As we spent a very quiet Christmas eve yesterday, my mind flew back in time to the days when we were kids. ‘Today is Christmas eve’ – my grandfather’s words still ring in my ears. The 10 days when schools were closed, and all we did as kids from day break to night was playing around, eating anything that came our way – especially the slightly stale, rock hard plum cakes with equally hard 1 inch icing – I miss those days. The days when cycling wasn’t a self imposed punishment to keep in shape, the days when finance management was all about whether to spend money on ice sticks or hard boiled sugar candies, the days when an achiever was the one who collected maximum number of pamphlets running behind announcement vehicles. Oh, why is past so pleasant after it is past? Christmas for me is very different today – the settings have changed, the world has got nuttier and wilder, but there’s one thing I still get – my share of plum cakes. When I get home this time again, I am sure the place would be smelling of cakes, and my father would be waiting for me to cut the chunkiest one of ’em all. Time may have taken away my grand father, but it is still his words that announce the arrival of Christmas to me.