By: Chanuka Wijayakoon
The annual inter-tribe sports fiesta, called Endurance 2017, saw employees taking part in track and field events. It kicked off with a welcome dance and the traditional hoisting of flags, lighting the Olympic lamp and a speech by the Managing Director, Mr. Shanil Fernando. Before the event, Einstein was leading the tribal scoreboard of the events this year. They were keen to keep their lead, while the rest of us – Galileo, Maxwell and Newton tribes – were determined to dethrone them and claim victory for ourselves.
To set the moral high, each tribe presented a Haka which left our throats bloody and hearts pounding. This set the competitive mood for the upcoming events, and you could feel the edge of competition in the air. Long jump, shot put, races each raised our heartbeat as our tribe’s participants jumped, threw and raced around the track at Sugathadasa with their own vigour, strengthened by our tribal cheers. My fellow interns took part in racing events in which they won medals and made memories to remember for the rest of their lives.
The races had everyone’s eyes glued to the track while the sprinters moved faster than the frame rates of our cameras sometimes. There was one colleague who ran with such massive leads that after a while, people were more interested in who came second because the fact that the former would win was a given. But even that promise was shattered by the end of the day, showing the competitiveness of the athletes. Injuries also stood witness to their determination to win. No matter who won or lost, everyone was greeted with cheery smiles as they showcased their athletic prowess.
And then there were the tug of war rounds. While one may expect the side with more heavy-weights to win the game, this wasn’t entirely true as some teams miraculously defied all expectations. Dodgeball was another event where the competitors jumped around for their dear lives while the rest of us roared in laughter. One intern was especially skilled in this game, as he won one round single-handedly as the last man standing.
It wasn’t just a great day for the company’s employees, their kids had fun as well. The kids’ race brought more smiles to everyone’s faces as they ran their 25 meters. The last event of the day was Ten Earns Spinning, where each tribe would line up, run to a pole at a distance and spin around it 10 times before trying to run back to their original position. People took all sorts of wrong turns after spinning as they tried to maintain their balance. Music, games and the fun came to a halt as the day ended with Maxwell being the overall champions of the sports fiesta.