I was a celebrant of X’mas in the 90’s, were you?

Mon, 18 Dec 2017 Source: Effah Elvis

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The bells of joy are jingling and the atmosphere is saturated with love. As the final hours are ticking away, we are gradually being ushered into the yuletide moment. What a fun it will be to stroll the streets with your sun glasses on a sunny day. Climbing the mountains of joy and descending through the valleys of time to the moments of exhilarating jollification.

Like students who have been freed after a long day’s lecture, many are likely to walk the streets with resounding joy and profess the wonders of their love to God and humanity.

The balloons, the firecrackers, Christmas trees and paintings really make the whole event jolly and colourful. Crawling to the eleventh hour, one will be amazed that the aforementioned description of Xmas is just a tip of the iceberg. Children anxiously expect to be lavished and showered with all kinds of Xmas surprises. Well, some of these Xmas surprises are even not anticipated.

These earth-shattering Xmas gifts comprise money, new clothes and shoes, teddy bears, flowers, the warmth of loved ones and the planning of romantic karaoke dates with our cherished ones and above all, the joyful hopes of seeing distant relatives who have been away for a very long time. At least we could get some cookies and toffees.

The old but enjoyable rituals in Xmas are slowly paving way to the evergreen waves of modernity and globalization. Certain rituals will forever remain mysteries to those who will be born in the wake of modernity and technology and perhaps those who are still crawling by now.

The sons and daughters still unborn will not be permitted by the height of globalization and modernity to enjoy Christmas in the villages in the total absence of electricity. Thanks to modernity and technology. Such times may be considered as uncivilized and primitive but I can proudly say that those days and nights spent together were full of endless joy. I have got you thinking of my age right? Interestingly, I am certainly not as old as Methuselah but most importantly, trust me when I say that I am not a teenager either.

The sons and daughters still unborn and those enjoying Xmas in towns and cities will never know that rice and chicken which can now be served and eaten everywhere and at any time was an expensive meal in the villages. Rice and chicken only became visible and quite ubiquitous in the festive seasons. This sumptuous meal was every child’s delight. We were circumspect about how we ate this meal because you will never want it to finish pretty soon. We made merry in the full glare of the moon and stars in the sky in the evening.

The grown-ups would crown it all with a jam which thrived on the energy generated from a generator. The littluns like me sat by the fire side and listened to the refreshing Ananse stories brewed and woven by our grandparents and the elderly. We climaxed it all with the refreshing games like “hide and seek”, “pilolo” and “pooli”. Did I just not talked of us going to wish people “merry Xmas” in order to be given money and other gifts?

The unborn sons and daughters who will be living in the lap of luxury will never know that we esteemed our Christmas shoes to the extent of using them as pillows on the eve of Christmas. These shoes and clothes were shown to us at the last-minute to Christmas. You will be awake time and time again in the midnight only to catch a glimpse of your clothes and shoes before the D-DAY. The shoes are worshiped and adored because school will resume very soon in January and one can’t just wait to show the new shoes to friends and class mates.

Fascinatingly, our Xmas shoes and clothes were always over-sized. This was with the aim that they could be worn for many years after Xmas. It was a crime to wear shoes and clothes of your size. One needed to insert mountains of folded papers at the extreme ends and sides of the shoes in order to prevent the shoes from wobbling anytime we walked. Funnily enough, these shoes spoilt faster at a deteriorating rate than expected.

In festive seasons like this, we were always at the beck and call of our parents and guardians. A little disobedience and you will be forfeited of your Xmas privileges. You will be reminded of how they struggled to eke out a living and also tried to buy those shoes and clothes for you. It is all joy to reminisce about these years of Xmas.

A little bird has just whispered to me that “If those born in the 90’s are flaunting their Xmas experiences right under the noses of the elderly, what then will those born in the 80’s and 70’s say?”

Well, what do you remember? Happy Xmas in advance.

My felicitations to all avid readers

Columnist: Effah Elvis