So this year is 25 years since I wrote matric(yes, I am that old) - for the international readers, that is our last year of high school at about age 18. I have not been good at keeping in touch with old friends from school - in fact I have only contacted 5 of the girls that I was friends with through the last 4 years or so. First contact has typically been via Facebook.I have met up with 3 of them - the other two live overseas. But I am intending on meeting up with two more soon. And still living in the same city, I do bump into some of them - sometimes in unexpected places like on holiday recently. But I digress.
A few enthusiastic people have started to organize a reunion, also mainly finding people (actively) through Facebook and we have started a Facebook group - we already have 83 members, including a few teachers that taught us. A further few were found by other memebers via phone, email etc and have managed to find 75% of our class mates.I have been asked to assist with some graphic stuff which I will gladly do and yes, I will go to the reunion. My problem is this - how the hec will I firstly remember all these people (I get friend requests and then see they were in class with me and just accept - no idea who they actually were)? I will take out my year book and page through, but I suspect I will have big gaps. In any event, I will go and enjoy.
What really triggered this little post (apart from Marcia's this morning), is how different people grow older. Remember - it has been 25 year since I saw some of them. Some of them, even after all this time, is still just the same. They look the same (a bit of lines added and maybe less hair) and sound and am just the same they were. Some of the woman have grown beautiful - no truly. There are at least 4 of the girls who look amazing - way prettier than when they were at school. One was rather over weight and is now an absolute beauty.In totality, most of the girls look a lot like they used to and I should recognize most of them in the street.But the big shocker is how a lot of the guys (and really not all - some are just like they used to be, or even fitter) are "ooms". Now if you are not South African you may not understand this -what I mean is that they look like older men - overweight with tummies, no hair, bears no resemblance than when they were at school. Gee, makes me wonder about the mindset of the Afrikaans man.I was truly shocked when 3 of the guys became Facebook friends with me and regardless of how many pictures I saw of them, I could not find the boy I knew in any way on the pictures.I would not recognize them even with a name tag attached.
But I do feel I need to share some of the observations I have made by getting into with so many of them after so many years.
- South African have really colonized the world - to name just a few my classmates live in : Australia, New Zeeland, Canada, USA, Britian, Saudi Arabia, Abu Dabi, Dubai, Taiwan, Spain, Botswana and Germany.
- 4 girls are gay - 2 I would have suspected. The other two - not a chance.Would have never guessed. Only one of the guys (whom we all knew about) is openly gay.
- We have had 4 of our school mates that have passed away - one committed suicide after he finished his national service (we are the last generation of that era), another also about two years after we finished school. One of our friends was shot in his house last year - I wrote about it here. The other one, nobody knows how or when.
- One's perception of yourself when you were at school can be seriously warped. I remember myself as being rather awkward and part of the arty crowd - not the "in" crowd.Always feeling as not really belonging anywhere. Now I have to hear from so many that I was a popular girl and remembered by many whom I can not vaguely remember at all. I am really puzzled by this.
- A lot of the people are divorced and in their second marriages. And a few have never been married (not counting the ones in item 2).
- Some have kids that have already finished school and one of the girls just had a little boy.
- At least 4 of us have twins of which only one pair is the result of fertility treatment.
- Most people remember me for always taking photos and painting (now that sounds like me) and dating the older boys .For how one of our class mates threw a compass into my bum in class because I dated his older brother. For being friends with my group - no surprise there. And also for being sick for a big part of my High school career - I only now found out most people had the misconception I had cancer while I only lost my hair due to an auto Immune disease. (Another post for another day.)
So in October I will see what the reunion hold. And you? Have you gone to your reunions? What is your observations?