I got the I/M the day before. "Clif's in town. We should do lunch tomorrow."
I'm not one to pass up a chance to get together, especially when an out-of-state friend is in town. I responded as soon as I got the message.
The next day noon arrived and we gathered at a small eatery on the corner of State and Main where I live. The original three became five and for the first time in decades five of us sat together and spent time eating and catching up.
You know (and I'm talking to you youngsters out there...) when you go to a restaurant and a group of old geezers take the table next to you and they all begin talking and laughing and chatting about the good ol' days?
Yeah, that was basically us, but without any youngsters to annoy.
It's hard to explain just how wonderful it was to sit and hear how the lives of each one of us have turned out so far. Those many years ago I leaned on these men, relied on them to help get me through my high school years and all that that entails. We talked about our families, children, and in one case, grandchildren. We shared and enjoyed each other's company.
I looked at each one as they spoke and remembered high school and post-high school life. One-by-one we found spouses (we're skewing the statistics--no divorces...), had children, earned degrees, began careers. Two live near where we grew up, two live in-state but away from home, and one lives in the Northwest. Yet, there's a connection that will forever bind us like brothers. We could have talked about the past, but we didn't. We focused on what we're doing now.
Time came to go and we each went our separate ways. I'd like to think we'll make this an annual thing. And we might. Promises made after a great meal and conversation fade when life returns and envelopes our schedules. I had an amazing time catching up and I'm so blessed to call these great men friends. Until next time.