Monday, July 19, 2010


It's been another busy time—this last week was occupied in getting ready for my 35th High School Reunion. I made my way to the upper reaches of Maine, the extreme northeast corner of the United States. Go a few feet more and you're in Canada. If it wasn't so far (8 hours by car) I'd attend more.

Been back to that town only once in the last 34 years, and that was a drive-by. Haven't seen most of the attendees since graduation, and it was good to see them again.

Most of the people didn't look like they did back then, and my name memory bank was rusty. Didn't help that most people didn't wear name tags! Most of them have seen each other in the intervening years, and all have made previous reunions. I only recognized about four without help.

Most recognized me, however, saying I hadn't changed. The dam let loose as memories came flooding back. With about 50 people present, I didn't get a chance to talk to everyone beyond basics of “Where are you now?”

The most interesting thing is when someone would recount a story, and the other person (who was ostensibly there at the time of the story) would have no recollection of it. One person's standout incident was another person's forgotten tidbit.

Had a great time. Taking the class picture was fun, and we were all rambunctious. Instead of “cheese!” I yelled “Show your surgery scars!” Had we done so, we'd probably have yielded a crop to scare combat brigades. Would have been interesting to tally up all the medications taken by that group.

There was no one I hated or even disliked. People were cordial and not abusive. It's nice to be in a room where people seem delighted to see you and talk to you. Haven't had that in awhile...

The town parade was impressive, it's a regional one for most of the county. And it's a big county. An hour and a half for all the floats to go by! And one float went by twice, surprising and puzzling us. Apparently, they got lost earlier, got squeezed into line, circled around, and also got in their original lineup slot.

The highlight was the seemingly endless parade of tiara-topped princesses, queens, and Misses, winners of various beauty and talent pageants. It seemed like every third parade vehicle sported a young miss waving to us from under a sparkling crown. Pretty amazing for a low-population region.

My companion was pleased to see both of Maine's United States Senators walk the parade, and shake hands in the meet-and-greet, all without obvious bodyguards or Secret Service presence. It speaks well of Maine that legislators can go among the common folk without cadres of handlers and musclemen walling off the person. In these troubled times of violent fanaticism, it's nice to have sense, less paranoia, and a sense of normalcy. It's the way things should be.


  1. Discovering the talents of a classmate, 35 years later, is a joy! You're great Dale, and I look forward to reading more.

  2. Glad it was fun for you! I had a great time too! Even after the chess...