Reunions are strange pleasures.

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The years roll away seeing familiar faces, some wear and tear, lots of excited chatter and much dwelling on people and events from ages ago, their relevance of mild importance, yet still a crucial part of this momentary communication. And I am as guilty as the next.

Despite a Toyota Landcruiser slamming into my car at a giveway on Water Lane (ie about 5 minutes drive from home and causing two days so far of neck ache), the sun was shining, the food was good and the ambience excellent, so what was not to enjoy?

But inevitably, little undercurrents surface as they often do in any reunion. The cliques are every bit as exclusive as in one’s schooldays. The definition of ‘being friendly’ was the same pat answer from one as from another a couple of years earlier: that it was inevitable that people would be friendlier with some than others.

Of course, absolutely true. But it just sounded like something previously discussed in their other cliquey socials in various exotic or other locations., which left a jarring note. Indeed, one previous member of the hallowed group seemed a bit miffed at being excluded from a particular gathering.

And for the rest, some did feel the pain of being left out of friendships that once were strong but had become neglected for various reasons. A few had called or emailed me to say they wouldn’t be there. Some were honest enough to say they did not like that exclusiveness of the cliqueys, wondering why they should be bothered to meet up with people who could only abide their company for a boozy lunch once in every ten years!

After a recent similar correspondence, I too started to wonder about that. Any pain of rejection I may have felt had long disappeared, as not having my friendship is their loss – she says modestly!

We may only meet infrequently, but the repetitive nature of talking of things last discussed ten and twenty and thirty years ago is slightly wearing thin for me, and I felt it was going to be the last one I’d be going to. Reunions are for people who want to relive a moment or three of their past. I, unfortunately, am in a hurry to get to the future and that promised land in my mind.

As an aside, I am allowed some grumpiness as the one and only time I did organise a much larger gathering, that cliquey lot were the only ones not to attend. I can’t even remember why not, and anyway we had a good turn out but of various years. Another schoolmate also organised one at great personal effort, only for the cliqueys to avoid that one too. Desperately rude, of course.

Also rude and, for me, dimming any pleasure, are the people I have seen a good many times since schooldays, insisting on calling me by a name I loathe – wilfully ignoring my requests to be called Euphrosene. It is after all my name!

So, despite actually enjoying myself a lot, the after effect was not the bright light glow some others felt.

Art is informed by the life we lead, by our thoughts, experiences and desires. My blog posts are either streams of consciousness, wrestling with spiritual concepts or other experiences on this particular spiritual journey. For examples of how this translates into my art, please visit my gallery.

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4 thoughts on “Reunions are strange pleasures.

  1. About half of the people that I have known to go to a school reunion, have regretted it. I’ve often heard it said that once back in those circles, the old childlike circles form, including the role of bullies and bullied. It’s a shame. I’ve never been to one, but although in a way it does appeal to me, another part of me wonders whether the past is best left there in some circumstances.

  2. I was only bullied very very briefly by one person who actually was there but has changed so dramatically it was not an issue. But you are absolutely right, Helen, re childlike circles and mind sets still playing a part.

    There are no regrets on my part though my objectives were a little different when I organised my one and only effort. With us all getting older, I was a little worried about those who might have health or financial problems (perhaps I was thinking selfishly too, who knows?) and I thought since we all knew each relatively well once, that we could form a support group. It never happened and I let it drop.

    But I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little miffed that, despite meeting up and/or maintaining a loose kind of contact with many over these years, there was still this barrier – though I felt more for those who felt continuing hurt and I don’t think they will ever lose that hurt now. Hence the ripples of sadness etc.

  3. I can honestly say that if someone in my year organised a reunion, I would not go. I hated school, and I’ve not kept in touch with anyone from that era. Still, it would be nice if someone would organise such a thing so that I could snub the cool kids 😉

    Having said that, I wouldn’t be able to resist a sneaky look at the pics afterwards.

  4. @Mike Heheh! My curiosity does have a tendency to get the better of me but I’m sure you are not the only one to feel that way.

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