This year we had a quiet Christmas. I didn't bake a cake, and the day didn't begin with appam and stew. Nevertheless, the family got together at night, with everyone bringing something to the table; duck, fish, chicken, salad, bread rolls, flavored rice, and dal followed by a lemon and coconut pudding and a coffee pudding. Before this feast, we sat together, sang a few carols, watched Adiv dance to Jingle Bells, had a Bible reading, and prayed. The kids were all given presents. Adiv was most thrilled.
Adiv's Christmas began the day the stars came up in the building. He was fascinated by them. The excitement doubled, when his grand uncle showed him the picture of a Santa Claus. From then on, he only watched videos of Tantaku (Santa) and spoke about him. He thought Jingle Bells was the "coolest" song ever, and always jumped up to shake to its beat. Then on Christmas eve, we had to get the kids presents, and we landed up in a mall. As soon as we got there, we saw huge crowds gather at the atrium. That middle of the mall had been transformed into the north pole, and on a sleigh sat Santa. He smiled, posed for pictures with the kids, and gave them sweets.
"Tantakooooo, come", yelled a very excited Adiv. We immediately got him a ticket and waited his turn. When his turn came, he smilled happily and settled down on Santa's lap. When Santa brought out his sac of sweets, he put both hands in and took as many as he could. Then I took a few pictures, ignoring the Forum photographer who suggested that I pose with Santa as well. After the pictures, we picked out goodie bag from Nilgiris, and got to Landmark. We snaked our way in to find books and toys, before we suddenly spotted a dancing Santa. He danced towards kids in the store, posing for pictures and giving out presents. A few excited parents threw their frightened children towards this famished, tamil speaking Santa, just so they could get a picture. Santa obliged by smiling and holding on to the writhing child. Then Adiv ran forward, pushed away a frightened child and danced to the tunes of Jingle bells. Both Santa and Adiv danced, and Adiv got his present. Saying bye, we moved to another section in the store. Finally when the bill was being paid, we saw Santa again. Adiv ran to him blowing kisses. Santa smiled, obliged with another jig, and gave him ANOTHER present. The day had gone well. It was perfected by a pair of shades from Liliput that Adiv begged for (and got). He now zooms across rooms on his cycle, wearing these shades.
New Year, was more tiring. We were in Cochin for an engagement, and quite anxious about trying out the Cochin specials. Unfortunately, Ro ended up with a tummy upset, but that didn't deter little Adiv. He danced to the tunes of some popular mallu songs and the Vengaboys (remember, "I'm going to Ibiza?") and welcomed in the New year. Otherwise we pretty much spent our time with visits to family members in the city.
Now that the excitement has this holiday season as ended, Adiv is now preparing for the next big event; his 2nd birthday. So he spends a lot of time strumming his version of the Happy Birthday song on Ro's guitar, singing, "Happy to you...Adi"! Life sure is exciting when you are two!:)