A Great 50th Class Reunion
Trip Start Apr 29, 2010
26Trip End Nov 30, 2010
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And, in case you did not read the previous chapters of my Travel Pod, I had spent the last seven months in Bakersfield, CA and after a couple more brief visits with my grown children, and their children, in SoCal, I flew out from LAX.
Also, if you are an Alumni, you probably have a list of all the classmates' full names, however, due to limited space, I have needed to use mostly only first names for this report.
I took Jet Blue's red-eye flight Thursday night 4/29 from Los Angeles to Boston, which unfortunately, was jammed packed, so I didn't get any rest during the flight. Anyway, I picked up my Hertz rent-a-car and drove the two plus hours to Waterbury.
That evening, several of our classmates, and a few spouses, too, gathered in the hotel
When we were students, the school was St. Margaret's School for Girls (founded in 1865 as the Collegiate Institute for Young Ladies and sometime later changed to St. Margaret's) and it had a total of 180 high school students, 80 of which, were boarders. Then in 1972, St. Margaret's joined with The McTernan School for Boys (founded in 1912) and became a co-ed day school with no more boarders. In 2005 St. Margaret's-McTernan changed it's name to Chase Collegiate School to honor the Chase Family, who helped found both schools and to reflect the school's high academic standards. Of course, most of us still refer to it as St. Mags or SMS.
I had not been back to the school in 50 years and I was sort of surprised how much it still looked the same, while at the same time appreciated all the new buildings and other changes. I think the one major thing that was still the same, and that we all loved, was the back veranda covered with the beautiful Wisteria, which was in full bloom.
Soon it was time for us to go into the dining room for lunch. At sometime in the past, the dining room was doubled in size and a large buffet was installed (in our day, the food was served family style at each round table of about 10 students, plus a teacher).
We had a very good turnout for our class... 20 classmates, plus 7 spouses... out of the 42 of us still living (6 are deceased and 3 have lost contact). Lunch was delicious and awards and speeches were well deserved and interesting.
One of the awards, was given to someone special to me, Tara Sharma Upreti, for her remarkable career acheivements. She came all the way from Nepal and we were friends during our time at school back then.
After lunch, we wandered around the main building, now called St. Margaret's Hall, exploring what used to be Miss Fairbanks' (our Head Mistress) suite, as well as, our bedrooms, bathrooms and infirmary, etc.
After 50 years, some of us had a hard time remembering who we each roomed with and where our rooms were located for each year. There were only 12 of us boarding that first year as Freshmen. Margie Mooney Hodges was my roommate that year, Nancy Tolman Stass was my Sophomore roommate and Mary Anne Paolillo Dickinson was my Junior year roommate. Unfortunately, Mary Anne is deceased and Nancy couldn't attend the Reunion due to her husband's bad health and a recent fall. I didn't attend my Senior year there due to my own bad health at that time.
Later there was a Cocktail Party in one of the modern new buildings located beyond the pond and what used to be the Senior House.
Soon it was time for our class to gather on the veranda before dinner.
Our Class Dinner was held in the Library (where we used to be able to watch the occasional TV show). It was a great evening of good food and lots of conversation and passing around photos, both snapshots from our school days and of each of our familes.
What a great way to finish a very full day, with beautiful weather, and a very successful Reunion.
Sunday morning, again several of us gathered for breakfast and a final farewell to a really fun weekend.