When your past meets the present

It is a hot Saturday evening. Our high temperature today was 107F. Although I did my grocery shopping early this morning when the thermometer read 88, and it was relatively comfortable, I had to make a trip out at the very apex of the heat to put in an appearance at a birthday party for a dear friend. It was then that I remembered why I never had a birthday party. Too. Darn. Hot. It will only be hotter in another week when the calendar turns and I have to admit to being a year older.

But, I will get to claim another year unlike the fellow with whom I went to high school way back in the 60s and whose obituary was in this morning’s paper. Sixty six is too young to have passed on. Henry was always a fun loving kid. I was saddened to see that his life had ended.

When I checked Facebook to see if Henry had a page, I found that he did and that many of his friends were those high school classmates whom I remembered. Henry and his friends were two years older than me so I had watched them from a distance, not a part of their merry-making. His class was the first to graduate from the new high school in town. They were a charmed group of kids. And now, I looked at their photos on Facebook and was shocked at the aged faces looking back at me. Just because 46 years had passed. My mind had them freeze-framed in 1968. Happy kids. Hanging out at school. Laughing. Their whole future in front of them.

But not now. The future has come and gone. The present has gotten in the way of those freeze-framed faces of the past. Henry’s funeral is Monday. I’m thinking about attending. Sitting in the back. Watching the faces.

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7 responses to “When your past meets the present

  1. It’s really hot where you live, Delaine. We had a high yesterday of 74, it was just about perfect. I hear you about seeing friends die too young and then to discover they are your age, it seems really sad. It is strange how we freeze frame people into the past, isn’t it? That’s another thing I like about Facebook, I see people from my past, and they don’t look the same at all.

  2. In high school, there were those “high status” groups ruled by the Queen Bee, and then there were the rest of us. At our 50th reunion I learned that both the Queen and the Super Geek were listed on the “departed” list.. Fifty years ago I would have believed the Queen would live forever. Life has taught me that death is the great equalizer.

  3. My class of 1960 was decimated before the faces grew very old. At least Henry got 66 years.

    • Dianne, your classmates, like mine, were undoubtedly drafted and killed in the Viet Nam War. That event sure changed our generation. When I go to the California Viet Nam memorial in Sacramento I always stop and rub the names of those fellas who I knew who fought and died in those jungles. And I wonder, for what?

  4. Happy Birthday when it comes! Bittersweet memories today, may your old friend rest in peace.

  5. So true, LBJ lied and many boys died unnecessarily.

  6. I don’t do Facebook. Glad you enjoy it. Sorry to hear about your friend’s death.

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