When I was a little baby, I used to look forward to Christmas so much. I still do, but not with the enthusiasm I use to. Some of the things that used to make me want to see the day soonest was the new clothes, (we used to call them nguo za maneti) , the Christmas carols in church, the handout, yes a good sum to spend, and the delicacies my mama devoted the whole day to making . I would wake up very early , despite the fact that I knew I was an owl at around three , just to make sure that I have enough time to flaunt my dress to the neighborhood . Dress and sport shoe was not a fashion crime. Chapatti, spaghetti and rice in one meal were not a diet offence.
Having grown up with my mama alone , I cherish every moment she went extra mile to ensure that our celebrations always beat the neighbors who would brag of how their dads had provided this and that. Sometimes I wish I had a memory of even one festivity spent with my dad, but too bad, I feel guilty I can’t however, my mama always outdid herself. No single xmas, at least until I was 12, did we have a half-baked celebration from my mum. From double new clothes, food or enough cash to go out with friends and have fun.
While we might not have time to spend time as a family anymore during such times, I always reflect on the memories and wish that I will always be there for my kids. I will always make them feel special. Sing Christmas carols and have all the good fun. My mama played my dad’s most expensive and special music instrument, kinanda. We would listen to Madelu system and the rest. She would tell us juke box stories about how they would request for a certain song to be played at a bar or dance sessions, tales of how my dad courted her (hats off for him, he did well) .
As I celebrate this Christmas alone, I have a wish list.
1. I will make Christmas special for my kids.
2. I will try to make sure that my family will always be together as long as it takes
3. I will remember someone who cannot celebrate
4. I will always have a special recipe for the day
5. Above all, I will teach my children the meaning of Christmas, the carols and will always tell them the story of the birth of Jesus.
But for this time, l will buy enough movies to watch and try out one of the recipes I have always wanted to do (mashed potatoes, peas, soft maize and carrots, vegetable salad and coated deep fried fish ) . I will sing the Christmas carols to myself call up my mama, bro and siz and laugh about all memories.
Santa, please bring me company, Amen.