The three week stay of the Millhillians flew by and all too soon the time came to bid them farewell. We arranged a Thanksgiving function and annual prize distribution ceremony on July 19th. As usual it was a happy occasion but tinged with sadness as we were saying goodbye to so many friends, The eighteen Millhillians and five teachers had made a great impact on our daily lives.
The Millhillians wore Indian dress for the ceremony: the girls in saris and the boys in kurtas, and very impressive they looked.
After a heart touching Thanksgiving song by the school choir the Millihillians were invited onto the stage where our Principal gave a brief speech about each of their contributions during their stay and thanked them sincerely, remarking on the value of the meaningful partnership between Sri Jayendra and Mill Hill.
Mr.R.Chiinaswamy I.P.S Commandant, Tamilnadu Special Police, Manimutharu Battallion graced the occasion by presiding over the function and we were honoured to have Mr.A.Perumal, District Revenue Officer, Tirunelveli as the chief guest.
An enchanting performance by our school choir captivated the audience. During his presidential address Mr. Chinnaswamy appreciated the Arabic and Nepali songs for the native and original tunes. Some Millhillians also gave a musical performance that entertained the audience.
A prize distribution ceremony followed – the distinguished guests presented the general proficiency prizes for the previous academic year and prizes for the school toppers in the Board examinations . The prestigious Lalitha Kailasam Memorial Awards were also conferred to the toppers of class X, XI and XII.
The Bharatanatyam performance by our alumni enraptured everybody and our pupils then performed a remarkable dance, to music written by Jesu Rajan, depicting the lifestyle of the people of the ‘Five types of Land’ of ancient Tamilnadu The dacoits were probably the audience’s favourite. The dance left the audience spellbound and they were pleased to see some of the Millhillians as members of the dance group.
Many personal farewells were said at the dinner afterwards which was held on the basketball court: tears were shed on both sides.
The next day, a Saturday, the Millhillians left for Kovalam and the Hostel where they stayed was frantically prepared for the Emanuels who were to arrive at breakfast time the next morning.
The group from Emanuel School, also in London, arrived after their long journey in a bemused state and started to adjust to life in India.
The fourteen pupils and four staff will be with us for three weeks and we look forward to their stay. They will be spending a great deal of time with children from the Gita Krishnamurthy Vidyalaya, our free primary school with which the Emanuels have a special link.