A Hectic Trip to England …by Anton Karunakaran (aka - PSK)
Whenever my wife, Liza, arranges me to chaperon my daughters on a trip, I gleefully accept it in the hope of playing golf while my daughters attend to their business. However, my hopes were dashed this time as the weather in England turned distinctly cold despite the global warming, much debated in Copenhagen. I was too busy in London, letting my daughter see London with her own eyes and the London Eye. I had to settle for indoor cyber-golf as flurries and wind-chill reminiscent of Canadian winter greeted me in Nottingham. I spent my days in Nottingham shopping after learning that the city has been voted best in Europe for Christmas shopping. Whenever, my weary legs refused to budge I slid into a pub and had a pint of lager while watching cricket and football on television. We literally drove through Manchester, Curry Mile and all, spending just one night there. Despite the rush, our gracious hosts in Manchester gave us a sumptuous meal and a midnight tour of the city; it was awesome.
I did entertain the thought of attending St Antony’s Alumni Reunion Dinner on Saturday, December 19, 2009. It would have been a feast of nostalgia for me, meeting my childhood friends, class mates and perhaps some of my teachers. It would have also been a thrill for me as the President of the alumni is a relative of mine; affable, inspiring and enormously interesting Mano Manuelpillai. Mano and Stanley have somehow developed a formula for taking care of serious business without losing the sense of humour and penchant for fun; a family trademark, I may add. The Dinner & Dance would have been a memorable experience to my daughter Tessa who I could say is also a product of St Antony’s College, in more ways than one. Her grand dads are my father Mr. Philipupillai and late Mr. Marianayagam who taught at St Antony’s College before his sojourn to Africa.
Thanks to John Nicholas, I met a few of my old friends and I offer my sincere apologies to everyone else I couldn’t. If you want me to fill in, I qualified as a Chartered Accountant in Sri Lanka (1980) and worked in Africa and New Zealand for CA firms. I also worked in London briefly but settled in Toronto, Canada (1992) for the long haul. The amazing thing about us parents is our single-minded devotion to our children’s success and well-being. It is therefore absolutely gratifying to see how well the children have responded with their dedication and hard work resulting in a string of success stories throughout the world. My father’s favourite past time, even as he nears 90, is relating stories about his students and their success both academic and in sports; now he has the added pleasure discussing the phenomenal feats of the younger generation.
Give the utmost for the highest; Let that always be our aim
Strive to gain from life the fullest; For that real fame
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Philipupillai Stanislaus Karunakaran AntonE-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org