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July 2018
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This 'n That
by Anne Vargas
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Words daunting enough to strike terror in my heart!

Anne Vargas
Anne Vargas
High School Reunion

“Is there a better incubator of love-hate relationships than the high school reunion? If you are 1) still in touch with your class clique, 2) filthy rich, 3) married to a celebrity or 4) all three of these, you can't wait to get this party started. If, on the other hand, you were a loner, or still emerging from your teenage shell, a root canal looks more inviting.  Excerpt from an article by Mary-Ellen Banashek in AARP magazine that I identified with.

One would think that after sixty years the demons would be banished along with anxiety about going back but apparently not. I was assuredly never a part of those cliques in high school; the term “misfit” was far more apt. For me, the correlation between high school and college was akin to the caterpillar becoming a butterfly; a whole new wonderful world awaited and I didn’t look back. But an abundance of water has gone under the bridge since my wallflower days and who knows how many more opportunities there will be to see the people of the past, many of whom I would not have thought I would want to see again. Perhaps...

reunion wisdom

The notice about the reunion was sent out nearly a year ago. My initial reaction was, “absolutely not, I’m definitely not going”! That was followed by “Maybe I’ll think about it” along with “Would I still feel like the misfit?” progressing to “I wonder who will be there” before I finally sent in my deposit and made hotel reservations for a double room; I need my spouse with me as support. At this point I am somewhat nervous but also somewhat enthusiastic. We were a class of only 167 and have lost sixty-four of those which seems extraordinarily disproportionate to me, even given our age. Suddenly it really does seem important to reconnect.

My best friend in high school is a recent widow and will not be attending. I was the Maid of Honor in her wedding and I subsequently wore her wedding dress when my husband and I were married with five days’ notice during the Berlin Crisis fifty-seven years ago. How fortunate I was to have a friend like that and I’m sorry I won’t see her. But the girl I was closest to in grades one through eight will be there, along with several other classmates who went with me from the very small Catholic grade school to the enormous (to us) and dangerous (according to the nuns) public school across the street. The High School where I never quite fit in, the High School I am now going to revisit.

reunion question

There have been other reunions through the years and I’m sure the pattern of those has been like that of other school reunions, progressing from showing off at the tenth to sharing photos at the 20th to telling tales about spouses, fiancés or exes and health concerns after that.

fit into my earings

The reunion is going to take place in September. Oscar Wilde said: “The one charm about past is that it is the past.” But I think I prefer this quote: “Look not at the days gone by with a forlorn heart; they were simply the dots we can now connect with our present.” Dodinsky

Those old memories no longer haunt me and I’m ready to go. It doesn’t matter how I look; what does matter is that I suddenly really want to see the people who were part of that chapter of my life. Stay tuned; I will report back.