Easy to be ourselves around other rattlers

One more Rattler Reunion is now a beautiful memory, and plans are under way for next year’s gathering. Trying to choose a favorite reunion is impossible because each one seems more special than the last. Those of us who are proud to call ourselves Rattlers rarely miss an opportunity to meet and greet friends, classmates, and students.

We owe the Class of 1981 a vote of thanks for organizing many of the events and for being the host class. They certainly did a lot of work and were most gracious as hosts. We also owe the Rattler Alumni Board a big thank you for seeing that registration went so smoothly. They work hard behind the scenes every year to be sure that we have one more successful gathering.

Just seeing so many friends in one place is a major thrill for this Rattler alumna and former teacher. Visiting with people of all ages is always a privilege and makes us aware of just how fortunate we are to have this yearly affair. We always look for the regular attendees and then begin to identify those we haven’t seen in many years. Of course, that identifying can be a little difficult when we haven’t met in 50 or more years. Even trying to focus on the name tags takes some skill, especially as we get older. For some reason, the print seems to become smaller as our vision dims a bit.

Spending quality time with members of the Class of 1952 becomes more special each year. As we looked back over the 59 years since our graduation, we could hardly believe so much time has passed because some of the incidents we were remembering seemed to have happened much more recently. Despite our aging condition, however, we have never lost the ability to laugh with and at each other. That is one group in which we can most definitely be ourselves. Were we to try to be anyone else, someone would give us a good talking to and cause even more laughter.

I have explained that as both a former student and former teacher I have sort of a split personality and am also torn between being with my classmates and with those wonderful students. This year, the Class of 1961 really hit the emotional side of their English teacher by recalling some of the great times we had and by remembering that teacher of so long ago. I spent quite a bit of time with them and enjoyed seeing every one of those “kids” who were in my classes. I cannot begin to thank my students for being so warm and kind. Life really is good in our home town!