Sunday, August 28, 2011

Back Home in Florida

Well, I had quite an adventure last week. I flew up to Massachusetts to attend my high school class 50th reunion. No, that's not a typo. I graduated in 1961 from Quincy High School in Quincy,MA. this reunion was unusual in scope. I've complained in the past because the reunion ran from 8 to 11 PM on a Saturday night. That's not enough time to speak to all the people you want to. Another thing is the 40th was held in late October and we had snow before the reunion. I requested that the next reunion be between May and September, so we could plan a northern vacation around the reunion. That is what we had planned for this year, but family problems made it preferable to stay home. A smooth Jet Blue flight brought me to Logan Airport, in Boston, where my brother and nephew greeted me at the gate. Since they both work at the airport, they had clearance to get right to the gate as I got off the plane.

Todd Tempesta,my nephew and my ride home.

I was treated like royalty all week. If my sister-in-law, Linda wasn't cooking something great, my niece, Tammy was up to the job. Fantastic meatloaf, pot roast, and steak were on the menu, but the best had to be the dinner of steamed clams and lobster. I do not order lobster out,unless it's lobster thermidor, newburg, or lobster roll. Tammy boiled the lobster and brought me a plate with the lobster all cleaned.

Sister-in-law Linda, checking on what's cooking.

Niece Tammy, working on a batch of stuffed peppers. My mother's best recipe because they are GOOD!!!

It didn't take long for me to miss Jodie, Coco, and Sandy. Fortunately, Tammy now has a dog as does Linda.

This is Harley, mostly Jack Russell Terrier. That should say it all.

Mya, Linda's Maltese. This cutie is as friendly as can be. She's in her normal position, waiting to have her belly rubbed.

Before I get to my reunion, I have a couple of other pictures.

This is Nick, but I've been calling him Patrick for years and it drives him nuts. He's my brother's oldest grandson, plays football and is popular with the girls.

This is Jake! Now he is as quiet as a mouse when Nick is around, because he can't get a word in edgewise, but, when Nick is away, Jake becomes a regular chatterbox.

Off to the reunion. The first function was a barbecue in a gazebo over the Neponset River, which separates Boston from Quincy. First of all, there was no heat or humidity and I felt guilty reveling in the nice weather while Helen was still in Florida. The function lasted from 7 to 11 PM. Although the food was OK, the real joy was chatting with fellow classmates.

This is Judi Spellman (Judith Smollett in high school)

I did not know Judi before the 40th 54union 10 years ago. She and I made contact on and we have been friends since. She has a great personality and Helen and I certainly enjoy her company. She was in Florida some years ago and visited us with another classmate. Judi is also my representative on the reunion committee, so she is the one I complain to, over and over. We get to see Judi each time we breeze through the northeast.

Friday night I met Janice Wynot MacKay who we met at the last reunion. We kept in contact for awhile and then they disappeared. It turns out that they move to Florida and lost their email contacts. Mostly I remember chatting with her husband, Charley, but he was left in Florida. She chatted enough for both of them and kept everyone in stitches all night.

Saturday night was the big to-do. This is what the girls live for, dressing up. I have to confess that I wore a jacket and tie,( and a lot more), but the last time I wore a jacket and tie was the 40th reunion 10 years ago. There's just no call for getting dressed up in Florida. Business casual is a clean T shirt and shorts without paint spots.

Again, the reunion committee did a grand job. We were served a salad, then we approached a food line where were served. Pork tenderloin, sirloin steak, shrimp lo mein, and a lot more! The food was excellent, but again, the greatest thing was seeing old classmates. I was thrilled to see Sandra Schwartz, Patty Ross, and Lois Casagrande, classmates from Miss Ash'es first grade class in 1949/50. At the 40th, we also had Dick Sachetti, but he passed away.

Sunday morning was a brunch back at the Adams Inn. It was a good breakfast, but I was there to visit, and I did. Each day I was one of the first to arrive and the last to leave. I was such an unknown in high school and I'm making up for it now. A great time was had by all, our class president made a little speech and he reminded us that we would never again see all the classmates that were there that night. So far, about 20% of our class has passed away. The rate can only increase in coming years. I thought that this would be my last reunion, but actually, I hope to make it to #55.

Sated with all kinds of food and cookies, I boarded nother Jet Blue for the flight home.

Boston from the air. Note the clouds

Florida clouds.

We had fluffy clouds as in Boston, all the way down to Florida. It seems like the very heavy clouds started right at the Florida line. We were near 34000 feet,but off to our right I could see a large anvil shaped formation that seemed to loom well above us. That's generally a thunder storm.

When I reached the main part of the terminal I spied our friend Barbara looking for me and soon I was greeted by Helen as well. After a quick bite we headed home where I got an awesome greeting from the three dogs.

I wonder if anyone actually read this far. I was back in the groove in a day or two, cutting up my trees and burning the remains.

Whew!!! I'm out of breath!



  1. Good to see you had a great time at your reunion, I was planning on attending our 45th reunion in Scranton, Had never been to any of the previous ones due to work and the 900+ mile drive ,but I thought I better make one before I die. I also had a lady that got my e-mail address from my sister and she was corresponding with me and urging me to come.Well about a month before it was scheduled they had to cancel it because they could not get enough people to reserve the Hall & Hotel. oh well maybe the'll have a 50th in a few years. Bet the doggies went crazy when you got back, I get mobbed even if I take a couple days at the Lake in the camper. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  2. read till the end!..nice recap of your reunion weekend!!!

  3. I read to the end too! Sounds like you had a great time..I went to a very small school, went to my 25th. and figured that was enough. Nothing had changed since high school, same clicks, the people that snubbed you in high school still snubbed you, it was very laughable.
    Especially when I saw how some had really shall we say 'expanded' and I was still the same size as in high school. Small towns are so much diffrent than the big city schools. Well, I'll be waiting patiently for your stories of your 55th.