The 2nd of December saw 44 University of Melbourne alumni gather at Infuzi Restaurant, Biopolis for the Singaporean alumni association’s Christmas party. As members (and the occasional ring-in from other “almost-as-distinguished” institutions of higher learning) mingled, old friendships were renewed and new ones forged.
The Infuzi kitchens kept hungry alumni fed with a seemingly endless procession of food. Highlights included the roast beef, smoked salmon rolls, cheese and grape skewers and – nearly everyone’s favourite – the chocolate mud cake. This was washed down with a fantastic selection of wines organized by our resident sommelier, Soohoo, of Hermitage Wines. This Australian did notice a tendency towards Kiwi and French vintages in the selection, but the quality was such that any patriotic objections were easily washed down…err…away!
Most attendees seemed very happy to chat and enjoy the hospitality, which meant that the organized games for the evening proved hard to kick-start. Nonetheless after much cajoling from committee members, groups were formed for the Pictionary challenge. Now I am an Arts graduate, so of course I am constitutionally incapable of drawing. It was noticeable, however, that those alumni blessed with Architecture, Design and Fine Arts degrees did make themselves scarce very quickly when the marker pens were brought out. Consequently, there were some very “creative” interpretations of the chosen words. Heads were scratched, brains wracked and ideas tossed around until finally one group was declared the winner and claimed their prize.
Speaking of prizes brings us to the door prize draw. Now I am loath to accuse certain legally qualified members of the organizing committee of corruption, but certain irregularities in the door prize procedure must be pointed out. First there was the Vice President who won the major furniture prize. There were the individuals who managed to pick their own number from the hat. And then there were the boxes of chocolates. Now I absolutely take the Forrest Gump point that “life is like a box of chocolates”. But the question is “when is a box of chocolates NOT like a box of chocolates?” Answer: When Richard Tan tells you it is a box of chocolates. The man is clearly untrustworthy. Those of us – your present correspondent included – who won some of “Richard’s chocolates” were somewhat surprised to find a handsome desk accessory in our package instead. All very dubious indeed! Where are the chocolates, I ask you? There is cocoa on Richard's hands, I am sure of it...
Members also exchanged Christmas presents, so by the end of the evening most people were seen heading home laden down with door prizes and gifts. As the icing on the cake, all attendees received a discount voucher for sleepwear and a voucher for a wine tasting evening at Hermitage Wines – an event many are already penciling into their diaries.
The serious party-goers then repaired to the Velvet Underground at Zouk where intellectual conversation and polite discourse in the best traditions of the University of Melbourne continued into the small hours of the morning.
A good time was had by all.
By: SIMON OBENDORF
Christmas Party Goer & Alumni Member