I went back today. I took myself into the city and went back.
Twenty-five years ago, today, I graduated high school. In the back of our yearbook, we put in a little joke -- an invitation to a 25th reunion on June 18 of 2012. At the time 2012 seemed rather remote; it was 25 years in the future, a future rife, no doubt, with flying cars and a wildebeest in every garage. Well, the future was this morning so I figured that I needed to be there or be sorry. I'm the sentimental sort and I needed to have this bit of closure.
I headed into the Heights via the GWB. A short digression. The bridge is now $12 per car and there must have been like 50 cars, maybe more. This happens every day, even when there isn't a reunion. That adds up to (if my math is right) a bajillion or so dollars. That's a lot of money. Also, the people who drive in are horrible drivers. All except me and anyone I happen to know. Horrible, all of you. And in the city, even worse. I saw right turns from left lanes and left turns from right lanes. And those were the ones not driving on the wrong side fo the road to begin with. I made it in and found a great parking spot. I wandered into the building, right past the security guard who didn;t ask me for any ID. Nothing changes...if you ever want to attack the high school building, go, dressed up like a melancholy Jew and, apparently, they'll let you right in.
The building, it seems, has not been cleaned since graduation. Not this year's graduation, but, if the lab is right, graduation 1994. The cereal and milk are evolving to the point that they will be able to clean themselves up soon. The halls are still dumpy and ugly, and the building still has the air of desperate high school boys wishing they were any where else. It was like a home coming if I hated my home.
No one else showed up. I don't know how surprised I am by this, or even if I am surprised at all. Most people aren't in the area. Brian is in Israel, Avi is in Texas, the rest are in denial. It is a work morning, I know. People have lives and who needs to pay $12, fight traffic and elude private security just to go and sit in a grungy room and relive memories from a quarter century ago?
I do. And I'm glad I went.