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HONORING MY MOTHER | Streamrolled Christmas

By Icoy San Pedro

GROWING UP, we silently ticked the days leading to Christmas on the huge calendar tacked on the wall. However, as all children of the 60s knew, one at first had to go through Halloween, All Saints’ Day, then All Souls’ Day in order to get there. At least during them old days, these were the last blocks before Christmas Day, and they were ‘scaredy’ days for most of us. 

For starters, commercial radio (and much later Television) programs at the time during that duration already began featuring a week-long series of horror shows and tales, all in the spirit of what adults call as fun scare. In a sense, while it was fun-fare for them and an opportunity to make a quick buck for the stores, it was clearly dread for the younger ones who scampered like dogs at the sound of thunder. Throughout the years however, a lot have changed as the boomers turned into parents and began to see these dark age practices of scaring children as cruel.

So while Halloween turned grossly commercial and superhero masks began merging with those of Dracula’s, werewolves’ and the Swamp Thing’s, the calendar road leading to December 25, from any child’s perspective, was cleared of unwanted debris. Later on, Christmas would turn commercial too, but any child doesn’t know that.

And so it was…a clear path to Christmas, until Covid that is. Deadly bummer. I remember at one time, I heard one neighbor’s kid loudly exclaim, “What? No Christmas this year?” as he was safely led indoors. Indeed, that was definitely that. Before the pandemic, it had always been a long practice for us tiny fam to prepare a jar of chocolates and candies for all the subdivision children who came caroling during the holidays. For 2020 and 21, we had them “garapon” jars sitting on the mantle undisturbed and only to be sampled once or twice by us.  This year, we’ve a new one up there now and happily, it’s most pleasant to note that we have begun handing out some of the chocolate coins to a few children who have again dared to venture out and sing carols up our street. 

Two years ago, I had documented their coming. “There used to be an endless parade of little cherubs, some in full regalia, some in sando and slippers, but nevertheless all in stealth-mode, suddenly materializing at our gate each night, and singing their lungs out, 

“…bersing, bersing, bersing, preprem brim broom, preprem brim broom…!” Hopefully, more would come this year.

Meanwhile, talks of face-to-face reunions, office parties, group vacations and what-have-you, are already set on the table like battle plans. As it is, like the children of old finding the road to Christmas suddenly made clear, it’s full speed ahead. Who would have thought otherwise? 



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