Tuen's Blog

Infrequent diary of a procrastinator

Melissa’s Valedictory

Written By: Tuen - Oct• 25•07

Last night we attended Melissa’s valedictory mass in her school’s chapel.  There were about 80 valedictorians compared to over 200 from St. Kevin’s the night before.  So understandably, the atmosphere was pretty different.  Last night’s event was more cosy, and since the chapel was much smaller than the cathedral, the proceedings were less grand and on a smaller scale.  There was less formality about the whole thing.  Nonetheless, it was still a very nice celebration and there certainly was still a sense of the sacred.  Even though it was just a chapel, but because of its architecture, it still felt more traditionally ‘Catholic’ than the usual parish church.

There wasn’t a grand dinner after the mass, but there was an informal reception in the hall, and drinks and food were circulated amongst the guests and girls by other school girls on duty.  I actually found the reception in the hall more enjoyable than the grand dinner at Sofitel.  Not food-wise, but in terms of the ability to move around and meet with other parents and Melissa’s friends.  At Sofitel, we were more or less confined to our dinner table, but at last night’s reception we had no limits, so to speak.  And indeed we made a few new friends and caught up with old friends last night.  It was also interesting to observe the girls’ relationships and behaviour compared to the boys’.  Yes there was also quite a bit of photo-taking at the boys’ valedictory, but the girls just did it differently.  There was more of it, and the way the girls grouped together and posed for photos was just different.  It’s hard to describe but I’m sure you know what I mean.  Surprisingly though, I didn’t notice any tears, which I thought would have been expected.

Finally, I must share this little incident:  One of Melissa’s year mates (Monika, I found out later) came up to me and told me I had a beautiful singing voice!  She had been sitting in front of me during the mass.  Wow, that really made my night.  It also got me thinking that this illustrated how self-confident the girls are, being able to come up to a complete stranger to deliver a compliment.  This is one of the features of the private school education system in Australia; the ability to nurture its students’ self-confidence.  I find it hard to imagine a similar action by a Singapore educated student.

All in, a very enjoyable evening.


Full photoset is here:

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