It was a normal lecture day and a few months had passed by since the day I joined gavel. I saw a message from Loshini akki saying that I have been chosen for the OC of the Christmas-themed gavel meeting. I had no idea what is coming along the way. So I texted a few of my friends asking whether they have gotten a message like that. To my surprise, there were only Ranulie and Malith in the OC from the people that I knew back then. So, being the happiest person ever said “yes akki”
Then we started to get our work done. Gavel had come a long way, almost to a huge milestone of the journey, the 450th educational meeting. I was on cloud nine realizing that I’m going to be a part of this special moment. There were eight OC members including myself, Ranulie, Malith, Vishmi, Keshala, Rithvick, Rovindu and Amjad with the sweetest leadership of our Nirantha akki.
As time goes by there was a lot to be done. Entertainment, food and decorations are namely a few of them. So, we were assigned different tasks but there were no limits to our work. We were a team, it was amazing how the OC members helped each other not only the OC but also my incredible fellow gaveliers. I can’t forget their support as it was everything. I don’t think we could have done this without their help.
If I mentioned how those few weeks were for us, it was challenging and so much fun at the same time. I saw how Amajd, Rovindu and Malith came up with fabulous entertainment ideas and songs that we never sang. Rithvick, Keshala and Vishmi were planning the event and they were in charge of coordinating the 450th educational meeting. Ranulie and I spent so many days in the evening on that bench next to eat right canteen making so many decorations with the help of Malith who came all the way there to help us.
Finally, the day had arrived. It was the 15th of December to be exact. We were so excited like the people who had never decorated a Christmas tree. I desperately wanted to do that, but sadly I missed it though. But the hall looked spectacular after all the decorations plus the enthusiastic bubbly
faces of all the gaveliers and past gaveliers who were so kind enough to spare their valuable time after such short notice. Everything was red and green all over as it was our dress code for the day and it added glamour and the traditional Christmas- vibe to that beautiful moment.
We started our Christmas-themed 450th gavel educational meeting with the inspiring words of the toastmaster for the day, gavelier Supun about self-love. We had a special guest all the way from the north pole to give us all candy, not to mention he was also the round-robin master for the day and he never forgot to go around the room and ask everyone “if you were to give a gift to anyone in this room who would it be?”. That was a fun session in which everyone had different answers as some of them were so unexpected and it showed us the bond among us gaveliers. The so-called special Santa was played by our own gavelier Yasiru. The table topic session was mind-blowing and special with 8 table topics including three revealed topics and five hidden ones. The meeting surpassed our expectations and the table topic speeches delivered by our gaveliers were so mind-blowing and inspiring which took us to another level of thinking. Especially things we didn’t know about others and the milestones they have reached in their life, the journey they had with gavel which was so moving. The table topic master’s role was played by myself; gavelier Gihan. Gavelier Vishmi was the general evaluator, gavelier Nisali played the grammarian role, gavelier Pawanya had the role of the timer and gavelier Venuri was the ah counter for the day. All the role players did their job perfectly and made the 450th gavel educational meeting an unforgettable chapter of the gavel diary.
While we are speaking about the whole day how could I miss out on the fun games? Amjad and Rovindu had many games ideas but the time was not on our side so we had a nice round of Christmas-themed charades everyone in the hall was divided into two groups all the Poddas, Lokkas and our past gaveliers were playing together to bring triumph to their team. But it was more than winning, it was beautiful how all of those people got together and had fun like they have known each other for years. In my opinion, the most important thing about this event was bringing generations of gavel together under the same roof. Everyone
who was there knows how loud we were with our “sweet little chit chats” we have a lot to talk about, that’s what makes us gaveliers I think.
This was not only Christmas, it was a celebration of a milestone in the journey we had with the gavel. To celebrate this event we brought a huge cake. Since Ranulie and I took care of the cake, I guess I should say a little bit more about this. Our toastmaster and the OC Poddas could not wait to eat the cake. They went ahead and cut the cake even before Loshini akki finished her speech. It was a beautiful white cake with three candles lit on it showing “450”. We did not forget to give everyone a piece to enjoy while the power cut hit us as usual. As they say, time flies when you are having fun. It was getting dark out there and we were having some trouble keeping all these enthusiastic double-active gaveliers in the hall during the power cut. But everyone was a little sad as they couldn’t take photos with their friends, but did it stop us from doing that? No! We all took crazy, beautiful selfies with the help of flashlights which holds thousands of memories.
At the end of the meeting, just how much we had bonded over this special occasion, we found amazing friends that we never thought we will find, and I think it’s the gavel norm that we all wanted to end the day with a warm hug with each and everyone saying thank you for their huge support in making the event a success. Before I end my story, I can’t leave without mentioning our leader, Nirantha akki who was there helping us every step of the way and guiding us through all the difficulties, and making us push through everything. She finished the meeting by saying that “all of you have my heart” and she meant it. Loshini akki was always behind us. She had our back all the time and I must say this before the ending. Thank you so much to both of you for helping us in making this a reality.
If I left one note saying how it felt for me, this is something I always say about gavel not only in this particular event but even in normal educational meetings “gavel is all about the people”, to be honest, that is the place where I have met so many amazing individuals who later came to be my closest friends. During this whole process, I learned a lot that I
had no idea how to do, I got to learn and practice a lot of new things.
If you are reading this and you’ve come this far remember this, never say no to an opportunity that comes on your way. If I had said no to Loshini akki’s message then, today I would be regretting all the things that would have never happened.