Thursday, September 28, 2023

My Long and Winding Road

This week is one of those weeks where the past is coming to life again, and so many memories and good times are awakened.
I have mentioned my childhood at home was good, but I wasn't all that popular in school (especially high school).  I didn't conform to the mold that made one popular.  Not a cheerleader or jock - played the violin all through school, no name brand clothes.  I did have a lot of clothes - but I made them!!!  
I had a few good friends and that was it.  But that was fine to me.  I still don't conform a lot and still have those same few friends from back then - although I have added more over the years that were not from school!!!

I mentioned going to lunch yesterday.  That was with gals from high school who also happened to be grade school chums as well.  It was all to welcome 'home' an old friend from Colorado that we hadn't seen in years and years.  It was a great time and lots of laughing and chatter.  
I got to visit with another gal I hadn't seen since graduation!  There is a story here!!!!! (below)
My word I looked up and realized they had placed other people in our little room - and I felt so sorry for them.  No quiet relaxing lunch for them!!!!
This weekend is the 50 year high school reunion.  How in the world did that happen?????  Seems like yesterday we were just kiddos running amuck in a world of carefree fun.

I belong to a group on FB for our graduating class and another for all alum - and there have been so many posts this week with pictures, memories, a memoriam and activities.  A lot of people are coming back from all over the country for this one - and it will be the biggest one we have ever had.
I graduated with close to a 1,000 other kids, so there is no way we all knew each other.  Each reunion is meeting new people!  That is just crazy.

I got to thinking yesterday after I came home - so much has happened over all the years.
There were marriages, divorces, deaths, children, grandchildren.  There are hearing aids, eye surgeries, white hair, balding heads, canes and walkers!  Many, many are no longer on this earth with us.  We have lost over 10%.
And good golly - we are all approaching that 70 mark in the near future!!!!!!!!!!!!!


The story I mentioned above:  This gal and I were decent friends back then.  She had a cousin away at IN State University and I had a boyfriend there.  We decided one weekend to go make a visit.  We rode the bus from Indy to Terre Haute (about 75 mi. or so) - there and back (at night).  We stayed with her cousin overnight while there.  Our parents allowed that!!!!!!!  This was around '72 - in my junior year.  I cannot imagine allowing a young woman to do that today or even a gal wanting to.  Times were sure different back than, and never once were we worried, running all over campus and having a ball, talking to strangers and not having a care in the world.  
Side note:  That weekend my crazy boyfriend decided to come and surprise me!!!!!!!  It was not his scheduled weekend to come home.  We both got a huge surprise!!!!!!  LOL

It all seems like a lifetime ago.  I guess it was.
It sure has been a long and winding road from childhood to now.  Many ups and downs, joys and sorrows, and life just happening.
What a week of looking back.  I kind of am looking forward to Saturday evening and seeing many old chums, strangers and maybe making some new chums.  I guess we are never too old for that.
It should be an experience - 50 years!
Anyone else done this yet?

I hope you all have a great weekend, having a wonderful time with family and/or friends.
Here's looking to the future!!!!!
 

54 comments:

  1. I had the exact same thought a few weeks ago. Even though time seems to fly by, my childhood and even my 20's and 30's seem like a lifetime ago.
    I have not attended a high school reunion but next year will be my 40th and I may attend that. We all scattered all over the country after high school but I have stayed in contact with 5 or 6 that I went all through school with. I can't wait to hear all about Saturdays reunion.
    Have a wonderful time and that is a great memory of the road trip.

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    1. Lori, from friends that have gone to all of theirs, this is what I've heard. The 10th is the Try to Impress Everyone with how great life is. 20th is a smaller version of 10th. Some people are still insecure and trying to impress, others are grown up lol. And the 30th? I've heard that called the Great Equalizer. Life is what it is. Nearly everyone has suffered from a great loss, be it career, divorce, death, children, etc. Most are sympathetic and get it, having been there, done that themselves. The bad apples can't hide their stench anymore lol. And the 40th and beyond are the Survivors. Life has put them through the wringer, they've survived, and just wanna get together and laugh. About the younger generation, growing up with big hair or whatever trended, and grandchildren.

      If you decide to go, I think you're probably picking a good one. If nothing else, you'll leave with the grateful feeling that you don't look as old as they did lolol.

