Yesterday evening, December 19, 2012 an Annual Day for Monte de Guirim ex-students and their families was organized by Monte de Guirim Past Pupils’ Association at Monte de Guirim. My wife and I attended the function. It was quite grand.
Although I keep visiting Monte de Guirim whenever I get a chance, I make it a point to visit the school every time a book of mine is published so I can pass on a copy of the book to the library, but it was the first time that I attended an ex-students’ function. It was a good opportunity to visit my alma mater, where I met a few old timers – most of the attendees were 1968 batch onwards.
One Senior Friar, Fr. Dinesh (earlier John) Mendonça was felicitated for his long service. Ex-teacher, Joy, was also felicitated, and so were one Sports Person and one S.S.C. Topper.
Student activist-turned politician and ex-MLA of Dabolim constituency, Herculano Dourado, who passed out from Monte de Guirim the same year as I did (1965-1966), was felicitated for Life Time Achievement.
Herculano was one of the all-rounder students of Monte de Guirim. He was a studious boy, a footballer, an athlete, a gymnast, Assembly leader, a monitor, an orator – you name it. Herculano recalled some of the old teachers - Fr. Pacificus, Fr. Ephrem, Fr. Diogo who were instrumental in instilling academic, moral and spiritual values in us, which helped him build his career. He also recalled that unlike today, it was a boys’ school. As such, girls were a taboo, but we got a chance to look at girls from convents once a year when they attended our annual concert. Referring to the Liberation Day, Herculano told everyone present that though the Portuguese had long gone, some foreign items were still available for sale at the school’s store then.
It was great to meet and interact with Herculano and renew old friendship. I also met old-timers Francis aka Fanchu Silveira, Alban Fernandes, Gilman Fernandes, Jose Luis (my classmate in Special Class), Albert Goveia, retired Sr. Scientist at the NIO and many others. We sipped drinks, talked about good old days, inquired about our present lives and successes.
There was singing and dancing to the music of “Lui Solo n Live”. Food was catered by the ‘Merces Caterers’. Each entrant was charged a fee of Rs.350; snacks, soft and hard drinks were provided at an extra charge. Many prizes were given away for different activities. I was one of the winners of a prize – ‘person with most white hair and beard’!
The MC made an announcement and informed everyone that I authored three books - ‘Domnic’s Goa’ (2007) – a book on Goa’s customs and traditions; ‘Dispott’ttem Chintop’ (2009) – a Konkani book in Roman script on Goan sayings, and ‘Mapusa, Yesterday and Today’ (October this year) – a book on Mapusa half a century ago.
[as forwarded to gaspar almeida, www.goa-world.com on 19th December 2012]
[Pictures added by goa-world.com].
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