Some twenty years ago, Christmas in Ghana was described in one word as MAGICAL..
Magical, in the sense that it was a time to have new things; clothes, shoes, eat the best of foods at the nicest restaurants, to make that trip to visit relations, sending and receiving of Christmas cards and also a time for family bonding and having the ‘bronya’ hair done.
This season will not be complete without the singing of Christmas carols…
Now, fast track into today.. Everything has changed. From that special and magical feeling to an ordinary day celebration.
For even the children who are not bothered about happenings around them, they seem affected by this new development.
Previously, there was the feeling of wearing what we call in local parlance “bronya” dress and the “bronya” shoe. This was collected some days to Christmas. There was the making up of one’s hair at the saloon, fixing of nails and getting all excited for the big day called Christmas.
There was also a trip to visit extended family folks, who either lived within Accra or further from Accra. Many also travelled far for this trip just to spend Christmas with the extended family.
There was also the family bonding times, which mainly comprise of dining at restaurants or visiting places of interest to generate that family bonding. The yuletide season, previously was also characterized with the “bronya” hair do. At the days prior to Christmas, the saloons were busy with many people getting a special hairstyle done.
And oooo the icing on the cake then was the singing of Christmas Carols and the Christmas decorations that was visibly done in every home.
Now, all these have faded off. They seem to be usual or normal things we do all year through, hence nothing magical about it.
In an interview with a hairdresser about how busy she had been the days prior to the Christmas, she noted that it was not with pressure and was the usual regular work for her.
“Now there is no money and also due to urbanization many people get the opportunity to do these activities all year through, hence nothing special about Christmas. Now people fix hair on a normal day and do all these special things on any other day”, she reiterated.
The hairdresser further hinted that that magical spirit of Christmas might still reside in many who reside in the rural areas where doing such activities are not routine.
A restaurant owner said “Now most people eat rice every day and many other dishes, so there is nothing special. The seamstress tells me she has been busy with a few clients but does not amount to what pertained previously.
So it is seemingly clearly that the magic of Christmas has waned down, more especially when no one has the time to listen and play Christmas carols or even watch the regular birth of Jesus movies.
Could these changes be due to finances, technological advancement or just change… a change we need to accept and embrace.
No matter the few changes listed here, let’s me reminded that there are still more changes to come as we age with the season, but no matter what happens be mindful that Christ is the reason for the season and it is a season which is all about sharing, loving and caring , so show love to the needy or a less privileged person and stay blessed.
To bring back those Christmas memories.. Watch this Christmas carol to let you live those memories.