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    2. I have gone to all of mine except maybe one - we have them every 5 years. 5th was not worth going - after that I enjoyed them. Didn't get the same drift that Debby stated. I have always met new folks and enjoyed seeing and hearing about them. There have been all kinds of folks - but they were still my peers.
      I look forward to Sat. It should be fun. I like to people watch too!

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    3. Thanks for filling me in Debby. I lived too far away for more than 20 years which is the biggest reason I didn't go to any. Now I'm within driving range so I may go. It would be fun to see a few people after all these years. I always got along with people from all the various cliques. I enjoyed high school but it wasn't the end all be all that I know it was for some. Honestly it feels like a lifetime ago.

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  2. Good Morning from the kiln! Really? 96° projected today. It's like when I lived in California and we're dying to wear our new fall clothes, but 8ts too hot!!

    Oy, Cheryl. I bet everyone here has a high school story. Popular or shy, it certainly stands out. It's such a fishbowl and no matter how many students, we're all on display. But when I was done, I was done. No reunions. In my 20s, I met up with some people for dinner, but that was it. I was always being invited, but just wasn't interested. My big mouth friend, I'm sure, has come to her own conclusions and shared them with everyone cuz that's what she's done since we were 13 lol. And she doesn't know squat lol, but she's a gossipy sort. The thing is, I enjoyed HS. I wish I had taken studying more seriously, lol, but I think most everyone thinks that. I wasn't popular or unpopular, just a garden variety sort. My mom said I was a social butterfly. My boyfriend was on the basketball team so that added fun, but also scrutiny. Girls are vicious little creatures πŸ˜‚. He had plenty of admirers, but he was over possessive and crazy jealous. Dodged a bullet there, no doubt. Literally. I think it's great to keep in touch if it adds to your life. I met my 2 best friends working sports and another was my college roommate. They're my 3 best buds now and I'm so very lucky to have them. We talk often. Sorry, didn't mean to carry on...

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    1. dang that is still hot!
      I have enjoyed the reunions much more than the high school years. My best friends then are still my good friends. I never dated a guy I went to school with - before Glen, all the guys I dated were older and not in my class. Glen was a bit younger than me - that is the one that stuck!!!!!

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  3. Amelia, if you decide to make that pull apart pizza, make sure you leave the loaf attached at the bottom when you cross cut. Otherwise, it'll be fall apart pizza πŸ˜‚. It's very good. Hubs requests it at least once a month. I usually make it on a Sunday after church cuz it's quick and easy.

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    1. I'll be trying that pull apart pizza in my kitchen, too, Debby. It sounds yummy! --Elise

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  4. Enjoy your weekend visiting with friends! It's good you can keep up with the people you enjoy, not the ones who were not part of your group. I have not been to any of my reunions. The Farmer's mother insisted he go to one of his and we had a miserable time. Nothing had changed with those people except some extra weight, wrinkles and graying hair. I agree with Miss Debby that it's great to keep in touch if it adds to your life. It's wonderful if high school friendships continue, but people change, folks move away.

    Foggy morning...we're going to Meijer in a bit to pick up a few things. Laundry to be done and the ever-present boxes of pictures.

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    1. I think they add to my life. Even those I didn't know - can become new acquaintances. I see nothing wrong with getting to know new people at any age. I am fortunate to have some great friends.
      It sure was foggy - now just gloomy!

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  5. Oh wow, that sounds like so much fun, Cheryl. How neat having the same friends for so long, I hope you have a wonderful time at the reunion this weekend.

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    1. Thanks. Yes, many of us have kept in touch and then have just remained friends for years. It will be fun.

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  6. Cheryl, this weekend is also my fiftieth high school reunion and am looking forward to and dreading parts of it too. Class had only ninety six graduates and throughout the previous reunions, the cliques from high school still hung together. Wanted to shout out and say, "Get over yourselves!," but didn't. Maybe will do that this time. I, too, was not that popular in high school (was an art club nerd), but tried to be friends with everyone. Still remain close friends with one girl in particular (close since elementary school), so if this reunion is anything like the previous ones, I will know for sure who my true friends are. Sorry for length and venting.

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    1. Well, I hope you have fun at yours. Class of '73!!!!!
      There have always been a few cliques that stuck together - but they weren't my cup of tea - so I didn't worry about it. They have started being more friendly over the years. Meh - didn't matter - there are plenty of others!!! LOL
      Have fun!

