At a recent August reunion gathering of former Richfield Springs Central School students from the years 1955 - 1965, I found myself standing in the middle of a group of 250 people, not recognizing many and knowing by the puzzled look on their faces, they didn’t recognize me either!!!
It was rather like the feelings of a new student in a new school, in a new town, except I’m 65 years old! I’ve lived in this community my whole life and attended K- 12 in the local school!
After meandering through the group for a few minutes, it wasn’t long before delightful squeals, hugs and hearty handshakes of recognition melded everyone into a happy group of renewed friends. We reminisced, laughed, cried and talked nonstop about our kids, grandkids, and topics ranging from football games, class trips, hula-hoops and Howdy Doody.
Some of us have never left the area and see life long “best” friends often. They are such a comfort. Other friends have moved on and made lives for themselves in other places, some far away, and we’ve lost touch.
One of those renewed “best” friends said, “In the first few minutes we were together, it was like I never left.”
Shared history and deep positive feelings are bonding. I’m thankful for all the hard work that made the reunion gathering possible. I’m thankful to be present and accounted for to participate in the reunion. I’m thankful to realize how lucky I am to have the relationships I so enjoy both near and far. They are “Forever Friends and Keepers.”
I am hopeful to be present and accounted for when we meet again.
Class of ‘63