It started out wonderfully. Friday afternoon our guests started filtering in. Some of them would be staying with us for a couple of nights, others at motels. When our appetites reached a critical mass, nine of us headed to a restaurant for a nice meal, then back to 1410 for drinks and talk far into the night - some old tales, but more about how we were spending our free years, and how our children and grandchildren are coping with life. A couple of friends are lawyers and they continue to work, taking only cases that strike their fancy. Another is a college English professor. Fate has left him as the single parent of a 14 year old son, and he has to keep grinding away beneath the wheel, teaching Lit 101 to his grave, so his child can go to school too. The rest of us are just general layabouts, obsolete designers, teachers and computer nerds, reduced to living off the fat of the land.
After breakfast on Saturday we split into smaller groups and continued drinking strong coffee, running a few errands, and simply talking to each other.
Saturday evening was the actual formal reunion. I found it agonizing. What did I learn? Most 68 year-old people are not old and wise, they are just old. Physically, health-wise, I have been very lucky and compared to most, my wife is damned hot. I realized that high school was not the high point of my life like it apparently was for some others. For me high school was unpleasant, something that had to be endured so I could move on with my life. I found I didn't care about stories of John Bailey's high school parties, Bill Emstad's Northside friends, clever tricks played on teachers, or climbing water towers in the middle of the night. I found that the cliques still existed and the young people who were asses in high school, still were. Only older. Shortly after the meal and program I went home and listened to music until our guests returned with my wife .........who is obviously far more sociable than I am.
This morning, Sunday, one last breakfast together and our guests all hit the road for the four corners of the country. I love them all, but it is a relief to be alone again.
Reunions? I will welcome the pilgrims, I will open my home to the travelers, but I don't think I'm going to go to another reunion myself.