It was on Mother’s Day of 1909 that Father’s Day was born.
Sonora Smart Dodd was raised by her father after her mother passed away and, as she listened to the Mother’s Day sermon at her church in Spokane, Washington, she felt that there should be a special day to commemorate her father too. She chose her father’s birthday, 19 June, to do so.
Seahorse: Ernest Massuet’s sculpture ‘The Father’.
Later, Dodd began striving to legitimize Father’s Day and achieved her goal 42 years later when then president Richard Nixon declared Father’s Day (the third Sunday of June) as a federal holiday in the US.
The concept of “celebrating” one’s father on a particular day is still foreign to most Indians. For Niharkia Sahni, a student of Delhi University, Father’s Day is more of a “Hallmark-Archie’s conspiracy” than a special day to thank your father. The same goes for Madhur Shende, a consultant with Mercer Consulting, who believes that “any day is a good day to thank your dad”.
Gauravjit Singh Kochhar, director of Giggles, a gift shop with branches in Delhi and Kolkata, confirms that the idea of Father’s Day is yet to catch on. He says sales for Father’s Day is similar to sales on any given day. It’s nothing exceptional, unlike days such as Valentine’s Day when gift shops are swamped with customers.
Amit Kumar, a trainee with Thomson Reuters, sums the mindset well when he says that thanking one’s father should be a continuous process and not a single-day event. “My father spent half his life making me what I am today. If I do my work honestly and with sincerity, I don’t think there is a better gift for him,” he says.
But Kochhar adds that the trend of celebrating Father’s Day is picking up, especially among children who are encouraged by their teachers and mothers to make “I love you Daddy” cards.
Sharp dressing: Men’s wear by Arrow.
Akshata Pundir, a flight attendant with Kingfisher Airlines, adds that occasions such as these become special when one is away from one’s family and provide a good excuse to drop home. Sameer Mehta, a co-pilot with Air India, sends his father cards on the day and wishes him over the phone too. Mehta considers Father’s Day as an opportunity to make his dad feel special.
If you want to make your father feel special, here a few options for a surprise gift:
*Gift him the poignant Lladro figurine ‘The Father’ sculpted by Ernest Massuet.
Priced at Rs36,000, it is available at Atria, The Millennium Mall, Dr Annie Besant Road, Worli, Mumbai; South City mall, Prince Anwar Shah Road, Kolkata; and Select Citywalk mall, Saket, New Delhi.
*Buy him Arrow menswear and avail of special gifts such as an Arrow photoframe for purchases worth more than Rs1,500, a shirt worth Rs1,399 for purchases worth more than Rs3,499, and a blazer worth Rs3,499 for purchases above Rs10,000.
*If your dad is fashion conscious, then pick something from Study by Janak, which is offering accessories such as shoes for Rs3,490-Rs6,990, ties for Rs1,490-2,290 and belts for Rs990-2,590. Visit the Study by Janak stores at Ajmal Khan Road, Karol Bagh, and South Extension, Part-I, New Delhi, or at DLF Grand Mall, Gurgaon.
La royale: Restive holidays at Devi Garh, Rajasthan.
* You could also treat your father to a lavish meal at Kylin, Sartoria or Ivy. The three Delhi restaurants are offering special four-course menus with a glass of wine complimentary for fathers. The buffets are priced at Rs1,500 per person plus taxes.
Kylin, 24, Basant Lok, Vasant Vihar; Sartoria, Basant Lok, Vasant Vihar; and Ivy Bar & Dining, Lotus Tower, New Friends Colony. For reservations, contact +919871757744
*Surprise your dad with a Rajasthan holiday package offered by the Devi Garh Resort. The package includes double occupancy accommodation in a suite, a guided village walk, a visit to the 14th century Jain temples at Dilwara and activities such as trekking, golf putting. The Garden Suite is priced at Rs13,000 (tariff per night). For reservations contact 09928972211 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
* Gift your father ‘the magic mug’ by Snapfish which can display a picture collage of him as soon as a hot beverage is poured into it. It is priced at Rs699 (For father’s day, you can avail of a 20% discount). Visit www.snapfish.in for details.