Olly:I now know that if all else fails…..at least I’m in with a chance of being a Hebron Ambassador!
Having had very little communication with old friends and certainly the school it’s odd, in my eyes probably others too, that I would attend two reunions within 3 months in India and London. Having previously attended the London reunions when the owner of Cobra beer, an ex Hebron student, was sponsoring the events supplying free food and importantly, free alcohol, it was strange to visit with no freebies and set in a church rather than a swanky restaurant.
But of course this is not the driving motivation to attend these events; it’s all about catching up with old friends. In fact some I hadn’t seen since the day I’d left- 9 years ago.
I was asked to give a quick speech about the reunion in India, covering the main changes from when I was at school to my recent visit. I spoke about the grass on the ‘titch pitch’, how couples were certainly closer than 6 inches, the shocking sight of seeing students dance and the Christmas banquet fit for kings. Fran attended again, she must be getting sick of hearing about cheese toast, prep, football games and random names and local slang that get thrown around at a furious pace when I talk to old friends as though we don’t want to leave a memory untold. It won’t be long until she knows enough about Hebron to pass as a ex student.
You always want to return to reunions with a collection of long stories about how much you’ve done since you’ve left school. Maybe it’s just me but when I was at school I thought by this time things would be very different to how they are. But at the reunions these types of ‘shallow’ thoughts weren’t even an issue. People were happy to see each other again, even if someone had achieved huge wealth or great status, they were not important during our time together. We were more interested in ‘do you remember when we…’ and stories of the funny things we did and the rules Hebron implemented.
I’m always reluctant to go to reunions, maybe it’s the stigma attached but it always guarantees a lot of laughs and fond memories. It’s the fun of catching up with people you were sharing every day of your life with at the time. It’s about picking up where you left off after nine years. And it’s about being reminded that after so long and often little contact you have such close friends dotted around the world.