Mid Town Awrudda… For those of you who have been in the club long enough to celebrate the Sinhala and Tamil New Year in the previous years, the first three words might give you a different set of memories to cherish. But for the rest of us newbies the memories were made from an event held not so long ago.
Just like most other articles written at this point of time the writer would often emphasize saying, Due to the coronavirus… Everyone was instructed to stay home… Unlike the previous years… Decided to host online… Selected zoom as a suitable platform… Etc. You must have read that a 100 times but yes the reason still stays the same.
As I volunteered to the organizing committee I was clueless and was wondering how on earth would we celebrate the Sinhala and Tamil New year online. As time passed and when we started planning a clear picture started fitting into place and the excitement started building. 26th of April was decided as the date of the event. The 10th general meeting of the club was on the same day as well therefore it was decided to have the event after the meeting was concluded.
Rtr Shabeer and I had the privilege of hosting 6 games out of the finalized 7 while Rtr Dina and Rtr Nadeera took charge of the final game. Rtr Nadeera was also responsible for the introduction as well.
Everything’s ready but…… We weren’t alone! The Rotaract Club of Otway from Australia was invited to take part in this cultural event as well.
On the day of the event the team of 6 was ready and after the general meeting concluded Mid Town Awrudda started. As planned Rtr Nadeera started with the introduction to the festival while emphasizing the history and the importance of the festival. She also educated the gathering about the unique food items often eaten during the festive period.
Next in the agenda were the games which is to be hosted by Rtr Shabeer and myself. For a person who has the mic and video off at 99% of online meetings, it was making me nervous.
The first game was pinning the eye on the elephant… Online version of course. The participants had to guess the number that was covering the elephant’s eye which was represented in the image shared on screen. There were numerous answers including a few which was not even in the large animals’ body. A few members came very close to the correct number but only our very own secretary Rtr Nadeera Udawatta guessed the answer correctly.
The second game was the very famous “kana mutti”. Well we didn’t have three pots and a stick to expose our inner assassin’s but we did have a little something to make the participants test their memory. So a picture of three pots was shared and in one of these pots had toffees. Our competitive participants had to guess the pot and the number of toffees. One minute after the countdown started we didn’t have a winner as the answer in my opinion was certainly challenging.
Next was finding the hidden guest. A group photo of the 7th general meeting and a description of the guest was shared on the screen while the participants had one minute to guess who the person is. A number of cricket fans in the club were named by the participants based in the clues provided but nobody got the right answer even though my co-host partner Rtr Shabeer Ziyam was the hidden guest himself.
Moving on to the fourth game which was finding the hidden coin where an image of three plates filled with flour was shared where one of them had a coin also including a clue to the currency and value of the coin in the same image. The Rotaracters had to guess the plate and the value and currency of the hidden coin. The countdown started and participants from both clubs were typing down answers but it came down to the last 10 seconds when Rtr. Chirag Amit typed “50 cents Australian currency in plate A” which was indeed the correct answer.
With all that thinking and scratching of heads the participants deserved a break. And a break is exactly what they got when Rtr. Ashini performed a Sinhala song which as usual was melodious and delightful.
The next set of games included “Counting the seeds of the papaya”. Based on the clue provided the participants had to calculate the number of seeds available in the papaw. With the last few seconds remaining in the clock Rtr. IPP Insaf Ismail provided his answer which was 96 to win the game followed by Rtr. Chirag Amit while Rtr. Jeni came close to answering with 95.
Moving on to the last few games
The final game was finding the hidden gift. A riddle that describes the object was provided to the participants to guess the hidden object. It took only a few seconds before Rtr. Anjana Gajanayake typed down the answer while most other followed. It’s not surprising since the answer which was “Toilet paper” has been in great demand throughout the world.
The final game was the most anticipated one which is the Mid-Town awrudhu kumaraya and kumara. Rtr. Dina, Rtr. Nadeera and Rtr. Nipun were all part of the judge panel. With the videos turned on and the participants showcasing their traditional attire it was certainly a challenging task for the judges. After a few discussions the finalists were selected. Rtr. Sajid and Rtr. Ashmal from the guys while Rtr. Ruvini and Rtr. Geethma from the girls were chosen.
All eyes were on our president Rtr. Nipun to select the winners. After a few serious considerations we had our winners. Rtr Ashmal was crowned “Kumaraya” and Rtr. Ruvini was crowned the “Kumariya” of Mid Town Awrudda 2020.
Progressing to the latter part of the event Rtr. Jeni the president of the Rotaract Club of Otway shared her thoughts on the event and spoke about the ANZAC Day celebrated in Australia remembering their war heroes. She explained why they celebrated it and how they celebrated it to the Mid Town members sharing a bit of their culture with us.
Rtr Nadeera then concluded the event thanking the organizing committee for their hard work and the participants for being present.
Most of us may agree that this wasn’t the Avrudhu we wanted which is fair but when we think of it differently we are probably the first generation to ever host an Awurudhu celebration online and as Rotaractors we need to be proud as we’ve shown that even if we are miles away from each other we somehow managed to celebrate and uplift the festive spirit with the best of our resources.
Rtr. Umar Inthikab | Email: email@example.com