Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Annual Get Together 2008 - Abbottabad (Day-1)

Abbottabad once again hared the footsteps of its very old residents, who in 1975 thumped the roads of Kakul and surrounding areas with lots of hufs and mufs. This time , however, it was a pleasant re-union with grown up kids and their kids, fathers and grand fathers and mothers and grand mothers. The get together was arranged by Brigadier Ghazanfar, the Commandant Piffers' Centre, with a whole hearted support from all ranks of the Centre. 

In fact the grandeur of the event really surprised everyone and the get together became perhaps the best of all the annuals before and may be thereafter.

It may be mentioned here that it was Ghazanfar, while serving in GHQ in 1991, who arranged the first course get-together as a mega event and since then it has become an annual feature. And the programme issued by him amply highlights his contribution towards the course and turning into a memorable occasion. And most certainly, this time he lived much above the expectations since the get together spread over two was so well organized that it will be remembered and cherished by all of us for all our lives.

Well for those who missed this grand show - which reminds me of the film "The Greatest Show on the Earth", I saw in my childhood, here is an eyewitness' account of those two unforgettable days that myself, my family and dozens of our course mates and their families enjoyed while in Abbottabad on 12-13 April 2008, just four days short of 31st passing out day anniversary of 55th PMA Long Course - indeed one of the best courses that ever passed out from PMA. Since there were so many activities arranged on each day, it would be unjustified on my part to sum up everything in just one page. And certainly it will not be able to compliment the efforts of Ghazanfar and his entire staff and those great recruits who made us the happiest of all human beings while celebrating our reunion. Therefore I have subdivided the activities in two segments - so sit back and read on to participate in what we all saw on 12-13th April 2008.

After getting together at the Piffers' Mess and served with a well laid out dinner, the course was taken to the Piffers' Centre sports ground where to the surprise of many a grand tattoo show was organized. The show reminded me of the tattoo show I had seen in my childhood at a Horse and a Cattle SHow Lahore Fortress Stadium back in 1964. And for many, even including some course mates, their families and children, this was something they were watching for the first time - and itr was really worth watching:    


After this grand tattoo show ended with a huge applause from us, we were taken back to yet another venue - The Piffers' Centre auditorium for a magnificent band display and music evening.

We were welcomed by the Piffers Centre and apprised of the programme that was to unfold 

The brass band drum beats compelled some of us to jump into the dancing arena and dance on the beating tunes for the love of all.


 After the band display, a beautiful and melodious voice from Abbottabad joined us on the stage and sang for hours amid clapping and applause from all of us.


The night ended with a dance joined by almost everyone on the last song 'bibi shirinay' - there was to be a long day ahead the next day specially for the golfers as they were to get earlier than the rest to play a 9-hole match. They were to be joined by the laziers later for the brunch.