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year 11 leavers pic class of 88-93It was Christmas, the cocktails were flowing between a group of four friends, two of which went to school together, and always remained friends.

On our probably tenth trip to the ladies, oh  come on give me a break! FOUR KIDS AND LOTS OF COCKTAILS OK!! We spy a familiar face, a fellow school friend in a similar state to us! Chat goes back to school as it inevitably would, then those fateful words are uttered…ITS 20 YEARS SINCE WE LEFT, WOULDNT IT BE GREAT TO HAVE A REUNION!

Now, none of the three of us are taking responsibility for utterance of the words, but there it was, out there in the ether.

Christmas is done, my friend and I meet for a regular coffee and chat session, the word REUNION hangs in the air, flashing its school disco balls in our faces until we can ignore it no more!

So there it was decided, it had fallen upon us to put this reunion together. That night was brilliant, trying to put names to faces on our leaving school year photo. And with much help from the book of face, we start putting a list together and numerous friend requests to old school friends. Yes we stalked your friends pages to try to complete the year!

slowly the requests came back, some with ‘thank you, but who are you?!’ my friend being unrecognisable from our school days.

We then put it out there, who fancied it? to our surprise quite a few thought it was a great idea and a venue was sourced, date suggested and booked. No turning back now, we were doing this!

WHAT! THIS WASNT MEANT TO HAPPEN, OH GOD, IVE GOT TO DO THIS, BASTARD COCKTAILS!

We drag another friend in, to help us with decoration, and moral support, and an amazing job she did as well.

Then, the week before arrives a lot damn quicker than it was meant too!

Shopping, that’s what was needed! Besty and I head for the shops new dresses are needed. Simple objective, they’ve got to be understated, classy and killer! You know what im talking about!! If we’re doing this im going in looking fab! isn’t it one of the biggest fear of these things that people’s first thought is, man you didn’t age well! well for me any ways, self-esteem at school wasnt my best point, I had major body image issues, the beginnings of an eating disorder and emotional issues most counselors would have had a field day with.

School wasnt easy, for Fuck sake I was ginger, big boobed and buck teeth. I was a walking target!

Now don’t get me wrong, most of my fellow school mates never gave me grief, yes the bullies did, name calling really nothing worse, but at 14 that’s killer and can make your like a misery.

The boys teased me about my boobs, and I would try to keep them inconspicuous! that’s untill the last year, when confidence grew and finally saw them as an asset! 😉 strong friendships were formed and I  finally started to feel a little comfortable with my self, but still the over-riding feeling of awkward swallowed everything else up.

The morning of the Reunion arrives. I wake at 5.30am like a scene out of a horror movie when the lead is brought back from the dead!

Massive gasp of breath, and panic consumes my whole body, heart races, stomach churns, I CANT DO THIS!

NO ONE WILL LIKE ME, DID THEY EVER LIKE ME, IS MY DRESS RIGHT, NO ONE WILL LIKE ME, NO ONE WILL TURN UP, WORSE THEY TURN UP AND BUGGER OFF, AHHHHHHHHHHH!

FUCKING BASTARD COCKTAILS!

I turn to twitter, ( you knew they had to fit in somewhere right!) I tell them my fears, see people on Twitter don’t have to comment and help, it has no impact on their lives, but they do. one lady in particular (MARY) gave such words of confidence and reassurance, it boosted my step. I kept her words with me as I walked in that night and held my head high. The rest of twitter offered to hold my hand all night, I’m glad they did!

Besty and I meet to get our wrinkles filled with super strength polyfiller    make up done, then quick change and away we go.

We get there early as my wonderful husband borrowed a school disco sound system and had spent the past three nights solidly putting together a 6 hour playlist filled with tracks from 88-93. I’m panicking again ,what if it fails, what if they hate the music.. this is too much! he gets it going, the place is superbly decorated in our school colours and we watch the clock hit 7.30…………………………………….

we wait..

Then slowly, they start to arrive. All faces I instantly recognise and the hugging and girly little wails of delight start!!

Now our hometown is a small place and some have remained, two made me giggle as thy gave each other a huge man hug and declared loudly ‘ MAN IVE NOT SEEN YOU SINCE THE CO-OP THIS AFTERNOON’

Brilliance, the humour is flowing, more people arrive it was wonderful to watch old groups of friends regroup into their old circles and immediately revert back twenty years and acting like over grown teenagers! Just no one having to use siblings fake ID this time!

Everyone was so friendly, no hostility in the room at all. reminiscing flows, stories shared. one guy I went to primary school with as well enjoyed telling my hubby how at the age of 6 or 7 I would pinch his bum, then playfully hit him round the face!!! Good to see I’ve not changed much!

Girls I  was nervous of seeing, came up and hugged and delighted in the chance of catching up, I was gob smacked to be honest. I thought I wasnt that liked,  (I never wanted to be an it girl, way too much pressure) but to find out  you were thought of nicely and a good friend put a lot of demons to rest for me. I was the archetype angst ridden teenager, who’s thoughts were deep and took myself way to seriously!!

I was relieved to hear throughout the night, that nearly everyone had felt the same way, some had hidden in the bar downstairs and downed some dutch courage whilst they deliberated the choice to come upstairs and meet us all, I’m so glad they did.To watch people’s faces light up when special people from their school days turned up was worth every moment of stress.

Amazing we make it to the end of the night, then the best thing, some of the local guys are sorting taxis to take everybody down to the only club in town, lets keep this party going! I was chuffed to bits they stayed the whole night! so who was i to say no! and the night carried on, more drinks flowed, we stuck to a sticky floor, as the laughs never stopped, memories shared and all that was missing was getting mates to ask each other out!!! we could have been at he school disco 20 years ago, just a little more booze that’s all, and a lot less snogging in the toilets!!! x

So yeah, It was fantastic, I’ve got to congratulate my best friend Sue on her

tireless hard work and for wearing those kitten heels!! Julie you did an amazing job with the decorations and everyone else, YOU made the night what it was. Same time next year??!!!! xxxx

Class of 88-93 twenty years ongreat friends

 

So readers, have you got a reunion story to tell, do you fear them like i did! Tell Jo! xx

Much love as always Jo xxx

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