I have mixed feelings about reunions and this year has been my season for reunions. They seem, well,  to be a lot of trouble and you are never quite sure what you are going to get for your effort. I hear this same refrain from others. Lots of vacillation takes place, with all the pros and cons. It’s a commitment we are not sure we want to make.

Reunions mean reuniting with people we don’t see or talk to every day. As much as I debate with myself about reunions, I’m always glad when I go. I’m reminded that I need to change my attitude about this.

Reunions come in all shapes and sizes. Weddings are unions and reunions. We see people we don’t often come in contact with, and it’s good to catch up with those old friends and acquaintances. 

Funerals are reunions as well. The sad occasion is made better with people who come together to remember the departed. The rest of us must carry on until our time comes. I find funerals, as much as I dislike the reason for having them, somewhat uplifting in an odd sort of way. They remind me to live each day to the fullest.

Enough of that. I’ve reached an age where the number 50 has been on prominent display. We recently celebrated my 50th high school reunion. My first impression… We are old! It was a brilliant idea to have name tags with our old high school photographs on them.  Otherwise, it would have been rough sledding. 

It had been 30 years since I attended my last high school reunion. We had fun reminiscing about the good old days and our mischief, lots of mischief. It was fortunate that Linda and I were in high school together. A grade behind me, she was excited to reacquaint with her old boyfriends. It was reassuring that at the end of the evening, she still went home with me.

The Wednesday before the high school reunion, a bunch of high school buddies met at The BlueGill for lunch. It was a lot of fun once we got the ailments conversation out of the way. It’s a good group, and it is interesting to see where life has taken us over the years. We plan to make this happen every six months or so. I’m looking forward to it!

Two weeks ago, I got together with football friends from my Birmingham days for a long weekend on Perdido Key. We’ve attended  Alabama away games every year for 23 years. We didn’t make it to Tampa, but we still got together. 

When there isn’t a campus or matchup we haven’t already been to, we find an alternative location. Everyone came to Point Clear during the pandemic year. Four of us have roots in Mobile, so coming to Perdido Key was our old stomping grounds, even if we don’t stomp as hard as we used to. Next year, we are going to Madison, Wisconsin. They’d better be ready for us!

This weekend, we are having our 50th DKE pledge class fraternity reunion near Camden, Alabama. Our host, Bill Miller is heading it up and hosting us at his hunting camp. We will reenact the Winged Disk Croquet Tournament. All players have their pseudo-croquet names. I am Art Dawson. There will be a Calcutta. Bet your money on Grunge Creole. 

We are even bringing in New Boys to cook for us Friday night. That’s all I can say about that. I am looking forward to the telling of tall tales. They grow with each passing year, and it’s a group effort to fill in the memory gaps. The variations of each story just make them better. Stretching the truth is allowed.

Not labeled as a reunion, but two Sundays ago, Bobby Mudd put on a show to beat the band at Oak Hollow Farm. The infamous Locust Fork Band came to play and packed the house. They, among several other great bands, were our college staple for awesome music. Fifty years ago they played frat houses, lake parties, and bars throughout Tuscaloosa and other college towns.

Their music is outstanding and they can still bring it. I felt as if I was in college again. I’m not exaggerating, it was so much fun! They wisely brought current musical icon, Robert Sully, of Tuscaloosa and Eastern Shore music fame (Judge Roy Bean), who stepped in for a few songs and played a nice tribute to the late Jimmy Buffett. A David Wilkins rendition of The Perfect Country Song was a fitting close to the show. 

I can’t say enough about what a great job Bobby did putting this together. Thirty tables of ten people each with plenty of wiggle room to visit with friends you don’t often see. We shared Incredible memories of college days and special times when we were young and foolish, and life was easy. Thanks to Cindy McCrory and Blue Room Photography for the pics!

These days reunions are important. Some friends are no longer with us and that makes me realize why we have reunions and why I need to be there. This spat of recent reunions has been a blast. I’ve enjoyed visiting and remembering that we are all growing old together. 

It makes me appreciate our differences, and that the roads we have traveled haven’t always been easy. We need more reunions. Make the effort. Go to the reunion. You will be glad you did!

Sep 27, 2023
Musings From The Cove

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