Reunion, Part I: Old and New Faces

It was the afternoon of my 15-year high school reunion. I walked from the parking lot into the school through the Loading Dock, as I had every morning for school. I had been back once for a college-age get-together (just once because people kept calling me by another classmate's name) and maybe another time or two as my sister finished up her last two years, but I couldn't recall those occasions.

Returning there, alone, made me feel a bit anxious and lost, but I tried to put on a brave face and remind myself that I was armed with good "material": grad school and a photo of my niece and nephews--probably the greatest sources of pride (and joy, to some degree) for me these days. I went up to the check-in table and got my name tag. I went by a different name when I was there, but my current one was on the tag. I decided to hope for the best as I just. . . stood there. Wondering if I looked stupid standing there.

My ninth grade Honors English teacher was the first person I knew. He saw my name tag and immediately grabbed my hand with his frail one, asking me how I was and what I was doing. It surprised me (as it surprised me that anyone remembered me at all). I was one of the few students who wasn’t one of his fans during my high school time; I just didn’t get his style of teaching. He lectured a lot and I had a hard time connecting what he said with what we were supposed to learn. His criticism of my work seemed harsh, and it was only years later that I realized how much potential he saw in me, that he had to challenge me so much. I told him, I had a degree in English Lit and was back in school, and working on my novels, and he said that was good. I could tell that recent illnesses had definitely quieted his personality a bit, and that was a little saddening to realize.

I also thought that when I went to the restroom before liturgy I recognized one of my classmates as she was walking out, but she blew past me—and I have a tendency to think I recognize people but am wrong—so I didn’t pursue it. After freshening up, I walked back down the hall of the “Fine Arts Wing” towards the entrance, and there was Amy G. walking in with her mom. She’d said to look for her blond hair and signature blue glasses, and that was the tip-off for sure. Very cute! Her mom is a spunky gal as well. I was very glad to have people to sit with during what I hoped would be a standard (enough) liturgy before the speeches and individual class cocktail parties.

Up Next: Good Old "Liturgy"

Comments

Amy Giglio said…
Thanks Kate!
Can't wait to read what you write about the Mass. :)
Ashley said…
Oooh, you finally posted it! It's quite interesting, really. can't wait to hear more! :) (sorry, am totally trying to play catch up on blogs!)

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