In my younger days, my dad would receive a lot of Christmas cards from his business associates and I think we did get some from family and friends as well. I would stick them onto the walls of our wooden house using cellophane tape, arranging them in the shape of a Christmas tree…and sometimes, I would hang them up on strings tied up using thumb tacks, one thing one would not be able to do today in our concrete homes.
Yes, we had a Christmas tree too, an odd looking thing with branches that resembled those brushes used for cleaning milk bottles…or worse, toilet brushes…but it was a Christmas tree and I found immense joy in taking it out year after year and decorating it…and of course, putting the presents at the foot of the tree, waiting for Christmas to come so I would be able to open them to see what was inside each of them.
Anyway, back to those Christmas cards, I got 3 from the Mouth & Foot Painting Artists (and of course, I sent them a cheque for what I received from them) and I quickly sent them to family and friends residing overseas in the hope that they would receive them in time. At the time of writing, I only know that my friend in Adelaide got hers while a cousin in Melbourne is on holiday in Las Vegas so she would probably get hers after that, and I have yet to get any news of the rest.
In the meantime, I went round the shops in town in search of Christmas cards to send to those within the country, only to be laughed at. “Nobody sends Christmas cards anymore!” they all said. Well, I was quite determined and would not give up and finally, I found these…
…at the Religious Articles Shop at the Catholic cathedral here, only RM3.60 for 12 – so very cheap, only 30 sen each and they were all so beautiful and I loved the words inside some of them. I remember how my Dad was very particular in choosing his Christmas cards to send to people and they must mention Christmas specifically. No, those with only “Season’s Greetings” would not do, not at all.
It used to cost only 10 sen to send a card within the country, unsealed, 15 sen for a letter but when I went to send them, the guy at the counter said it would be 50 sen each and if I am not wrong, that would be the special for Christmas thing. Letters these days cost 80 sen…or more, depending on the weight. Ah well!!! It’s only once a year…and yes, I did buy a lot to keep for next year and the years to come. My sister remarked that the envelopes would turn yellow but no, that did not deter me. It’s the thought that counts, that’s my fervent belief.
I was thinking I would not be getting any this year as there were none forthcoming when just the other day, out of the blue, the Poslaju van stopped by my gate and I got this lovely Christmas card…
…from my dear uncle (my mum’s youngest brother) and auntie and my cousins in Kuching. They had sent it by courier service for fear that it would not reach me in time – isn’t that so sweet and thoughtful of them?
This one came from another auntie in Kuching, my mum’s late brother’s wife, and my cousin and hubby…
…and believe it or not, they got the card…
…all the way from Perth, Australia – the children & their families are there! It seemed that they too had difficulty getting hold of Christmas cards in Kuching.
And talking about Perth, this beautiful one…
…came from my cousin there. I loved the golden reindeer sticker seal…
…on the envelope and inside, she wrote this…
Indeed, in the good ol’ days, at this time of the year, we would be looking forward the the Christmas Eve dance at the Sibu Recreation Club (SRC) and there would be one on New Year’s Eve too…and another one on Chinese New Year’s Eve and no, we would not miss a single one. We all loved dancing so much, dancing for the sheer fun of it and we sure had a great time when these festive seasons came around.
Well, time sure has changed. For one thing, I am getting fewer and fewer Christmas cards each passing year – I did get quite a few in 2015 but the number dwindled in 2016…and in 2017. I guess the time will come when I will not be getting any anymore and in the event of that happening, I certainly would feel that something has gone missing from the spirit of Christmas, something like in the words in this song…
“You know, I don’t know why
I get to feeling sentimental
About this time, every year.
But every time I see a Christmas card,
I somehow can’t help reminiscing…
…I thrill with every word, every line
Guess I’m always sentimental ’round this time
Pardon me if a tear falls among my Christmas cheer
It’s the mem’ry of an old Christmas card…”
Anyway, card or no card, let us give thanks and praise to the Lord above that we are blessed with this opportunity to wish one and all a Holy and Joyous Christmas…
…in whichever way we choose. Happy Christmas!
7 thoughts on “The spirit of Christmas past…”
Blessed Merry Christmas to your and your loved ones.
Thanks, and to you and yours. Joy to the world!
Merry Christmas, Arthur! Ah, I am guilty of not sending Christmas cards anymore for the past many years. Yes, I do remember the good old days when it was such a joy to receive greeting cards in the mail.
Thanks. Bring it back! Sure is a whole lot more meaningful than sending greetings online – I hear they are still very much into it overseas.
such lovely cards – the artists have true talent 🙂 thanks for sharing a bit of beauty on this christmas day – hope you and your family are enjoying a good celebration 🙂
Yes, thanks. Can’t complain…especially at my age, so thankful for the joy and goodwill…and of course, the good food, at such happy celebrations.
Merry Christmas! Hope your day is filled with joy.
Yes, thanks. Had a pretty good Christmas day. A Happy Christmas to you too!
Blessed Christmas to you and your family, STP
Thank you and the same to you and yours, cheers!
The first card looks religious, nice! I like the font used and the green colour in the second card, as for the third card i like the dark green colour, this year i did not receive any christmas card, only those christmas video clips in whatsapp
I got a few e-cards and videos via Messenger on Facebook – I did not even bother to click and see, just sent a LIKE icon back. A lot sent their greetings via my Facebook page and I just LIKEd too. I wish everyone would go back to these good old-fashioned cards – the effort makes it all the more meaningful.