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  7. How fun, Cheryl! Both the lunch yesterday and the reunion this weekend! Good for you!!! I've never been to a reunion because, to begin with, I went to 4 different high schools in 2 different states. My senior year I only had classes until 10:30 a.m. and worked. I went to 2 different colleges in 2 states as well. Pretty much, throughout my school years, the Fleetwood Mac song, "Gypsy" kind of defined my life. I lived on both the east and west coasts during those years, and many states in between.

    When Hubs and I married in Jan. 1985, I expected to finally settle down. LOL! His career moved us from CA, to TX, to CO, to OH, and back to CA before we retired in AZ last year. I've always said God has a sense of humor. But I do love hearing about those who've lived in (roughly) one place all their lives. Enjoy all the fun of your 50th reunion! Can't wait to hear how it goes. --Elise

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    1. Elise, I went to three different high schools and lived on the same farm the whole time. Consolidation...

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    2. Wow, Donna. That's something. I was always the "new girl", always "just passing through". Some friendships lasted awhile via letters in the mail, but eventually everyone just sort of went their own ways. I'd have loved to grow up on a farm. Always made friends with local farmers even as a little girl. Heck, I'd have loved to just have been able to put down roots! On the other hand, I got to see a lot of America up close and personal. Every state, every region has it's own uniqueness. --Elise

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    3. I changed elementary schools a lot. 5 times. I hated it. In 6th grade, I hated the school, the teacher, everything. I came home one day and announced I wasn't going back. That if they forced me, I would either leave or get sent to the principal's office. Pretty gutsy for an 11 yo, huh?!? So, my mom let me move back in with my grands, I went to school again with all my oldest friends and stayed there until after HS. My mom remarried and I was NOT happy when my life was turned inside out. Ya think divorce is hard on kids?! That was a cakewalk compared to blending families. Hated every minute.

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    4. Moving all over the place aside, I was fortunate, Debby, in that when my mom remarried, her two oldest and all of Pop's kids were adults living on their own, also all over the country. It was just little brother and me. Pop treated us like his own, but he'd known us since I was about 7 yrs. old and little brother a toddler. Long story, but he'd built our house in coastal VA and the families got close. I suppose I took most of the many moves in stride. High school was harder, but I started working at 15, so a social life wasn't a priority, although I did date a lot. New girls are appealing, I found.
      ;-) --Elise

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    5. I went t 3 schools my whole life. Grade school, junior high and high school and most of the people I knew from grade school followed through the same way. There was always a new person or two - but pretty much we all stayed together as a group all 12 years. I lived in the same house all my life as did most of my siblings. When mom passed they had been in the house like 64 years.

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    6. I've always kind of envied that, Cheryl. Oddly enough, at almost every new school, many of the kids envied *my* life of moving around so much. They saw it as an exciting, adventurous life. LOL! --Elise

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    7. Just to add, I was dragged all over creation by the adults in my life.
      ;-) --Elise

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    8. I am very glad I had a simple life - it has served me well.

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    9. Elise, when I was a senior I too went to school a half day and worked the other half through Distributive Education, a class at school. I worked at Sears & Roebuck in the credit department.

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  8. Goodness, you have some great memories and keeping your friendships alive is amazing to me.
    Like you, I wasn't popular in highschool, and had few friends. There are two of a class of 160 or so that I would still consider friends. Others are FB friends but that's about it.
    I went to a couple of the earlier reunions (#10 for sure). This year is our 46th, and I know several of the in-crowd get together every year. I may, or may not attend the 50th. If nothing else, to satisfy my curiousity that they've all aged too. :p

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    1. I didn't realize I had so many fun memories - but I really do. My friends are precious.
      Yes, a big part of me likes to go to feel a little better about me!!!! I figure I didn't age too badly, when I look around!!! LOL
      I am for sure a people watcher!

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  9. I am pulling up on my 70th hs reunion. We have them every five years and I have been to all but two. I have enjoyed all my reunions.

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    1. That's so nice to hear, P.P. As mentioned, I've never been to one, but at the HS I graduated from, only had classes in the morning my senior year. I'd gone to 3 other HSs beforehand. Knew teachers better than classmates at the last one. --Elise

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    2. That is neat. We do every 5 years too. Nice t hear you go as well and enjoy them too.

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  10. My 60th hs reunion was several years ago. I've only been to one reunion. The in-crowd was still the in-crowd. There were three of us outsiders and we remained friends all the way through all the years. Now there are only two of us and we don't live anywhere near each other, alas.
    MaryB

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    1. Really? That is amazing that the crowds didn't change after all those years. What a shame you and your friend have distance of miles. I hope you still keep in touch.

