August the 4th went down as a watershed celebration of sorts as Singapore geared up to celebrate 47 years of independence in its final rehearsal leading up to National Day, while Orgo Bar & Restaurant, the host-venue of our Fireworks event, celebrated its 3rd anniversary with a free flow of drinks and tapas at the Esplanade Rooftop Terrace.
And for the first time, I’d have to say, “It felt nice being caught in the middle” of two celebrations, soaking up the food, fun, and fellowship of alumni (including the affable honorary life member, Mr Daniel Teo Tong How) and guests including the family of Australian High Commissioner to Malaysia, Mr Miles Kupa.
Many of us had never seen the parade up close. But we had
the chance this time and we took it! The view from the Orgo at Esplanade’s
Rooftop terrace, was spectacular. It presented a clear visual and auditory
experience of the parade unraveling on land, water and sky!
|L-R: Master Alexander Kupa, Mr Melvin Gwee, Ms Zulaikha Chudori, Mr Daniel Teo, Mr Miles Kupa, Ms Rachel Teo, Mr Lee Ee Win|
On one side of the rooftop terrace, we could see that the Float@Marina Bay was ablaze with colour and sound—thanks to some animated presenters and performers! While on the end overlooking the Marina Bay Reservoir, we witnessed the high-speed Police Coast Guard and Naval Diving Unit’s sea charge, with PK Class interceptors and rigid hull inflatable boats tearing through the water, creating massive wakes in the reservoir and personnel onboard firing blanks and pyrotechnics, showcasing Singapore’s maritime defence capabilities.
It was quite a treat to see the Army’s five ceremonial guns on the water, pounding away at 60-second intervals, piercing the air with a cracking sound, each and every time they went off. And up in the sky, the Royal Singapore Air Force made their presence felt with the state flag fly-past and a thundering aerial display involving nine fighter jets that screamed just over our heads!
Orgo Bar & Restaurant also impressed with its offering of delights. A special coffee-flavoured cocktail was served alongside other drinks including juices, soft drinks, wines and beer. And there was quite a variety of delectable food—bazella, prawn kebabs, braised lamb shanks, tandoor chicken wraps, and pita & naan breads complete with dips.
We had an exclusive platter to pander to the tastes of veggie-lovers. The food must have been good because quite a few non-veg lovers were helping themselves to that platter! Orgo had also organized belly dancing on the night, although most of us were too imbibed by the great company we were in, to notice.
Razzle Dazzle of Fireworks
The brilliant night-out was capped with a dramatic, vibrant display of pyrotechnics that lit the dome of night sky! Our Fireworks Event ‘packed heat’ for a good 15-minutes and when that died down, the air remained abuzz with everyone commenting on what they’d just seen!
Lest I forget, our alumni president, Melvin Gwee thanked everyone present and urged them to consider participating in our up and coming events, including a Charity Event and the 2 December Standard Chartered Marathon!
Closer to date, are affiliate events that UMAAS will be participating in, including the Australian Alumni Singapore’s 57th Anniversary Dinner (to be graced by the Australian High Commissioner to Singapore, Mr. Doug Chester) and the Launch of the Victorian Connection (to be hosted by the Victorian Commissioner to South East Asia, Mr. Tim Dillon).
Hopefully, our events, which can seem a labour of love to organise and see through, will help us better ‘love Singapore, our Home’, our alma mater—the University of Melbourne, UMAAS and each other.
Many thanks to fellow committee members—Melvin (president), Daniel, Ee Win, Andrew and Kelvin, who assisted in making the 4th August Fireworks event, a success.
That’s it from me! Till next time, take care!