My Christmas traditions back home in India
I have always been very keen when it came to Christmas. Religiously my family does not celebrate Christmas, so I have not had the regular traditions as everyone else. However, my family and I love to do something anyway. In India, we have a week off for Christmas and New Years and it is festive around even though most of the population is not Christian.
Christmas School parties
Colleges host Christmas parties in schools and colleges before the break. Parties have Santa Claus and candies, ice cream, cake, and all kinds of sweets. As kids, it used to be fun to be around a new tradition. Moreover, we watched a Christmas movie before the break every year at school. I remember ‘The Polar Express’ to be my favorite one.
As the break began, it was a good time resting home and trying to catch up with learning about the festival. Our festival, Diwali, being just a month before Christmas, my brother and I did not really receive gifts again. We would get combined gifts for Diwali and Christmas. However, it was fun eating sweets and cookies.
For Christmas eve, my parents would make a nice dinner and we would have a great time. Followed by hot chocolate and a Christmas movie. It was any movie, as it was more about spending some quality time together.
The next day, we would all go to a place called the city center camp where there would be thousands of people hanging with their friends and family. The camp was lit up with a lot of lights and multiple Christmas trees. Stores selling cookies and cake. Restaurants and stores with huge Christmas trees and Santa Claus were the highlights of the evening. As a kid, I would collect candies from the Santa and eat all the sweets possible. We would have a nice dinner at a restaurant nearby to celebrate the evening.
Additionally, restaurants generally had Christmas jingles and happy vibes. Streets would be filled with vendors selling red heart-shaped helium balloons. You could write on them and carry them around all evening. At around 9 PM at night, we would all gather around the huge Christmas tree in the center and let our balloons go. The sky would be full of red balloons, and it was indeed the best Christmas feeling I have been a part of.
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