Dear Santa Claus,

As a little country in the middle of the most beautiful ocean, Mauritius is bracing with eagerness to receive you in the early hours of Christmas day.

Rama Valayden

We have cleaned everywhere. There is no longer, as last year, plenty of rubbish everywhere you have been visiting with your pit-less bag overloaded with magical wands.
Distant memory! Yes, as a nation, we are no longer using plastic bags nor are we using plastic bottles. In fact, we have banned all bottles. Our ocean and rivers are breathing again. You will have noticed when you plunge the Batman way that on every sugar cane field we planted thousands of trees. Thousands of trees were rooted on the Day of
Love – 14th February by all of us to show our love to those who will be born in years to come.

You were angry that there were no trees on our newly built roads. Terminalia Arjuna and Flamboyants of different colours have been planted and nurtured by all our school and college children. At the airport and at many other spots you will be welcome by the nice
smell of “Raat ki Rani”; by so doing we have become the fi rst nonstressed nation according to the World Health Organisation. You told us that when you fl y in the air of Terre-Rouge and the Port area your nostrils were assaulted by the foul smell, which caused you to have a hiccup on your way to Reunion Island. The problem has been solved. Saturn, the ancient Roman God of agriculture, is very happy with us. You told us to make every Friday a non-working community and solidarity day. So, no more school, office and business day, but a community day with plenty of emphasis on environment
and solidarity. Have you noticed that we now have several parks for bicycles? We are no longer running after cars… less pollution. Oh Father Christmas a result of mind blowing changes, the Government has also stopped the Metro Express Project and the money has been invested in different types of mini-modulable dams on the rivers and solar power plants around the country. Father Christmas we have behaved… Prison population is down. The former Melrose Prison is now a great inter-generational university. Also we have changed our drugs policy, so traffi ckers are no longer thriving. Care everywhere. No more repression but rehabilitation.

So for 2018 please bring for our country, which will celebrate its 50th Independence Anniversary:
1) The magical powder of love… love thy neighbour so that we start living our national anthem.
2) The special syrup against big egos… as in Mauritius we have “Misie ek Madam Konn Tou” everywhere.
3) The special massaging cream for us to become less materialist.
4) The recipe to put into action a new permanent education “wave” where the mind is without fear, where knowledge is free, where the world has not been broken up into fragments… Oh yes, in the spirit of Tagore, a system where no need to be saddled by the
weight of schools… The Philosopher Ivan Illich, “society without school will be jumping with joy”.

In fact, now I know Santa that you do exist and you come for not from Nordic countries but from another planet. So your wish for us is: “awake”. You are the most generous alien.

Thank you oh Father Christmas.
Now I will close my eyes and meditate. Maybe like Elvis Presley I will see an old Christmas
card. In my dream Santa Claus was not a dream.
Yours , in Peace.

RAMA VALAYDEN