Our Annual School Sports Day fail normally in the month of May each year. It is not a very grand affair like some other schools, but it is about the grandest as far as our school is concerned, we have not considered a ‘premier’ school but we do what we can to make the Sports Day as memorable as can be. Sports Day is no different.
On the morning of the Sports Day, which is a Saturday, almost every student is involved in its preparation. The opening ceremony is due to start at 2 p.m. and there are many things to get ready before that. Many boys and girls are busy decorating their respective house booths so that they look as beautiful as possible. There is a prize for the best booth and each house (there are two of them) is set on winning the honor.
Some boy scouts are busy arranging chairs .in the pavilion just next ho the school- field. These chairs are for our guests of honor and the public who come to watch the events. The gardeners are busy decorating the pavilion with potted plants.
I help in polishing the challenge trophies and tying new ribbons onto them. Then with two more of my friends, we help the teacher-in-charge arrange the trophies and smaller medals. on a large table in front of the pavilion. They are to be presented to the winners later.
1:30 p.m. arrives and the school field is filled with students: The contingent of athletes stand ready in front of the pavilion. They are all dressed in white. The boys are in trousers and the girl’s skirts. Each of them has a colored sash across their chest to signify which house they belong to. It is quite a sight to see the flashes of fed, yellow, green and blue all neatly arranged in rows waiting for the opening ceremony to begin.
The other students wait at their booths. The guests wait at the pavilion. I wait at the prizes table with my two friends. We are dressed in our normal school uniform but we wear ties to smarten things up. It is hot wearing ties.
The monotonous music issuing from the four trumpet loudspeakers in the middle of the field suddenly ceases and a jagged voice announces the arrival of the Chairman of the School’s Board of Governors. All eyes turn to the group of people surrounding a big car at the entrance of the field.
Presently they walk to the pavilion and Sit down in the allocated places. Then the ubiquitous sound of ‘Colonel Boogie’s March’, more well-known as ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai fills the air and the contingent of athletes begin marching in tight formation.
They describe a pre-arranged pattern around the field and finally position themselves in front of the pavilion. The music stops and the Chairman gives a short speech after which he declares the Sports Day open.
Immediately after the opening ceremony, the events begin. The starter’s gun cracks many times to start the 100 m, 200 m, 400 rn, and other races. I myself have to take part in the 4 x 100 m for my house. I am not much of a runner, but they need someone to fill the team. Surprisingly we are second in the race. Well, second out of four competitors is not too bad.
I also help my teacher hand the prizes over to the VIP’s to present to the winners. Various people are called to give away prizes. They consist of people considered important by the school.
The events run off smoothly and at 4.30 p.m. we take a break for refreshments. After that, the remaining events are completed.
Six o’clock arrives and the closing ceremony begins with the contingent of tired but happy athletes marching around the field once again. It has been a great afternoon. The weather is wonderful, the spectators are Wonderful and everyone is happy. Finally, we gather around the prizes table in ordered formation while the Chairman’s wife gives away the challenge trophies. Shouts of approval and claps fill the air every time a winner is called.
After the last trophy is given away, the school captain leads the school n giving three cheers to the Chairman’s wife. As the roar of the cheers dies away, the murmur of contented voices is heard- as the people; students and guests alike, disperse and leave the field. It is indeed a memorable Sports Day.