11 September 2008

...we're havin' a heat wave...

The scene was Lagniappe’63 the, one of the final production numbers of the show. The whole show had centered around the 25th anniversary of the annual school show (and was actually done a year too soon) and three mad bombers were trying desperately to disrupt the festivities. In this particular scene, an Ann Margaret wannabe took the stage to sing a torrid version of “Tropical Heat Wave”. When the truth was discovered she was encouraged to head west, but her devoted fan club decided that name the new school “Ann Margaret West.”

And that fetching young actress was none other than your fetching Blog-Meister. And that was long ago and far away. Incidentally I borrowed the uniform and actually wore it to several basketball games where my laughable skills earned me the mock title of “cheerleader of the year”.

So, in a couple of weeks I will be heading back to the motherland to another class reunion and a chance to catch up with old friends. After all, who knows how many more of these get-togethers we will all be able to attend. We started with a graduating class of over 1000. Each year the attendance grows a bit smaller, the waistlines grow a bit larger, the hairlines recede a bit more but the comfort level and the warmth seemed to increase. Long buried prejudices or hard feelings no longer muddy the festivities.

Each time I attend, I’m reminded of how fortunate I was to be able to attend a really good school with some really neat people who went on to make us all proud. Many of my classmates achieved incredible notoriety in numerous fields of government, journalism, medicine, literature, science and many others. I wish just one time, everyone would be able to attend-maybe the 50th.

After that I will spend on other week catching up with friends and family in Wisconsin. I have not been back for several years and while I love New Mexico I do miss many of my close friends with whom I have proved to be a terrible correspondent. I will enjoy seeing green grass and autumn leaves and smiling faces. I will also enjoy my brother’s cooking and touring the area to see the new homes and businesses that have popped up.

When I moved to Wisconsin from Chicago in 1977 the area was primarily farmland and lakes. During the next twenty years more and more people moved out of Milwaukee to the country and with them came development. Luxury homes and subdivisions and then the strip malls and big box stores. Most of the development was tasteful and well designed, but still are small town became very congested.

Finally the day dawned when I could no longer stay and in the prophetic words of my high school senior show… I decided to “head west”. Now I’m surrounded by high desert and sunshine, but just above the horizon… my northerly neighbor is planning a subdivision for 140 homes, sigh. C’est la vie.


Wicked Thistle said...

I love your stories. And I am already eagerly awaiting the stories that emerge from your reunion. After all, nobody's more fun than people!

moi said...

This is such a beautifully written post – one of my faves evah. I love your tales of your halcyon school days because they remind me that history is carried inside all of us and we can learn so much simply by listening to our friends.

Jane said...

I didn't know you hailed from WI! I love the Ann Margaret story and wish there were Flip videos back in the day!

I thought NM was beautiful when I visited Santa Fe, but then somebody told me that snakes are everywhere in the summer. I have one phobia and that's it! Now it's on my list of winter-only destinations!

Natalie Dessay rehearsing in Santa Fe 2008

Sempre libra Millenium park 2008

La Sonnambula Finale

Dessay in Santa Fe