The Christmas Cake Haters’ Club


The Christmas Cake Haters’ Club

Illustration: Shivali Devalkar


his morning my friends Rina and Siddharth were driving around Bangalore to tackle the trillion of tasks that emerge when a Nair and a Catholic plan to wed a week before Christmas. The dog had to be crated to their new home in South Africa; Salman Khan-the-blouse-tailor, Nancy-the-gown-designer and a number of Jesuit priests had to be seduced into blessing this unholy matrimony. But in the midst of this madness, there was one thing Rina had still set aside time for – Christmas fruitcake!

Now I detest Christmas cake; I think it’s best suited as a violent missile against a purse-snatcher or someone who cuts in line at the ATM queue. Frankly, if the purse-snatcher snatched some of that cake too, I wouldn’t chase him down. But the thrall of cake is so strong in Rina that she cannot help it. She made time to finish her annual baking practice. Mountains of chopped raisins and nuts were prepared. She has made Christmas cake every year with her mother since she was six. She doesn’t have a sweet tooth, but she can’t imagine Christmas without a fruitcake.