Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Yes, I Know What Day It Is …

Of course, I know today is the twelfth anniversary of one of the most horrific days in American history; however, this post is not about September 11, 2001. What it is about is a celebration of the fortieth class reunion of my fellow classmates in Worthington, Minnesota. I say my fellow classmates because I never graduated with them. After my accident, I spent the first seven and one-half months in three different institutions, came home and quickly developed my first pressure sore which led to six months in bed and three surgeries. That followed into their senior year when I tried to go back to take classes for three weeks, but the sore kept me in bed and I never graduated with the class.

The spring of 1973 when my classmates were finishing their high school education, I had started school at Worthington State Junior College. Technically, I am a tenth grade dropout! However, I do have a college degree.

They timed our reunion events around the annual celebration in Worthington known as King Turkey Day! Friday will start out with a golf event for those that choose to participate in the morning, followed by a tour of the newly renovated high school. After that, it is off to the new Worthington Convention Center for an evening of reminiscing, exaggerating old stories, seeing friends I have not seen for many years, meeting spouses, sharing stories of children and grandchildren, showing pictures on people's smart phones and just having a good time. I am extremely excited and looking forward to that night, Friday the 13th!

Saturday will bring the annual all-you-can-eat free pancake breakfast, a small art fair, a midway, a 5K walk and a 10K run which grows every year. Following the race, will be the featured speaker who will have an incredible speech to follow since yours truly was last year's speaker! I wrote about it in a post last year. You may read that post by clicking here.

That is followed by the annual race of the turkeys between Ruby Begonia from Cuero, Texas and Worthington's own Paycheck. Last year, they even made me kiss Worthington's turkey. I never saw the picture, but I have been told it made the local paper.

Our class is having a hay wagon for us to ride on in the parade. If we can figure out a way of getting me onto it, I will ride in the parade for the second straight year.

Following the parade will be many people from all walks of life who will want to talk with me. That is a part I truly love! Not that the rest of the events are not fun, but as happens every time I am around anyone who remembers me, from my accident or all of the events that followed forty-two years ago they will want to tell me stories of their recollections of that time.

Much of my book, comments on my blog and Facebook posts are filled with people's recollections of that time so many years ago. I have always said, "It's amazing to me how an instant in time can affect so many people's lives!"

People still tell me it feels like my accident happened yesterday! I feel that oftentimes too! I have mentioned this before how I cannot believe how fast life travels. This weekend will be another reminder of that phenomenon.

That being said, my personal care attendant, Robert, and I will leave tomorrow afternoon for four days of storytelling experiences. I am looking forward to it. Bet you cannot guess what my next post will be about?

As always, I look forward to your comments.




Cindy Hudson Spartz said...

Mike-Enjoy your trip home and all the memories that will be part of the weekend. No matter how far we go and how long we are gone, Worthington will remain home in our hearts always. I will be there in spirit! Turkey Days was always right up there with Christmas and Halloween in my childhood list of "My Favorite Days". Cindy (Hudson) Spartz

Colleen m pautrick said...

Have a fantastic time Michael. I know how much you enjoy renewing old friendships --it does seem like yesterday often.......

Earl Hipp said...

I hear the joy of anticipation in your writing. Happy for you. You are indeed most alive when you're engaged with people, telling and listening to stories, and in a crowd.

Can't get the image of you kissing the turkey out of my head though. I want that picture!

Rock on my friend.

maren overgaard said...

have a safe, wonderful trip! lifelong friendships are so special!