Friday, March 18, 2011

The Reunion

Well it happened and the person that flinched first wasn't who I thought it would be. You see when I graduated from high school nearly 19 years ago, I and my other seven classmates and one foreign exchange student went on our way and we never looked back. In fact, I went 17 years without seeing a classmate at all and then a couple years ago, I saw five in the space of a couple months. But then things went back to normal and I figured all would be good until we neared the summer of our 20th class reunion or perhaps the 25th.

Then this past weekend, I got an email from the foreign exchange student who had found my address and she told me that she was going to be visiting the U.S. here this summer and thought it would be great to see everyone in a class reunion. Would it be possible if I tracked everyone down and arranged it?

At first I thought it would be a lot of work but due to my incredible cyber stalking sleuthing skills, I think I have it well under control. I first made a list of all seven of my classmates and any information that I knew which pretty much was nothing. I knew four of them most likely still lived in my home county but only knew the address of one of them. I decided to start on one of the harder ones whom I had run into at a gas station and who had told me that she and her husband were leaving for Germany in a couple weeks to live while her husband was stationed there. I remember asking who her husband was and her telling me and me knowing who it was but for the life of me I couldn't remember. All I could remember it was someone from my home town. I picked up the phone book and started scanning through the three pages of names of everyone who lives in that town which amounted only to somewhere shy of 200 entries and soon found who it was I was looking for under the B's. The number was dead of course but there was another person with the same surname whom I vaguely remembered as his younger brother. I called him and soon had the number of my classmate who was now living in North Carolina while her husband was in Iraq. I was on a roll.

I have reached four more of my classmates with two still outstanding. I've left phone message and sent a message via a social network site that one belongs too and I am in contact with a person who works with the younger brother of the third. I tried calling another of the latter's younger brothers and he didn't have a phone number, married name or address so I'm guessing I'm dealing with some sort of family estrangement.

This whole thing would have been much easier ten years ago before everyone had cell phones and started dropping land lines rendering most paper directories obsolete. I find myself calling siblings and parents still with land lines to obtain cell phone numbers of those who don't. Hopefully the rest of the work will be easier than the handful of hours I have spent so far and perhaps by this time next week I can wrap up the duty of class reunion organizer. Later this summer we will then hold our 19th year reunion which I'm guessing if things go as I predict, will be the last one we will probably have for awhile. Maybe the next one will be our 31rst or some other odd number. After all, our class of eight and one foreign exchange student was anything but typical.


geri said...

I laughed imagining at your possible reaction when you were tasked in organizing a reunion lol Back in the Philippines my classmates would have a reunion every year during Christmas. Next year will be our 25th, it supposedly super-grand, hope I will back there to join them.

R. Sherman said...

You're a better man than I. Organizing those things can be a real pain. Wait 'til to have to choose the menu.


sage said...

I think it was in Lake Wobegon Days that Garrison Keillor tells of the girls who ran his high school were still running the reunions (and I have found that to be the case from my school). Have fun. If they all show up with a spouse, you'll need to reserve two tables! :) I went to a much larger high school!

Ed said...

Geri - yeah, my first reaction was why me.

R. Sherman - Fortunately for me, we don't have many options for eating when it comes to a reunion so the planning part will be easy.

Sage - Yeah, I thought the planner would be one girl in particular. She was always the planner.

Three Score and Ten or more said...

My graduating class was about 400 souls. They held a reunion for the twenty fifth on a year when I was in
Finland with a Fulbright. The fiftieth as in 2002, and we made plans to go. A week before we were to leave, I had a sudden unexpected quadruple heart bypass. I get the occasional facebook post from one or two, and my best friend at the time tracked me down by googling my blog. Otherwise nothing. (No one tried to do a fifty fifth in 2007)

Eutychus2 said...

Like Sherm said, 'you are a better man than I am!' All our reunions, which are pretty much on target every five years is planned by the ladies - that's probably why they are moderately successful. Have fun/

Bone said...

Wow, I thought my class of 91 students was pretty small.

Speaking of, I got a message on Facebook the other day saying our 20th reunion is coming up. But it must have been a mistake because there's no way I've been out of high school for twenty years.