The ladies followed each other in a caravan to Greenwich, met up at a private cocktail party (have you gotten the impression that even the tea drinkers were drinking a lot of tea?), followed by the reunion dinner, and brunch on Sunday. Of the 130 attendees (including significant others), I think almost 100 of us were out on the dance floor at one time or another. We grabbed anyone close to the wooden platform and formed big circles. Didn't have to recognize the person we were dancing with - in fact, probably couldn't! The "oldies" kept our hip replacements gyrating and new knees bending. "Primo" and "secondo" platters of Italian food kept coming and coming and I kept taking and taking. Finally I gave up trying to hold my stomach in. Was so wound up, I didn't sleep a wink all night, and neither did my friend who'd driven down with me. Both husbands decided to stay home (wonder why??).
Here's a list of DON'T RULES, if you plan to enjoy yourself at a 50th reunion. I had lots of help putting together. Here goes!
1. Don't assume you can ignore the questionnaires during the year preceding the blessed event. If you don't respond, nobody will care if you come or not by then.
2. Don't refuse invitations to pre-reunion gatherings. You might not recognize people when you get to the actual reunion (you won't!!).
3. Don't lean in to squint at someone's nametag and photo. You will look like the old fart you are, instead of the hipster who sticks out his hand and asserts, "I'm ______________."
4. Don't ask people if they remember you. You might not like the answer!
5. Don't ask someone you've just met, "Are you wife number two or three?"
6. Don't introduce your second wife as "Mary Two" and attempt to explain that she has the same name as your first wife.
7. Don't answer the question, "How are you?" with, "My last surgery was a total failure."
8. Don't answer the question, "How are things?" with a monologue about your bitter divorce, lack of funds for a vacation in the last five years, and necessity to work till hell freezes over!
9. Don't french-kiss your old boyfriend.
10. Don't put your hand on your old girlfriend's butt.
11. Don't assume the best-looking in the class is still the best-looking.
12. Don't assume the nerds are still the nerds. Or that they are poor.
13. Don't eat garlic bread before dancing.
14. In the event you disregard rule number 11, don't leave your TicTacs at home.
15. Don't ask someone to dance if he/she has a walking stick propped against his/her chair.
16. If you suspect someone had several facelifts, don't stand next to his/her ear, searching for surgical scars.
17. If someone is wearing a hearing aid, don't continue to shout in that ear. Move to the other one, dummy!
18. Don't dance for three hours in a pair of heels you just bought.
19. If you ignore rule #18 and must remove your shoes, don't point out how grotesque your bunions have become.
20. Don't assume that you will look like a dance instructor after a few sippies. It is not a life-altering event, and no-one cares if you make a fool of yourself on the dance floor! Everyone else out there is doing the same thing.
LAUGH TILL YOU CRY, DANCE AS THOUGH NO-ONE'S WATCHING, AND LOVE AS THOUGH YOU'VE NEVER BEEN HURT. That's what our reunion was all about! Any other contributions? Write them under "Comments." Thanks for the memories. Will post following our So. African trip.