Sydney Bens Curry Night
|A night of camaraderie and recognition!|
DOUG JONES writes...
It went off with a bang! Guests of the Sydney Bens Christmas Party and Curry Night
came streaming in to the North Rocks Don Moore centre even before opening time. All 300 Old Bens, families and guests sensed the electrified atmosphere as the Chris Pietersz trio rolled out dollop after dollop of much loved favourites. The dance floor was a swirl from the first beat on.
As Chris gave way to the other band, Yohan Pathinather and the Cazcades, the zest for the light fantastic grew in fervour. They jived and twisted, these glamorous youngsters and the sprightly young-at-heart, delightfully matching feet with tune to Sinhala words that melodically replaced the known English lyrics. Everybody was having a great time!
Singing of Christmas Carols had to take its rightful place. Under the leadership of the Committee’s leading vocalist Ranjith Velayuthen, ably backed up by Hyacinth Jones with Chris Pietersz on the keyboard, a 20-strong choir melded everyone to be immersed in the Spirit of Christmas.
Dinner was next on the cards. And Curry Leaf, with Asoka leading hands-on from the front, served a mouth-watering phalanx of steaming yellow rice, kotta roti, fish and chicken curry and that pukka rice puller crispy fried spratts, with the hottest of hot chilly sambols tossed in for the palates of the daring or the foolhardy.
At dinner’s end, feedback (no pun intended) was that the food was fabulous.
A vast array of prizes were donated by Old Bens and well-wishers and inevitably, the raffle draw followed.
It was also a night of recognition. There were some Old Bens who had to be suitably rewarded for their dedication in the loyalty to their Alma Mater. The first of those good people to be honoured was Wolstan D’Abrera. Wolly (as he is affectionately known to all) is the oldest Benedictine in Sydney and was made first-ever Patron of the Sydney Alumni Assocation at the 2006 AGM. He was presented with a porcelain replica of the College clock tower (one of the oldest buildings in Colombo and listed for heritage preservation). Also, Joe Rodrigo, Roger Weneden, Elmo Young, Dr Dan Godamunne and Kumar Subramaniam were awarded certificates on their appointment as life members of the OBA.
And the dancing followed (what did you expect!). Both bands rendered some superb numbers on their respective repertoires. Sentimental favourites and the ever-popular baila among Sri Lankan dance enthusiasts. No one went away disappointed – except that 12.30 AM was still too young in the night to terminate an enjoyable and unforgettable occasion.
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