Each year at Thanksgiving I’m reminded to begin the endless search for a journal for the New Year in which to record my brilliant, yet somewhat jaded, reflections. This year I bought a plain ole black book which I think was designed to be an artists sketch book…significant I believe, since I will use it to sketch out the life I’ve been chasing for more than 60 years. (and haven’t yet caught).
No, I won’t be cooking this year even though I will offer a traditional Thanksgiving dinner thanks to Boulder Canyon Kettle Chips. Yes, you read that right. My Nashville son, William, arrived at our airiport with a complete Thanksgiving dinner in a bag….Kettle Chip bags.
At 4 a.m. I was awakened by the sound of laughing as early morning walkers strolled by my house. A pang of remorse stabbed me when I realized how long it has been since I took myself on a walk.
A sort of melancholy had moved into my head since my children left and Thanksgiving is officially over at my place. Yesterday was truly Black Friday for me and there was no shopping involved.
Picture it. Several hundred of your best friends from a half century ago are gathered at your high school hangout to relive the best times of your life and pay tribute to one special classmate who left us much to soon.
Lifetime friends from West Point High School had the time of their lives last night when they danced to the very same dance band they did 50 years ago. No one broke a hip so far as I know and we juked on into the the wee hours (10 p.m. at least).
Then we moved the party to the Hampton Inn and ordered Pizza. Does anything ever change very much if you grew up in West Point, Mississippi? (Pictured above from left are longtime friends Carole Higgins Morton, Marie Portera, Norma Clark Atkins, Becky Cooper Angle, Elizabeth Randle Bounds, Beth Hooker Herron, and Linda Hazlewood.)
Above members of the Torquays include Scott Murrah, Tinker Lautar, Jeff Florreich, Bob Marshall, Tom Seagrest, Eugene Bailey, and Susie Marshall. To us, they were better than the Beatles.
Quite possibly, the classes of 65 and 66 had the most fun. Those were very good years.
The occasion had a higher mission – to pay tribute to the late Gary Florreich, our classmate and lead singer for The Torquays, the band which provided the soundtrack of our formative years. Gary died almost exactly a year ago and our gang headed for New Orleans before sundown. Losing one of our own still stings.
Gary’s brother, Jeff, stood in for him last night and the rafters of Teen Town shook just like they did a half century ago. It’s a miracle the building is still standing.
Plans are already underway to met again Memorial Day Weekend if we can stand to wait that long. Special thanks to Bob and Susie Marshall and Tinker Lautar for their work in putting together the time of our lives.