of the Ramakrishna Mission remains packed as much as the St.Paul’s Cathedral.
People from the high society indulge in various social gatherings. Homes of people are decorated with Christmas trees often by people who have absolutely no clue what the hell is going on! So, why are they doing it? The answer is pretty simple..because the so called “phor-e-ners “do it! And people so badly want to be like them. Luncheon meetings are organised by the Tollygunge club. The setting here screams P.G Wodehouse. The men and women with their dresses outrageous enough to make the people attending the Wimbledon blush don these events! They are the “BABU’s” of Bankimchandra in all aspects.
Thats pretty much what i had in mind. Its so boring that you might even fall asleep and find its New Year already on waking up!
I WISH YOU A MERRY CHRISTMAS
I WISH YOU A MERRY CHRISTMAS
AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!