On Friday I packed my bags and left my family ... for the weekend. It was my 25th high school reunion. The photo above was taken at the Annual Father Daughter Dance in about 1982. I am the girl in the middle, my Dad is the moustache to my right.
I stayed with my oldest - make that longest-standing - friend who you met here. The plan was to get a group of us together Friday night for a little pre-reunion party. I had sent out an email to everyone on my contact list and asked them to forward it on to everyone they had and so on and so on .... All very inclusive and so not cliquey all girl's schoolish. Or so I thought. Responses came back regretfully, almost everyone had other plans. Some family related but some plans with others who were in from out of town for the reunion. Plans that did not include everyone but I was fine with that.
I went ahead and headed down to the big city where I can't believe I had not been in months. I even tried to organize a little blogger get together but flu season has already hit some of our numbers hard and if you have a chance head over to Beth at Books Etc. and see if she's feeling better. (Just checked, she is and she's been hanging out with a real hunk.) So the weekend didn't get off to a roaring start but I met a couple of friends for dinner and we quickly got caught up and consumed two bottles of Pinot Grigio. Then I had a great idea, I'd be damned if I was going home at 9:30 on my big weekend away so why not crash the party the cool kids were having?
It wasn't too bad, we arrived as they were sitting down to dessert and all (most?) seemed genuinely happy to see us. The hostess even commented on my cunning plan to bring the guest of honour and my dinner date together after all these years. Right, that was the plan. Wait a minute, the plan was to crash a party we weren't invited to. Why was I so clever? It seems that in my high school Diet Coke-addled brain I had forgotten that the two afore-mentioned women had had a huge falling out 25 years ago and hadn't spoken since. Hence the lack of invitation for one of them to the party. Me, I just wasn't invited.
So, it seems I had done my good deed for the weekend without even knowing it. There were hugs and congratulations all around, more wine was drunk and I made my way back to my hostess' house quite satisfied with myself.
The morning I wasn't so much. But it was up and at 'em in time to get to the school for the traditional Old Girls vs. students basketball and field hockey games. I took photos, none of which were very good. Chatted with a few teachers, horrified the students with stories of life before cellphones and Wikipedia and then hightailed it out to go shopping, had enough time for a nap before heading back for the cocktail party. There every reunion year from 60 to 5 was represented by chattering, squealing and laughing women who all shared a common experience of wearing a tunic, tie and some, even bloomers (that would include yours truly, they switched to boxers soon after I graduated but we did wear the damn things under our kilts and tunics for modesty's sake, if you can believe it) We posed for class photos and then headed off to our dinner at a classmate's house.
There were over 40 of us out of about 70 including some who had left before graduation. We came from as far away as the UK, San Francisco, Oregon, Connecticut, Quebec, B.C. and Ohio. We are now doctors, lawyers, entrepreneurs, Pilates and Yoga instructors, mothers, divorcees and widows. And we all look even better 25 years later. We have all come into our own in everyway. We turned 40 a few years back and we all seem to be embracing it. Our hair is blonder, longer, shorter, darker and greyer but our eyes are bright and surrounded by laugh lines.
And we added to them that night. We shared photos of our families and homes. We swapped email addresses and phone numbers and business cards. We ate and drank and toasted two of our classmates who are no longer with us and promised to remember them as they would have wanted us to to. We were the class of 1984, George Orwell predicted Big Brother and doom. We remember Boy George, Flash Dance and leggings. Fortunately only the leggings have survived.