Rattlers have that special feeling

By Lnn Moncus

By the time this is published, we will be in the midst of Rattler Reunion and will be having a great time visiting with people of all ages who attended school here and continue to return each year to celebrate our school years.

We know that the Class of ’77 will have done all possible to make sure that everyone is welcome and that we are all having fun as only Rattlers can have.

During the week, we have been busy greeting returning Rattlers and catching up on the news from the last time we met, whether last year or 50 years ago. At every turn we see someone who has come home for a few days of remembering and story telling. Those of us who live here look forward to meeting and greeting as many friends as we can see. Some of us can certainly remember how excited we were to come home for Rattler Reunion because we just needed that yearly contract with friends and relatives.

Although we lived elsewhere, we never forgot where home was, and we find that those who have been gone for long periods of time have that same feeling and think of Tucumcari as home no matter where they have lived in the world.

Place is very important to some of us. No matter from which direction we arrive, we get eye strain while looking for the first sighting of Tucumcari Mountain as that is our main signal that we are nearing home. Many can tell you exactly what mile marker is the first one from which they can see the mountain.

We may even see a few rather dim lights on it at night, but we recall the thrill of arriving at night and of seeing the beacon for many miles. It just seemed to beckon us home and we followed that light very eagerly.

Few people from elsewhere can believe that we have such a large annual gathering and that it has been going on for so long. They are also amazed that former teachers return from various distant places to spend time with their former students and to participate in all activities.

They don’t seem to realize that the teachers were very important to our entire community and that they seemed to be as much a part of the community as were the students.

Some of us are even fortunate enough to attend as both former students and former teachers. I know how proud I am of former students and how much I enjoy seeing them again while learning what wonderful people they have become in their later years.

After all, it has been 45 years since I taught here and 55 years since I graduated from THS. As a result, I sometimes have a few problems remembering whether I was in class with someone or whether I taught them.

Once we settle into visiting, the mind begins to focus so I can separate students from classmates. Also being privileged to know people from all the classes who graduated from THS gives a lot of us a very special feeling.

Actually, we are very privileged to live in Quay County in which all schools have all school reunions. We wouldn’t have many people returning were our reunions devoted to one of two classes only.

We also have the community reunions which continue to center around the schools that once peppered our area.
Obviously, friendship has played a major part in our lives.

Let’s just enjoy every minute together and regale each other with stories of our youth. “Hail to the Rattlers!”