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  11. I'm so glad you had a nice lunch with friends! That is valuable.

    I've never been to a highschool reunion of mine. It was a large highschool our class alone had around 750 kids and many of the kids had moved in, there parents were with Nasa. Many of those families (not all) were as about as warm as a witches behind as my dad would have kind of said. ; ) I was from the old town, in an old neighborhood and it was very sad how some of us were considered. I didn't realize it until a girl made a comment not realizing I was from that town. My families were the dinosaurs of the town, very nice families too, the salt of the earth! Founding families. One Italian and one German. Hard working, talented, intelligent people who knew what life was. I was in the marching band and that was fun until I became a baton twirler, the other four twirlers were mean girls. I quit the band after the baton twirling year. Long story. I too only went to school half a day my senior year and worked at Sears & Roebucks in the credit department.

    Yeah....My freshman year was fun in the regular marching band but after that downhill it went! I was honored with a few things but not super great memories. Aren't I a sad-sack? Haha.

    My husband's 50th? is coming up and we may go to that. It was a guy's Catholic school and they were pretty nice guys. All walks of life. I even attended some of their activities instead of mine ! lol back when. I liked the guys there better! Haha! Much more down to earth kind of like Boys Town or something to that effect.

    Interesting thoughts here, so different, every one.

    God bless us all! ~Amelia

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    1. Not everyone had a good experience in those years. We all come from different walks and people (many times kids) can be cruel. I had a few of those experiences too.
      I am sorry for those who did not have a good experience. Childhood and teen years should be remembered with fondness - what a shame so many aren't.
      I do hope you can go with your hubby to his and have a wonderful time.

      PS - Girls can be bad!!!! I get it. I always preferred working with men over women! The snark factor!!!!!!

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    2. Yes, girls can be *so* mean. That high school I went to was a girls school and the cliques were very tight. A lot depended where you were born, what kind of job your dad had, whether your name was one of the "good ones", where your house was, etc. Very hard to understand for a teen.
      MaryB

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    3. Cheryl, yes! I too have always gotten along better with males! In highschool I ate lunch with a couple of guy friends. Our school was so huge there were 4 lunch periods. The two guys were two of my acquaintances boyfriends, the girls were in another lunch period. They didn't have any problem with me eating lunch with those guys, we just ate and had polite conversation, it felt like a safe place. Women are horrible many times unless you just really find a sweet person. Jealousy, manipulation, gossip....Ick. Our girls are sweet girls and they tell me all the time when they run into horrible people how unbelievable it is because none of us in our home are like that and always tried to be merciful, we're not manipulative, we try to speak the truth in love with people.. But some are like that unfortunately, I don't know how they sleep at night. (It doesn't even matter the age). We're not perfect but try to keep a perfect heart! : )

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    4. MaryB, I just can't even imagine people being like that, and ya know? They are probably still like that too. Very shallow people! I can't even imagine my parents asking questions like that, the house, the neighborhood, their last name. Oh, it just makes me ill those kind of people. Ice water must run through their veins as someone I know put it once! lol It's not only hard for a teen to understand, but it's hard for me, a Mimi now to understand too. Here where we live there are a couple of nearby towns where we are considered outsiders, it's a bit of reverse snobbery...Just awful. Not Christ-like at all. We've even experienced it in a couple of those particular small towns' churches.

      I've learned in life to just stay my sweet self, like that old Nat King Cole song, "Stay as Sweet as You Are" ....the words go..."You're divine dear...."

      Yep, usually my girlfriends are older than I when I do find a nice friend. My last friend in our area was my mom's age, and she's passed away. She had stories too! And this lady looked like Greer Garson when she was young, my mom too was very pretty but lived in the little waterfront town. One fella she was engaged to from the city got engaged to another high dollar Italian family and left my mom in the dust years ago.

      So many have stories to tell and Gifts to share, I like to think it makes us all more sensitive to others though because of those hard knocks, (I can spot someone feeling left out from across the room) and I'm sure you would agree and now can share with others and sympathize. : )

      I don't guess we'll every understand those kind of mean girls.

      I appreciate you chiming in, MaryB!

      ~Amelia

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    5. I guess the old saying 'different strokes for different folks' rings true. It takes all kinds sadly. I cant imagine going out of my way to be mean or bully someone or just to act better than. It is good we aren't all the same - but sad there are so many hateful people.

