A few weeks ago I went to my 20 year school reunion. Aside from the girls I came with and who I have met up with regularly a couple of times a year, I only recognised a handful of people. I didn't even recognise many of their names. Yet there they were in the Year 12 photos, so I know I must have worked and studied alongside them for four years.
Then there were the stuck-up bitches that I did remember - and can report that they still are.
As one friend said, the reunion proved that we had kept up with whom we wanted to keep up with and once every 20 years was more than enough time in regards to the others.
Yet that wasn't quite true either.
I've lost touch with some lovely people who didn't attend the reunion, and there were others I would have been fascinated to see where they have got to. The internet tells me that Catherine got her well deserved doctorate and has worked in several major universities but now she seems to have disappeared off the face of the earth. My friend Preethi has also vanished after moving to LA with her husband and doing a fellowship at UCLA. And what of those girls who would never rock the earth but are the sort of people who ensure it keeps on turning. What are they doing now? Where are Michelle and Sarah now?
Many of the girls had their babies in tow or pictures of young kids on hand. For the most part , girls in our year partnered later in life and had children in their late 20s and 30s.
I was very disappointed to learn that the school brain - we were all smart but she was on another planet compared to the rest of us and was the person we all thought would win a Nobel Prize and change the world - who did attend the reunion, was now working in HR. What a waste of her talents. Yet another girl who I had always dismissed as being very silly had clearly found her feet and was in a job managing a department of 70 people!
The most tragic stories belong to a former classmate who committed suicide a couple of years after graduation, and one who had ad either a stroke or some kind of acquired brain injury and was now confined to a wheelchair.
Most of us, however, had muddled through life with some degree of success in academia, careers and/or family. We didn't all achieve what we had set out to do - but most of us have had a pretty interesting journey along the way.