>Back when I first went off to college, an interesting thing used to happen on the day before Thanksgiving. An impromptu high school reunion of sorts would spontaneously break out. Of course, this could be a phenomenon that only occurs in towns of small to medium size.
Since we didn’t have things like email or text messages, once a person left town for college they were usually not heard from until the holidays. Most people couldn’t afford frequent long distance calls. It wasn’t free like on today’s cell phones. You actually had to pay for it by the minute. Plus, you usually had a roommate or two who also had friends back in their home towns and wanted to keep up with them, so the phone rotation was in play as well.
What usually happened is that a person would arrive on Wednesday afternoon and call around and see who was in town. Since we were too young to go to a bar, and a fake ID was too much hassle, we would meet up that evening at the Baker’s Square, Marie Callender’s or other casual dining restaurant.
Inevitably, half of the graduating class would end up in the same place…more likely than not because there weren’t many places available for an underage person to hang out legally (and without your parents finding out).
With only a few months of perspective/distance, most of the same feelings were in place when one saw a classmate wander by. It was a little weird though. Kind of like when you see a teacher outside of school, wandering around Target or the grocery store. Although, I think the emotional jolts helped prepare you for the familial onslaught slated for the following day.