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  12. I have more or less lost contact with my friends from high school. I have a feeling we just grew apart in many ways. I am so glad that you get together with your friends. Enjoy your reunion.

    God bless.

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    1. I think growing apart is just natural. As we age and start new lives - there are different interests. My dear friends have just always been there.
      Thanks - it will be fun just to people watch if nothing else.

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  13. I have never been to my reunions...my parents moved the day I graduated from high school, along with my 3 siblings of course. I went to college summer school to keep me busy, I guess. I stayed in touch with my 2 best friends. We were in the popular crowd, but I always felt sort of odd because my parents were very strict and I had "rules" to follow---most did not. While living far away it was not convenient to go to reunions. So many of my class of 250 stayed in that town all their lives!

    We did go to my hubby's 10th...and it was as described by one of you...putting on airs and so on. He had no desire to go to any others. Actually, we moved away from that area (Illinois to Florida) so it was not convenient to go. If we had stayed in his home town it might have been different. My Connecticut best friends stayed in touch through the years. One and her family even came to visit when our kids were small. Now, I can no longer find her---no more email or phone #, although I find no obit. We last corresponded the Christmas during the pandemic. The other friend, 2 years ago, wrote to me and said she was no longer going to do Christmas cards. And I have not heard from her since. Sad, huh? They are both divorced with now 'significant others'.

    Anyway, to each their own and I hope you have a wonderful weekend and reunion, Cheryl. Hubby was class of "61 and I was class of '65.

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    1. I do believe it is easier when one stays in the area. I always comment how I never run into anyone - but from seeing pics of the pre-reunion stuff going on this week (not attending those) - odds are I wouldn't recognize them if I did. So many look so different. Funny how that happens as we age!!!!!! LOL
      What a shame you have lost contact with the 2 good friends. Maybe they have started new lived with their new 'significant' others and have moved on. Truly is sad.
      Than you. It is interesting to hear everyone else's stories here.

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    2. Cheryl, all this talk about high school from a time long ago. The graduating class numbered 30-40 in a small town in a rural community. The divisions back then were town vs country kids. I still live in the same community & one of my best friends dates back to grade one. My son had some of the same teachers I did. There have been 3 reunions 10 yrs apart. I helped organize the last one 18 yrs ago. Sadly, one of the main organizers passed shortly after that reunion & no one else has taken up the torch. Students who hadn't attended previously were happy for another opportunity to attend. A new resident at the assisted living lodge where my mom lives turned out to be someone from my graduating class; a true marker of the time that has passed since high school graduation. I may end up there as well with my mom! Have a great w/e.

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    3. My oldest friend goes back to grade 1 as well. Sad that no one stepped up after the organizer passed. How neat on such a small community. My eldest sis is 92, and we each (5) went to the same school and had the same principal and many of the same teachers. I still find that cool.
      Maybe you could get another couple people to help you and just have an informal gathering at a park or something. That would be neat.
      Thanks

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  14. i love this Cheryl-50 years! Doesn't the time go by fast? I bet the other diners enjoyed hearing your laughter and maybe they heard a great remembrance as well.
    I graduated with 600 can't imagine graduating with 1,000. Oh my goodness.
    Have a great weekend!

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    1. Thanks. 1,000 is a lot for sure. Didn't know but a handful really - every day I see something posted on the FB school page about someone I have never heard of!!!!!
      We did have a really fun lunch - so hopefully the reunion will be a hit too.

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  15. A horrible day today. Prayers please! We had to put our little rescued poodle, our angel-girl, Missy Christmas down this evening at the vets, I've had to go to the vets twice this week, once with Muffie and today with Missy. I am so glad I kept on good terms with that vet's office btw. I'm not doing well. Will give details later. Thank you ahead of time to anyone who will pray. Just devastated.

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    1. Oh Amelia, I am so sorry. That is such a horrible thing to have to do. Our fur babies are our children and family - we love them so much. Huge hugs and prayers for comfort.

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    2. Prayers and hugs, Amelia.
      --Frances

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    3. Thank ya'll *so* very much, I feel so very down and out about it all.

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    4. So sorry to read this, Amelia. Add my prayers and hugs to the list. --Elise

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  16. So sorry Amelia. Prayers and hugs to you.

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  17. Thank you so much, janie, I covet those prayers and hugs.

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