As our school was pulled down many years ago - probably due to the calibre of student that went there - the headmistress was in constant despair, I seem to remember - we decided to have a reunion to celebrate the fact we had reached a significant birthday, and the fact we are all still alive and have mostly all our marbles, it should be celebrated.
It was quite exhausting trying to track various people down. Many of us have moved abroad, had several husbands, changed our names, decided we want nothing to do with our old school, or the people who went there. But the networking was magnificent, and we had letters from those who couldn't come, emails and phone calls as well, but the majority of our year did turn up, and it was great fun to discover who looked the same - and who didn't. We had drinks, lots of them, in a nice hotel bar, then went into lunch and had more drinks, then coffee, then back into the bar - and yes, you've guessed it, more drinks. Then there was cake and champagne. Photos were hauled out of handbags and laughed over, fingers pointing, who the hell is that? I don't remember, yes, someone on the other side of the room knows who it is, and so on. There were the usual reminiscenses about our days in the torture chamber of our school, and the general consencus was that most of the staff were unqualified old spinsters who had nothing better to do with their days, that only a few should have been allowed to be in charge of young girls, and that if the same sort of things went on in a school today, they would have been sued!!!! 'elf and safety would have had a field-day.
I was reminded that I was always in trouble. Every morning at assembly the cry went up and I was hauled into the headmistresse's study to receive my daily telling off, accept my daily incarceration in the library to learn my daily section of the Bible. I used to know the bit about 'a time to be silent, and a time to speak,' but thankfully have blanked it from my brain.
I was also reminded that I was different, with an odd Aussie accent, which added to my behaviour made me a bit of oddity - but they hadn't realised how lonely I was, how depressed to be shut in that awful place with girls who couldn't understand me, and who I couldn't understand. It was a long time before I began to make some real friends, but it was worth it, for they are still friends today, and it was interesting to hear their take on things.
After cake and champagne, we decided to forego supper before the theatre, and managed to stagger down to the congress theatre to see Voulez Vous, an Abba tribute band. A bit naff, yes, the audience suitably attired in some very strange outfits. but actually it was brilliant, and we were soon up and dancing to the tunes that even the younger generations seem to like. Having worn ourselves out, we then went off to an italian restaurant for supper, got chatted up by the waiters and staggered back to the hotel. I was asleep the minute my head hit the pillow. I had a lovely day, and I hope that if anyone is reading this who was there, feels the same way.