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Friday, July 11, 2014

We meet again...

Last Saturday afternoon I went to a reunion of my high school cohort. This year was special as 2014 marks the 50th year since we started Year 8...gasp! Yes 50 years!!! For the last 5 years, we have had a reunion get together every year and I've loved them!





But this year, I wasn't so sure that I wanted to go...I really did feel quite reluctant.

And the reason was simple...I had heard that a particular person (male) would be attending for the first time. This person had managed to be quite nasty to me for 4 of my 5 years at high school...it started in year 9 with him calling me a particularly nasty name which included the taboo, (in my opinion), 'c word'. At other times he would claim that, as I was a friend of his younger brother, (a lovely, polite boy) and that he hated anyone who was a friend of his brother, therefore he hated me. So for 4 years, he gave me 'a hard time' whenever I was unfortunate enough to be near him. Please don't feel sorry for me as I had many friends in high school and this bloke was just an A grade pain in the butt! I believe that he bullied others as well...especially male students who were not 'cool' according to him. But for a while this year all those memories flooded back...



He wasn't at the venue when I first arrived but I kept an eye out...he turned up but I didn't recognise him at first...I think I had to ask another person who he was! lol. I stayed away from him, preferring to talk to other fellow students. I figured that he wouldn't recognise the 63 year old me,so I was 'safe'. 

What I looked like aged 17...

Despite my misgivings about attending the reunion, I was having a wonderful time catching up with old friends.



It was getting close to the time when the reunion would be at an end and I felt this surge of annoyance with myself for 'hiding'...so I walked up to this man, to whom the recent years have not been kind in the physical sense, and said 'hello * ' He needed to check my name badge and then he greeted me like a long lost friend... I couldn't think of anything much to say so I commented that the last time we had met, he was an alderman (it was in the 1980s before the term 'councillor' was introduced) with the Brisbane City Council. He then proceeded to remind me in detail about all the things that he achieved in his council ward during his one term....humble was not a word to spring to mind. And it wasn't long before his conversation showed that he is quite  very racist...so it was time for me to end our 'catch up' conversation. The good news is that he didn't belittle me and that my teenage opinion of him has been vindicated. 


4 comments:

Susan said...

Some people never grow up or change. Best left in past I think.
I too have one of those reunions this year - we meet on anniversaries of our last year (almost everyone sat my school stayed til the end....)and these days we do the five year thing as well as 10 years...in case...so, Novemener - back to Sydney for me.

Marilyn said...

I had a chuckle at your A Grade Pain. I think a lot of us had those kinds of people to deal with, but in my case it was girls, as I wasnt in the cool bunch. Some people just dont change do they.

Vireya said...

I'm impressed that so many of your former classmates are still in touch! I only have contact details for one person I went to high school with, and we email about once a year on our birthdays. I've tried to track down others from time to time, without much luck. Still, I don't look back on my teenage years with any sort of fondness, so I'm probably happier not being reminded of those times.

You looked very smart as a 17-yr-old!

JeanN said...

Maria, it was a lovely afternoon despite his presence. I'm pleased you did come and I'm so impressed you did speak to him. Sounds like my encounter with him when he first arrived was the way he took over each conversation the whole afternoon. Some people just never change! Apart from him we do have a lovely group don't we.