3 years ago
Christmas fever grips Kathmanduities
Before bidding farewell to 2017, there awaits a grand exuberance of Christmas to fill the air with jingle bell songs and Christmas carols. With Christmas illuminating many cities in different parts of the world, Kathmandu is no exception. The shops are adorned with Christmas trees and toys, while numerous events and parties imply that the festival has gripped the denizens of Kathmandu.
Christmas started gaining popularity among Nepalis after the government declared it a national holiday. Nepal is politically structured as a democratic country, while equal priority is given to a diverse community and their cultural festivals. The country has been observing festivals of diverse religions with much fervor.
Christmas has become an occasion for celebration and youngsters are more into gifting. “As the trend of gifting cards seems to have been replaced with toys and key rings, we have included many gift items targeting youths. The gifts popular among Christmas enthusiasts are stationery items and tea cups with Christmas designs,” said Sunita Kayastha, owner of Archies Gift Shop at Tusal.
“We have been in the business for eight years now and more than half of our products are sold every year. Since the demand for Christmas trees and costumes are getting higher, we have also added them for sale,” added Kayastha.
Meanwhile, Grade IX students Rashila Ghimire, Doma Sherpa and Saraswati Shrestha at Mount Summit School, Jorpati were spotted shopping for Christmas gifts. “Like every year, we have planned to celebrate Christmas with the school family and we are here to buy Christmas tree as well as the items that would go for its decoration,” they said. Adding further Rashila said, “I believe occasions like these are necessary as it builds religious harmony and strengthens bonding between the countrymen. Celebrating Christmas is a step toward inviting religious equality in our country’s secular diversity.”
The charm of this festival probably lies on the culture of exchanging gifts and affection among family members, friends and relatives. Moreover, the undying tales of Santa Claus keep children amused and guide them.
21 year old Pinkey Lama, a saleswoman at Archies Gift Gallery in Old Baneshwar, swears by the gifts that they sell for kids every Christmas. “The highly saleable items at our store are Santa hat, costume for children, decorative and Christmas themed items. The groups of people that usually drop in at our store are children and college students so we keep the products targeting these groups,” said Lama.
The influence of social media has also resulted in people picking up western trends. Youngsters mostly purchase items and exchange gifts in order to get regaled by the festive season and update their social media accounts with new pictures. Likewise, many events and parties are held in different lounges as well as clubs in the city which help people find an occasion to socialize and take the time out from their hectic work schedule,” said Prashamsha Dahal, owner of Archies Gifts and Toy Shop in Chabahil.
Moreover, 42-year-old Father at Assumption Church, Dhobighat, Robin Rai is prepping up to welcome Christmas. He finds it a moment of glory to celebrate the festival in a spiritual manner by gathering in the church and offering prayers for humanity’s peace as well as harmony. “I think the important part of any celebration is offering prayers and exchanging affection among one another. The motive of celebration is to commemorate our creators and be thankful for whatever we are gifted with. Therefore, whichever way we opt to celebrate any festival, it should result in every individual’s growth,” said Father Rai.
Nepal, also known as the country of festivals, is probably called so as Nepalis are friendly to every sort of celebration. No matter how religiously valued the festivals are, the underlying essence of any occasion is to have a good time together, socialize and celebrate the similarity in each other’s differences.