|The Abu Alumni Oriole
St. Mary's High School, Mount Abu
A L U M N I A F F A I R S
14 June 1998
For a number of years, in fact from time immemorial, there has been talk of a swimming pool in Abu. The Brothers have started to collect funds for it on at least two occasions in the past, but the project has never materialized. We are now committed to building a pool and including swimming in the curriculum. Construction has begun. The only thing that could hold up the project is the usual governmental red tape, but I believe we can get around it.
Many might question the need for a pool. After all, Shallow Bay, School Lake and the Dam were good enough for us, and I still believe were more fun than a pool will ever be. But ...
The loss of two of our boys a few years ago has put things in a different perspective. We have to be sensitive to the sentiments of their parents and others. If we took the boys back to swimming in the dam, it would look as if those two deaths have meant nothing to us. Hence the status at present is that the boys do not get any swims at all. As much as I wish that it could be different, it needs to stay that way until we can make other arrangements.
I am sure that all of you realize the necessity of learning to swim, not only from the point of view of exercise and relaxation, but more so as an essential skill for the safety of life itself. So many of the boys today do not know how to swim, and probably will never learn unless we take this initiative. Also the number of day scholars has increased greatly, they are greater in number then the boarders, and for them there is absolutely no chance of ever learning to swim. For all these reasons a pool is not a luxury but rather a necessity in a school like ours.
A number of us have very fond memories of our time in SMS, even of some of the harsh stuff that we lived through (I speak in the first person as an ex-student myself, Class of 1979). But these were our school days, and we took the good with the bad. One thing's certain: SMS did provide a very different atmosphere than most other schools. Many of you come up and ask if there's anything you can do to better the school. Well there is ... if you feel so inclined. Please help us out with the swimming pool fund. It really doesn't matter how much you send, every bit will be very gratefully accepted! Receipts will be sent to all concerned. We are registered with the Government of India, and we will incur no taxes on your contributions.
If you require any clarifications, please write directly to me in Abu, or e-mail your queries to Val who will forward them to me through my cousin in Bombay. I personally would like the funds to be sent directly up to our account by a Demand Draft in Rupees, or through any one planning to visit India. Please do include a little note with your address and other details.
Think about it, the end of Shallow Bay and the Dam, no more Kelly's canoe and rafts etc. but also the continuation of swimming.
Looking forward to hearing from you, and it needn't be in this connection only.
God bless you all!
[Br Noel D'Sa, Principal]