Some places live with us. Among my few is Moore Market.
This December I want to go back in time.
For Moore Market got a life of its own at Christmastime.
Had it survived the fire that helped in its destruction it would have easily rivalled CitiCentre and Spencer Plaza and held its own.
There was so much to do at this market.
Pore over secondhand novels, try out smart frocks and Tees, sift through the decorations, marvel at the crib sets, take a look at the noisy parakeets and strike a deal with some antique pieces - Moore Market was a magical world at Christmastime.
Families from Narasinghapuram and Chintadripet, from Vepery and Perambur, from Arakkonam and George Towne had to check out this market at this time of the year.
I can't forget Thomas Rodrigo & Sons store which sold everything that a Christian family required. I particularly remember a smallmade man who had the gentlest of voices and slightest of frames who guided us through our shopping.
Then he was a mere salesman. Today, he appears to me like a gentle poet.
Rodrigo had a range of cribs and we bought one only at this store.
It also had a store in Broadway but I rarely stopped by there.
I think it still exists - perhaps living out the years.
Spencers of old was another hub. A hub to order the goodies - turkey and sauces and cheese and flour and all that which went to make a great Christmas lunch.
Old timers tell me that Spencers would bring in decorators to do up the entire place and in a prominent place, rotate cardboard numbers which set the countdown for Christmas - 8 more days to go! 7 more days to go . .
I wish San Thome got a life of its own.
Well after the rushhour traffic has died down on San Thome High Road, the stars that have been put up at St. Bede's school create a little magic off this road now.
I wish many others would follow St. Bede's and put out the stars all along this road, till the Foreshore Estate point. On rooftops, trees and balconies.
Some others could play carols on their music systems.
And some others decorate their trees with lights and buntings.
Some could keep their gates open and share kulkuls or a piece of cake with strangers who tarry to take in the ambience. . .
And young men with guitars and mouth organs could walk through Custian Beach and Rosary Lane, Dooming Street and Leith Castle, playing the songs of the season. . .
I wish San Thome got a life of its own at this time of the year.