By Sr. Ann Schulte, SHCJ
“What shall we do with a drunken sailor…” These words were on some music being played at Holy Child College, Lagos, Nigeria on Saturday 14th November, 2015. Rather a strange song for the College! On going inside the grounds, one saw a very colourfully dressed group of girls, dancing something like some Irish steps. That is exactly what was happening!
The answer to the question was that the College had picked out 15 countries of the United Nations, namely: Germany, Brazil, France, Netherlands, Spain, China, Botswana, India, Ireland, Cuba, Switzerland, United Kingdom (Wales), America, Morocco and the Federation of saint Kitts and Nevis, and each class presented one of the countries, dressed beautifully, even for European Countries like France, wearing traditional dress from the regions. Then they made their presentation, starting with the country’s National Anthem, followed by information about the country, its geographical position, short history, the dress, food, special attractions and the meaning of the flag, which was held by every girl. The presentation ended with a dance from the country to the correct music.
The audience of parents, friends, SHCJ, and special guests, including Collins Owonchei, a well known Nollywood actor and film maker, were thrilled with the presentations. The judges had to make choices between the 15 countries! As the presentations were taking place everyone was served with a delicious lunch of their choice from the menu. At the end, the new First Year Students represented the Federal Republic of Nigeria and did a fantastic display, all dressed in the many different tribal traditional apparels, mixing up with each other. A tribe from Delta State did a dance which ended up with a human canoe, coming in and moving between the dancers! The final dance was a very lively Igbo dance and acrobatic display. Perhaps luckily, Nigerian being the, so called, “host nation”, was not in the competition!
While the judges were trying to make up their minds, we were all invited into the hall, where the different “nations” had put out some of their special food dishes on display, and kindly, even had small plates and cups for the visitors to “taste” the different meals laid out on the tables!
The afternoon ended with the results, which were prefaced by some words saying everyone had done very well and it was difficult to make a choice!. However the judges had done what they were asked to do, so lst was USA, 2nd a tie between France and The Netherlands, and 3rd the Kingdom of Morocco. As the students were dancing and rejoicing their parents and visitors left enriched by all they had seen and heard.