For a thirteen-year-old belonging from a typical middle-class family walking into a five star (so called) hotel can be a harrowing experience. Usually, five stars meant shower caps, miniature soaps and some lotions which were always a part of gifts when my father returned from a tour or some relative came to meet our family. Forget staying for a night even a meal was out of the question. So finally when I was entering Great Eastern Hotel to attend an audio cassette launch from my father’s organisation it was both a celebration as well as a bunch of unfulfilled expectation.
Great Eastern Hotel for me was like what we associate Harrods of London. It was much more than just a hotel but a shopping destination for many. From Queen Elizabeth II, Rudyard Kipling, Mark Twain and many other luminaries it was my turn to step into the “Jewel of the East”.
I know its way past the Christmas season but I am sure you will definitely agree that there is no particular season for enjoying a good fruit cake. Many of my friends after reading many of my Christmas and Christmas cake related blogs had asked me about the exact place where the cakes are baked and how it’s actually done. So finally I have decided to spill the bean once in for all so that you know the real mystery behind those delicious pieces of Christmas Fruit Cake.
Christians have very few festivals so we tend to extend the Christmas fun as much as possible. The best example for this is that of “Boxing Day”, traditionally this was observed a day after Christmas that is 26th of December. On this day the rich and high in the society used to distribute gifts to the servants and to the general population in boxes and thus the tern “Boxing” got derived from it. It has nothing to do with Boxing the sport but more to do with packing of gift in boxes.
Calcutta during the month of December puts up a new makeup and for a month and completely transcends in to a party mood. Calcutta somehow gets associated with Christmas celebrations much more than any other city in India according to me, it may be due to its colonial heritage that Christmas in Calcutta is something truly different.
I belong to a very tiny Bengali Christian community in this city and we do celebrate Christmas a little differently. Talking about Christmas the first thing that comes to our mind is Christmas cake, something without which Christmas is not really Christmas.