When I first began talking about this class reunion, one of my blogger friends mentioned I should read author Harlan Coben's article about his 30-year reunion. I found it and recommend it to you.
I, of course, was attending a 50-year reunion. Even though the number still makes no sense to me (and most of my classmates agreed with that thought), and even though some of the group looked pretty darned young for folks closing in on 70 years old, a fact is a fact. We graduated in 1960.
After this much time passes, the playing field changes. Do we care who's smarter or who has more friends? Not so much. Who has lots of money and who's living on a budget? Since no one was bragging or whining, it apparently was of little interest.
And yet we talked and talked and talked. Every spare minute, different combinations of classmates gathered at tables in the hotel's breakfast room and talked. The lulls in the conversation were few and far between. It was informal and fun. It was warm. And from time to time it was touching.
What did we talk about? Some of the stupid things we did over the years. A lot about kids and grandkids. About our day to day activities. Our parents, both living and dead. Our health and the health of our spouses and other family members. Memories of our high school years (but mostly the dumb stuff and the mistakes we made).
Here are the things I noticed the most.
We were eager to discuss some of our life screw-ups. At times it felt like a competition of the most comic kind.
I felt I was in a group of old friends who met every week for coffee and conversation, even though many of us had not been in touch for years.
The spouses participated as though they had been our classmates too.
And finally, I realized that even though I knew and liked these men and women (I started to write "kids") during high school, I probably knew them better after this weekend than I did when we graduated or after the other two reunions I attended. And now I'm going to miss them more as well.
But most of us will now do a better job of staying in touch. And I'm definitely looking forward to that.