I was lucky enough to attend high school in the era just before consolidation made Indiana schools too big and changed basketball for the worst in 1967. For a very long time I didn’t think too much about my high school years. There were four of them, they spanned the years 1958-62 and that was about that. In some ways my memories weren’t always fond ones. I kept up with three girlfriends from that time, and stayed in touch with a male friend whose high school time had not been pleasant. (He never returned to the reunions and told me he really never wanted to. He said he might come to the 50th, but he died in 2010, so that took care of that.) I always remembered my teachers from high school though, kept in touch with one especially, and they remain special people in my life.
As I grew older, and also grew up, I remembered fondly where I had been and the places and events that had made me the person I was/am. I returned to my 20th year reunion, and remember wondering who those men with the slight paunches were, standing outside the gymnasium door, no doubt settling the affairs of the world. They were, of course, the guys I graduated with, and inside were many of the girls I had graduated with also. It was fun to see them, and to remember the good times with them. But I never went back to a reunion until 2002, when we were to honor one of our teachers, Mrs. Virginia Reedy, the one I had kept in touch with. At that reunion I began to see that we were all more affectionate to each other and everyone greeted me as if I was his/her long lost relative. I had fun at that reunion, and was glad I went. I returned in 2007 for the 45th, this time taking a lot of pictures and making many new memories.
Last night was our 50th year reunion, a stellar occasion for all who attended. There were several people there I hadn’t seen since high school, and several I hadn’t seen for a while. Some came from long distances and other just drove down the road a little ways. But there they were, the “kids” I had attended high school with; we remain “kids” in each others eyes you see. There were two old beaus, happily married as am I, and the childish jealousies and petty upsets of high school girls were forgotten in the hugs and the happiness of the moment. We talked and laughed and remembered those who were no longer with us, especially the one who had been buried just that afternoon not far from where we were then standing. We sang the fight song when the words and music came up on the video screen, and put in the chant afterward, and laughed and called out jokes as we went around the room sharing information about our present lives and families. It was, as we used to say in the sixties, a “love fest”, for when we were children we spoke and did childish things, but when we grew up we put those childish things away, and became husbands, wives, mothers,and fathers. Some of us served our country, some of us went to work in the factories of nearby Anderson and Muncie, while others lives took more divergent paths. But last night we were all Cossacks again and it felt darned good!