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It’s Beginning To Smell A Lot Like Sinterklaas

, , , , , , | Related | May 30, 2018

This takes place about ten years or so ago. It’s the fifth of December. It’s a holiday called Sinterklaas, originally a children’s holiday where they get presents, but at this point of time I still celebrate it with my parents for the fun, even though I’m already a teenager.

We have this big bag of presents, with most presents bought by my parents, a few by me, and also some by my grandmother. Since I was little, my grandmother has handed Sinterklaas presents to all her children to put in the bag for them and their children.

We haven’t realised it yet, but most likely at this point my grandmother is already suffering slightly from dementia and the first few quirky things have started to show up. One of them is the gifting of odd presents that don’t seem to fit.

That is also what happens this Sinterklaas. My dad opens a present that was clearly from my grandmother — we can clearly see it from the wrapping paper; my parents and I used the same stash of wrapping paper, but my grandmother had her own to use, of course. The gift is a can of deodorant spray. Now, my mother has been pushing my dad to use deodorant for years, but he has always refused. He’s always been that smelly man you meet on a hot day. My mother and I give each other an awkward look because we both realise that is not the best gift my dad could have gotten, and my dad puts it down and forces out a, “Thank you, Sinterklaas.” After the unwrapping, we talk about it, and we conclude my grandmother has forgotten my dad doesn’t use deodorant.

My dad, however, is not one to waste gifts, so he says he’ll use it only on special occasions or very hot days. At first, he does this. We expect him to stop when the can is done. Indeed, the first few months after the can is finished, there is no other, but all of a sudden another one pops up from a different brand.

Now, quite a few years onward, my dad is using deodorant every day. My mother and I talked about it recently and we realised that with my grandmother’s most likely dementia-induced, misguided gift… she actually got my dad to see the use of deodorant. We can’t tell her this, because now her dementia has gotten quite bad and she doesn’t take in any new information anymore, but my mother and I certainly are very grateful for this.

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