Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Last Weekend

I've spent most of the last 26 years feeling disconnected from where I came from. All of my DC friends know I'm from Idaho, but the most direct manifestation of that is my fascination with potatoes. I get back to my hometown usually a couple of times a year, but often I just fly in, and fly right back out again. I haven't had an opportunity for a long time just to take a car trip around the Pacific Northwest.

This last week, I came back for my second high school reunion that I've attended this summer. They were three weeks apart, and worth the effort getting here. This last weekend was Moscow High School's class of 1969 reunion. It had a good turnout of about 80 people, and we look pretty good, considering the mileage.

6 p.m. Friday night, most of us met at Mingle's, a bar down on Main Street to talk and drink. When I walked in the door, Steve, a classmate and former neighbor grabbed me and immediately introduced me to Ben, whom I did not recognize at all (sorry, Ben...), and drinks all around. Many conversations, explanations, and exclamation later, I stumbled back to the hotel at 1:30 p.m. feeling quite warm and fuzzy. It was a real joy to see all of these men and women after forty+ years.

I ran into three men who were my best friends in grade school and junior high: Bruce, Paul, and Clay. Bruce, Clay, and I had survived the rigors of Mrs. Jantzen, and Mrs. Day. Paul was a neighbor kid with whom I had grown up. I was deeply touched to see them and hear their stories. Clay's sister, Maggi, crashed the reunion, with loud and wonderful results.

I walked away from Moscow and Potlatch when I moved back to DC. I'm going to be much more careful about staying in touch with these men and women who made me part of who I am. I want to remember and honor that.