Christmas past

Christmas is just around the corner and it’s steadily approaching fast. It’s just a week away. All the shopping that I had to do has been done with the exception of one. All the cards that I need to write and has written. The only thing left to do is to wrap up the presents and deliver the cards.

Throughout my life, I wasn’t always this big of a fan of Christmas. I don’t think I did much when I was younger. The obvious reason was that I couldn’t afford it. I know that Christmas isn’t all about the gift exchange but more about doing something nice for your family and friends. My childhood Christmas was much different than it is now.

When my family first arrived in Canada, it was summer. Back in Thailand, it was just as warm so we have no problem adjusting to the new world. It wasn’t until winter came that things changed.

Some would say that people from countries that do not have snow would be surprised to see it for the first time. My reaction to seeing snow falling from the sky for the first time was nothing like they mentioned. My eyes did not widen out of amazement. I saw white stuff falling from the sky but I didn’t care. I had no emotion towards seeing snow. I wasn’t even the least bit curious about it. My parents told me what it was and then I just went back to watching television.

Our first Christmas together is something that I still recall. My dad bought Christmas lights and hung up on the wall of the apartment. The cool thing about the lights was that it would turn on as soon as my dad whistled. I tried to turn it on with my whistling but I didn’t know how so it didn’t work. Then my dad would clap and it would turn on. So I tried it too but I couldn’t clap loud enough. I was amazed! I thought my dad had magic powers.

I searched around the whole apartment for a remote of some sort. Our television had a remote to turn it on so I thought it was something like that. It wasn’t until one day when my dad started whistling in a certain direction. That was the day that I had caught on to what was happening.

I waited until he went to work and start checking behind our couch. I followed the lights to a wall jacket. The light didn’t plug directly into the wall jack but into some device. I blew into it and the lights turned on! I was shocked. I didn’t know what this thing was but I knew that it would turn on the lights every time I made some sort of noise. I tried clapping and that made the lights turn off. Since I was closer it than before, I didn’t have to whistle or clap as loud to make it work. I thought this thing was a cool piece of technology. I didn’t tell my brothers about it though because I wanted to be a magician like my dad. I know now that the little sound activated device is known as The Clapper.

Along with the Christmas lights, my dad got us a Christmas tree as well. It was a small tree that was about no taller than a foot. At the time, we didn’t care how tall it was. All we were excited about was that we actually had one. It had miniature ornaments on it too. The ornaments consisted of presents, candy cane, Santa, some reindeers and a star at the top. The street was placed on top of the television and it shone brightly in the night.

I found out one night that the candy canes were actually real candy canes. I thought they were fake ones but when I went to play with the tree, one of the candy canes fell off. That was when I noticed that the clear plastic wrap was peeling. I don’t know what it was but something told me to lick it. And that’s what I did. It tasted minty and I never had mints before.

Just like the time I found out about the clapper, I didn’t tell anyone about the candy canes. I think by the time Christmas arrived, all the candy canes disappeared from the tree. I think that’s how I got into the habit of taking candy canes off a tree. A few years ago, I did the same thing at my friend’s house. They had the candy canes that came in different colours and flavours. By the time I left their house, half of the candy canes were gone. Mind you, I don’t do that anymore but to be on the safe, you should keep an eye on me if there are candy canes on your tree.

Clap on! *clap clap*
Clap off! *clap clap*
Clap on, clap off! The clapper!

I laugh every time I see this commercial. It’s was a cool concept at the time but the lady at the end just cracks me up. She claps her hands twice and looks like she just passes out.