Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Fifty Years Later

I just returned (Sunday) from my High School 50 year reunion. It was a blast! the event was well organized and we had lots of time to talk and catch up with classmates we haven't seen (in some cases) in 50 years. We were an interesting class with a wide variety of professions. Most of us are retired, but one is still fighting wildfires whenever he's called and another is trying to decide whether to run for re-election to the statewide office he has held for a number of years. Most of us are in pretty good shape health wise although I heard the usual comments about aches and pains. 27 members of our class have died in the past 50 years, not too bad for a class of 110 at graduation time. Most of the survivors were present at the reunion, coming from all over the country.

I found it interesting that I was singled out as being over weight even though there were others who were much heavier than I. No one was cruel in their assessment of my girth, rather just commenting on how much I had changed. I think the surprise was because they still remembered the skinny kid who was 5'5" tall and weighed 130 lbs at graduation. I am a little taller and a lot heavier, I carry it fairly well, no huge stomach, but I am certainly not that poor little underfed kid whose ribs you could count. Nearly all of my weight gain has come after my retirement, I've become rather sedentary because of my bad knees. I try to work out for 30 minutes 5 days a week, but that doesn't lead to weight loss, rather just maintenance. I like my food too much I guess. My biggest surprise of the reunion was how small Richard was! He was one of the toughest kids I knew and in my eyes towered over me in height and weight. Seeing him at the reunion for the first time in fifty years really stopped me in my tracks. I was at least 4 inches taller and 100 pounds heavier! He said that 20+ years in the Marines took all of the toughness out of him, but I still wouldn't want to cross him. It was great seeing him and reconnecting. After 50 years, we no longer felt the need to impress anyone with our success. I think we all realized that surviving 50 years was success enough.

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