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We revelled in the second alumni reception at AES (AIS forever for some of us!) last evening! Many more alumni students and faculty had registered their acceptance than finally showed up but it mattered little to a group of us from the 70s who were so happy to meet each other again on territory so familiar that each visit is a pilgrimage, truly a Yatra.
This group included some very special people who had flown in for the reunion: Aloka Dalal (from Kolkata) and Sid and Ghafoor Wahid (from Srinagar), those who were already in Delhi and made it a point to be at the reception: Maura Moynihan and VJ Chandok plus Delhiwallahs, Dolly Narang, Deepak Sen, myself and for the first time, I was delighted that Sumathy Unny Sodhi was able to come as well.
Over glasses of mulled wine and apple cider we retraced our lives back to graduation with those we were meeting after many years. The school was once again most hospitable: Dr Hetzel welcomed us and Peggy Sood announced awards for Distinguished Alumnus, Distinguished Faculty and Distinguished Friend. The awardees were: KC Seibert, Bandana Sen and Alfie Campbell, respectively.
Sharon Lowen gave away prizes for the best alumnus memory, and the first prize winner was Dolly! Sharon tried to impress upon me that our mascot was no longer the Tiger, but for some of us we will always be the Tigers !
AES has opened its arms to all of you out there very warmly so take advantage and come for the next reception! Thank you Dr Hetzel and thank you Preeti for all your hard work in making it happen again.
The reception continued with us of the 70s heading off to Deepak Sen’s (naturally !) house and the conversation over an endless round of snacks (Deepak and his wife, Madhu are famous for spoiling their guests) was riveting, the rest of us listened with rapt attention as Maura and Sid interacted about Tibet ! It was an elucidating evening to say the least and I agree with Dolly, “Free Tibet!” is now a greeting we are going to be using often.
Small get togethers of this kind are important: we realize what special people we have in our midst !
Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and yes! “Free Tibet !!”