Time is galloping by!

May 2024 is now practically history . . . and April is long gone. Looking back, the 27th of last month was a red-letter day for me.

 

On that date I re-connected with some friends I had seen every day in high school decades ago in Elizabethtown, PA. It was a surreal experience, seeing folks, some now seemingly wearing gray/white wigs. Others had sprouted beards or mustaches. All, including me, had wrinkles non-existent during our teenage years. But there were plenty of wide smiles and big hugs!

 

 

The banquet hall was filled with happy sounds, friends catching up with each other’s lives. We enjoyed a buffet meal together after we paid homage to deceased class members. A display table showcased the brilliant art work of award-winning water colorist Ann Vasilik, whom we knew back in school days as Ruth Ann Risser.

 

 

Another classmate, Bill Good, used his calligraphic skills to re-write the thumbnail sketches describing each of us as graduates in the 1959 EAHS yearbook. I got to display both of my memoirs.

Another highlight for me was meeting up with Betty Hill Johnson, a fellow student in the academic track who now lives in Connecticut.

     

She bought both of my books and later sent me a very neat note.

         

Authors treasure notes like this because they are rare. Besides, they represent one reader’s strong connection to a writer’s personal story.

 

I discovered while creating the bereavement video nearly fifty of our 113 classmates had died.

 


 

I traveled solo on Delta to Pennsylvania for the first time on this trip. With tight connections in Atlanta, I was relieved when the plane flew over the Susquehanna River to touch down finally at the Harrisburg International Airport.

 

 

Traveling alone comes with challenges. On both legs of my journey I did not hesitate to ask for help hefting my suitcases from the carousel. Fortunately, helpful people are everywhere. Also, older Pennsylvania homes often have long, steep staircases. My Florida legs, used to one-story home designs, had to get used to stairs with twenty or more treads.

My classmates and I are all elderly. Future face-to-face gatherings of this scope may be few and far between. I have to say, though, I’m glad I made the effort to attend and renew long-time connections. As Oliver Wendell Holmes has said, “To be 70 years young is sometimes far more cheerful and hopeful than to be 40 years old.“

 


Has this trip sparked memories of school days or other milestones in your life?

Do you usually travel alone or with others on trips?