On your marks, get set, go!
And off we were to the grounds for three days of games, sports, and good old fashioned fun under the sun.
Preparations had been underway for over a week. So much to be done. Pruning grass in the grounds, marking courts and tracks with white ash and limestone, marching practice, getting first-aid ready. And guess who did the work? No, not teachers or staff. But the enterprising and industrious students of The Satsang Vidyalaya, Madanapalle, with some guidance from teachers. It was clear who was in charge: students and it was their Sports Meet.
The Annual Sports Meet commenced on November 23, 2017. The opening was marked by a solemn march past, oath taking and rousing speeches by our Chief Guest, Mr. P. Anilkumar, Madanapalle Station Fire Officer, and Guest of Honour, Mrs. T. Radha, Municipal Councillor of Gandhipuram. Mr. Anilkumar cuts an inspiring figure for our children. Likewise, Mrs. Radha as the first woman councillor of Gandhipuram, a municipality where many of our children reside, is a stalwart role model. Mrs. Radha has also reposed faith in us; both her children study at The Satsang Vidyalaya.
A coin toss and an inaugural game of tennikoit by sub junior girls: tennikoit is played on a tennis style court with a rubber ring tossed between four players and our children enjoy it tremendously. Amidst applause and bated breath, the rallies were watched by the entire school.
This event kick-started three days of over 10 events for each age group.
For our youngest children, Biscuit Bite, Lemon and Spoon Race, sack race, and musical chairs kept the adrenalin pumping for students and smiles coming for teachers.
For other students, track and field events like sprints, relays, high jump and long jump, kho kho and kabaddi, throwball and tennikoit, saw full participation. Slow cycling races were also serious sport, albeit with a touch of humour.
What was delightful to see was the enthusiasm of the children through all three days. They turned out in their sports best- faded shorts and threadbare tees. Choice of shoes? Not an issue as almost everyone participated barefoot. What is often taken as essential for playing sports turned out to be entirely dispensable, or so our children demonstrated to us. Who could be bothered about sports gear and brands of shoes when more important matters were at stake for their very own Sports Meet?
With replenishments of lemonade, bananas and soul-satisfying vegetable pulao and payasam, our children revived their energy stores and participated day after day, event after event with unbounded enthusiasm.
A cricket match and flag unfurling served as closing events followed by the moment all the children were waiting for: distribution of certificates of merit with loud cheering and applause.
Many thanks are in order. To the kind staff at the Swasthya Kendra for tending to our athletes. And to our sponsors. Without your support, our children could not have dreamt of holding their very own Annual Sports Meet.
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– Teachers of The Satsang Vidyalaya