School Reunions - Reminiscing and Reflecting
School reunions often are met with polar opposite reactions. You get a bulk of people who would rather be fed through a sausage machine than attend a school reunion. After all, years on, we are very different people from the dorky, geeky, smiling heads that shone out of the year book; in all their innocence.
On the other hand you have the group of people who are super pumped to get back together, reminisce on the good ole days, drink cheap booze and dance to Prince and Boyz II Men. Party like it's 1996 (in my case last night) when we had a whole life ahead of us.
There is a small group in the middle who couldn't be assed to do anything but usually one special person or a group go back to the old tried and trusted method of peer pressure, and instead of getting someone to smoke behind the toilets or join the choir, they are dragged to a school reunion.
Nothing beats the beauty of peer pressure especially when it invokes the emotions of a teenager struggling to understand themselves and their place in society.
Either way you front up and meet people that you haven't met in decades (in my case) and are astonished by the change and lack of change. In the best possible way.
People have gained weight, gained beards, gained wealth, gained tattoos, gained scars, gained kids, gained careers. At the same time these folks have lost partners, lost hair, lost innocence, lost fears, lost restraint, lost wealth and so on.
Either way time has had its toll whilst adding wisdom and weariness.
And the stories are telling. Lives have passed on prematurely. Through misfortune, misdeed and mismanagement. Lives has been wasted thanks to the vices of this earth and the lack of moderation. Lives have been enhanced as love has been found and families have been built. The world has changed as lives have been given in the search for intelligence, social enhancement and the help for those greatest in need.
I met kids who have become adults. From the floating along to the firing. Doctors. Business People. Psychologists. Administrators. Professionals. Dreamers. Achievers. Mothers. Fathers.
Standing around catching up on time, reminding ourselves of the good, bad and ugly days of school and surviving such an awkward, insecure times. The days when you bore, possibly the hardest journey in life; the transformation from a child to an adult. The days when the opposite sex (or same sex) was discovered. And strange things happened to the body, the heart, the mind and the soul.
The days when your inadequacies and your strengths were exposed in the worst possible ways. When you did too much or did too little. The days when every emotion burnt brightly and engulfed you. Love. Anger. Jealously. Sorrow. Hope. Excitement. Anxiety. Depression.
20 years on, balance has come along. But there will be always a small part of us defined by those school-tie wearing days. The mystical thought of a romance. The anger of violence. The bliss of brotherhood. The wonder of womanhood. The triumph in sport.
These are the stars and the scars that are tattooed on our soul.
7300 days have passed plus change. 7300 opportunities to go forward. 7300 moments to make the world a better place. From the innocent faces staring out at an unknown future to the faces on a journey forged in sorrow and success.
There is one last reflection. One last thought. What will we do with the next 7300? What possible triumph of spirit can be achieved between last night and 7/2036? What jobs will be created on the back of our endeavors? How many lives will be improved by our efforts? How many countries will we see? How many children will be raised to be the citizens of the future? What art can we create to inspire humanity and express the mystical? How many more laughter lines will come upon our visage as we follow our bliss?
Whether you look at the numbers up or down up or down they are still the same. Whether you are up or down; your class mates are still the same. United in time and place.
Onwards APHS96, Onwards.