My twenty-year high school reunion was eleven days ago. I missed it. Eleven days ago, I was in another country altogether, furiously scrubbing mold out of our rented house in Lowestoft, England, in preparation for the landlord’s inspection. Sad about not being able to hang out with dear friends I’ve kept up with over the past two decades or meet up with friends I haven’t seen in twenty years, I did my own reminiscing. And you know what? I had a great time doing it. With my right hand I scrubbed at the mold, and with my left I slapped the floor tiles in sudden “Oh, yeah! I remember THAT!” moments. One memory led to another and another and another like dominoes with happy faces instead of the white dots.
I loved high school. I wasn’t popular in the Cool Girl or BMOC sense, but I knew a lot of people because I was active in sports and such, and even at that age I was acutely intrigued by the variety of personalities there are and interests people have. There was always someone around doing or saying something worth paying attention to. Thinking about those years and those people resurrected some really funny stories. I’d tell a few here, but most fall into the “you had to be there” category. Being a teenager in the 80s was something to be experienced first-hand, that’s for sure. My stories of big hair alone could fill up pages. Have you ever lugged a massive spray can of Aqua Net around in your purse? If you have, then you already understand the 80s mindset; if you haven’t, there are no words to bring you there.
Actually, it’s a wee bit startling to realize that I’m old enough to have a twentieth reunion yet. At least to me it is. Without life markers like that, I could easily fool myself into thinking I’m still a young twenty-something . . . okay, maybe young thirty-something, with ‘young’ being the key word. It’s amazing what a dramatic filter Time can be. When your current events turn into your distant memories, things that were Good seem even better and things that were Bad are rendered insignificant, bearable, or just plain funny. I’d appreciated that before, but never so intensely.
I truly wish I could have been back in San Diego a few days earlier and attended the reunion itself. It would have been great to reminisce with other human beings. And maybe I would’ve won the “Most Kids Born at One Time” award like my husband did at his twentieth reunion. But I’m okay with my solo trip down memory lane. Really, I am. If nothing else, it made scrubbing the tiles under the toilet a lot more pleasant.