Being a novice astronomer and a new comer to the AstroClub, the upcoming competition seemed a daunting experience. Gathering team mates was also somewhat difficult. The TTAS astronomy club never really had a strong rooting in Fatima College but after a few days of persuasion, I gathered my team. The quiz itself seemed straightforward. We were provided with all the questions in print, that would be presented, as well as material which contained all the answers. Most of the work was covered in previous club meetings – the first Saturday of every month at the Frank Stockdale Building, UWI, St. Augustine. There, students would be lectured on astronomy by the club founder, Mr. Barrow, and by other experienced members.
The day of the AstroQuiz had a few unexpected twists. The most prominent being the fact that two of my team mates could no longer attend the competition for legitimate reasons. I grew somewhat anxious as I arrived at the university campus. I called my last remaining team member, Levi Mahadeo, hoping for the best and thankfully he was already on his way. Upon arrival I crossed check the answers I had researched with his and made adjustments, eventually creating a master answer sheet.
We sat at the very front of the Chemistry Lecture Room where the competition was housed, asking various seasoned members for advice on answers that we were uncertain of. The room continued to fill with spectators as time progressed. I never envisioned the club to be this popular to draw such a crowd. After being informed of the mechanics and rules of the game the first question was projected onto the board. To my surprise we were actually able to stay in the top 5 for the first few rounds The game grew exciting as we rattled off correct answers one after the other. We grew eager, hoping we’d place in the top 3. Sadly this was short lived. As we entered the later phase of the game the questions grew much trickier and knowledge specific. One or two wrong answers soon multiplied and eventually we fell behind.
Although we weren’t victorious, we were commended on our relentless efforts and for performing so well even though our team was comprised of only 2 members. This was in contrast with all the other teams which had 5 or 6 participants to provide information and brainstorm answers. Nevertheless it was a pleasure to represent Fatima College at this event and hopefully this motivates other students in forms below mines to participate next year and hopefully win the competition for the college