Yet, that's this weekend. Our last gathering was 1996, when our high school held an all-year reunion to celebrate its 75th birthday. My dad even went to high school in this building, graduating about 1939.
This reunion will be a much smaller group than that 1996 event, only 28 or so counting the half dozen spouses who are probably being dragged to the event against their will.
The planners (including me) have spent almost two years working on this, mostly just trying to find people. My other task was preparing the name tags, which have the senior yearbook photos on them. They turned out pretty well, considering I didn't know what I was doing. A little trial and error and a couple of frustrating glitches later, and I have a fairly decent set of tags.
We're keeping it pretty simple. Whoever is available this evening and wants to head out for pizza and beer will do that. Tomorrow noon we get a conducted tour of the high school and eat a box lunch there. And tomorrow evening we gather for dinner at a nice steakhouse where we'll have a private room. That's pretty much it. No big speeches, no formal program, just the chance to get reacquainted and mark the occasion.
I dropped by the building on a school day in 2009. There were some noticeable changes. For one thing, there's a security lock on the outside doors. I had to be buzzed inside by someone in the office.
In addition, all locker doors stood open at all times. No locks, no secrets.
This photo is aimed down the first floor hall. That hallway seemed a lot longer when I was fourteen and trying to find my way to classrooms for the first time.
The other big change (from an old student's point of view) was in the student lounge. First of all, the room had shrunk drastically. (As a matter of fact, the whole school seemed smaller.)
Most shocking, however, was the wall decoration. During my high school years, a talented artist in my class painted a mural that covered at least this end wall and maybe extended around the side walls. All that was painted over, and now the walls are covered with hand prints.
I'll admit it's colorful, even striking, but I missed the old mural. It was so....us.
The hand prints go all around the room. I can't wait for my old classmates to see that lounge and get their reactions.
Did I really expect that old mural to be there after all these years? No, I guess not. But I feel sad I don't I have a photo of the way it looked then.
The building has changed, at least inside.
The people will have done most of their changing on the outside. This should be very interesting.