On the evening of Wednesday the 14th of November, the Connaught Club hosted its penultimate event of the year. The brethren of the club assembled at the Mumbai Square curry rooms, just off Liverpool Street, for an exploration and investigation into the first regular step in Freemasonry.

It is an unusual venue, to say the least, for a meeting of Masons, but to the surprise of many brethren there lies a fully functioning Lodge room almost directly above the restaurant. There, above the delectable aromas of the spices below, CC veteran W.Bro. Alexi Petrou treated the assembled brethren to an emotive talk and walkthrough of the first degree, accompanied with many exciting and interesting references, that may have been missed upon our own experiences.

Between Bro Alexis’, and W.Bro. Orestes Adamou’s seemingly endless historical and linguistic knowledge, we were guided through the ceremony, step by step, exploring the hidden meanings and genesis of the signs, symbols and tokens of the first degree. The talk evoked meaning and emotion for every assembled mason, ranging from the newly initiated to more mature members in double digits of masonry; and provided a meaningful platform for discussion. A highlight of the night was the ‘alcoholics anonymous’ seating style and reflection where every brother gave their interpretation of the first degree, and what it meant to them. It can be said that most, if not all the brothers assembled shared the same sentiments of wonder and mystery upon knocking on the door of the Lodge for the first time.

After a thorough and enjoyable talk, the brethren retired downstairs to the restaurant, where we were treated to a buffet of Mumbai Square’s finest curries (and beer!). The discussion continued through the satisfying feast and to the customary pub visit afterwards; the brethren obviously inspired by the fascinating review, or beer, or both!

All in all, a most illuminating night above the curry house, onwards to the Christmas Dinner!

Written by Bro. George Singleton