April 15, 2009
Post Reunion Notes
On Black Saturday, we celebrated our 25th batch reunion.
I wouldn’t say that it was perfect; that it went according to plan. It wasn’t and it didn’t.
At the last hour—or was that last minute?—we learned that the singing was the finale: we had to change into our dance “costumes” fast and back into our “ball” attire faster. There were frayed nerves and flaring tempers. There were snags and hitches and more than enough factors to trigger hypertension and near heart attacks.
Two years of preparation, and when it came to call time, we were still a bunch of bumbling performers. Very much like the way we were when we were in high school.
In short, it was as if the 25 years never happened. Jay never aged a bit, and Nena towered as ever. Marissa laughed the same infectious laugh. I looked for traces of the old us in our newer, heavier figures and I was not disappointed.
We didn't lack in performers. Singers--and non-singers--hogged the videoke, while the more garrulous among us entertained with intoxicating renditions of their life and love stories. One girl went up the stage to do a monologue on the definition of chemistry and our bane of having to fertilize our practical-arts plots with dung. And when it was time for the ball and the program, we scraped past with our not-quite-as-perfect numbers. Heck, our kids even beat us by a mile.
Miscues notwithstanding, it was a happy, happy affair. We laughed hard as we rehashed old jokes, we cried some as former mentors gave touching--and teary-eyed-- testimonies, and we laughed some more as we revisited forgotten territory.
And yet, the homecoming was not really all about our former, younger selves. None of us have remained exactly the same. We have, in fact, changed in ways that all of us wouldn’t have imagined. The reunion took on some semblance of an Amazing Race pitstop: a breather, a chance to recoup before progressing to the next destination.
When it was time to leave, there were no formal goodbyes. All of us have since learned to live with countless hellos and goodbyes that we no longer observe timelines. What is important is that we know that we will meet again. Next year, perhaps. Or in another 25 years.