I just attended a high school reunion. It was magical and exhausting. I’ve been showing up for reunions over the years; I think when something is a challenge, I persist at it all the more. The reunion committee and I have been getting better at them. For myself, the first went by like a whirlwind and felt like it was over before I’d figured out how to be there. I think others learned the same thing because this year we had four gatherings over the weekend: Friday meet n greet, Saturday morning tour of the campus and evening event, Sunday morning coffee and goodies in a park.
There came an era when reunions looked like a room full of strangers. It could be any group of people. I, along with others, came to accept that it will be that way. This time, I engaged in looking closely to find familiar glimmers in faces I used to know as teens: a quirk in the smile, a glint in the eye, an essence of the personality coming through.
It was a beautiful venue this year, out of doors, with lots of tiki lamps, a campfire, twinkly lights, lofty trees. I guess people have lots of reasons for attending reunions. They might have had a crush on someone and hope to see them there. What I came away with this year was the feeling of warmth and good intention. People wanted to connect. They were affirming our long acquaintanceships, which grow more precious.