Shimla: Much to the disappointment of many, the December sky on Christmas Eve has been clear leaving holidaymakers out either shopping or sightseeing but depriving them of the magic moments of seeing a live snowfall that attracts most revelers here for the festive week.
Adding to the disappointment, Manmohan Singh, director meteorology said that the weather forecast was the sky was likely to remain clear over the next three to four days. â€œGoing by the prevailing conditions, it may not snow for New Years Eve also,â€ he said.
The weatherman reports the in the last 21 years, it has snowed twice only (1989, 91) for Christmas Eve and four times (1990, 95, 2000, 2002) for on New Yearâ€™s Eve.
Feeling the pinch, DP Bhatia, general manager at an Oberoi hotel said, â€œthe weather has played a spoilsport. The occupancy rate in most hotels is only 60 to 70 percent, whereas many of us were expecting a packed house, he added.
Though missing out getting to witness a snowfall, Alka and Nitin Batra, having taken a break to be in the hills for festive week were happy going out sightseeing. â€œWe did look forward to seeing a snowfall,â€ says Alka, â€œbut the morning and evening chill and the Sun too is enjoyable.â€
Nitin adds, â€œits not the first time I have come up here to witness a snowfall. Last time when I was here, in January, I did get to live out those magic moments.â€
Filmmaker Vivek Mohan, who divides his time between Mumbai and Shimla says, â€œa snowfall for Christmas or New Years was a regular feature upto the 1980â€™s but not since then.â€
With the Christ Church on the Ridge for a majestic backdrop, Mohan in 2003 made a documentary, â€œFor whom the jingle bell tollsâ€ recording the disappointment about not having snow for Christmas anymore.
Itâ€™s sad that itâ€™s a blue Christmas again, the bells toll to mark the birth of Christ but we all wait in vain to see a white Christmas again, said Mohan.