We need those Friendship Warriors to organize socials or reunions.

Back Row: Peter and Sharon.
Centre Row: Ian, Brian, Avril, Cheryl, Vincent, Sybil, Richard.
Front Row: Judy and Kenny

I suppose you also have a friend or couple that will help to nurture friendships so that people don't lose contact. Our friends, Avril and Vincent are the Friendship Warriors. Their DNA is wired to connect old classmates or friends of yesteryear.  Be warned though; anything can spark off a social or a reunion for these Friendship Warriors.

As life would have it, Avril bumped into Ian, one of our classmates of yesteryear.  Ian, our  then classmate since primary school, returned to our South African shores to attend his father's funeral. Ian has exchanged his South African roots for snowy, Canadian ones. Ian probably enquired about the rest of us. Before he knew what hit him, Avril and Vincent volunteered to get the gang together before our dear friend disappeared north again.

Facebook buzzed, friends were hunted down and the reunion was going to be held on the banks of Zandvlei on a chilly, drizzly Saturday. If you were one part of the Facebook chat group, you had a good idea of who to expect at the Reunion. If you forgot what your classmates look like, their Facebook profile picture helped to dispel any confusion. That's if you didn't have a classmate like Sybil. You see, as a classmate Sybil was a brown-haired lass, her Facebook profile shows a redhead and when she pitched at Zandvlei, she sported a blonde look.

From left: Judy, Ian, Sybil, John and Cheryl

Ian, the honoured guest - made a dramatic late appearance - armed with sorbet on a typical winter's day in Cape Town.  I reasoned that when temperatures are above freezing point, those in the north may think there is a heatwave.  Many moons ago, Ian was one of my grandmother's neighbours.  Ian was one of those irritating little children who used to call my grandmother, Ouma Frikkadel. Now this same young man talked about living in a condo along a green belt and waxed lyrical about how he takes long walks trudging in the snow, meditating about life.  And sharing a 5 litre sorbet with his buddies.

Then there are people like Sybil who gives new meaning to the saying, "A blast from the past."

Sybil's photographic memory of classroom antics and classmates long forgotten catapulted us into the  bygone era as if we were still stuck there. When we arrived at Zandvlei, Sybil who is a committed Banting follower, swore by her ABC. As time progressed and we found ourselves flying back into Standard 6 and then dropped into Standard 8 with all its extra-curricular classroom activities, Sybil had put Tim Noakes on hold and had seamlessly switched to a more balanced diet of XYZ.

These reunions also become confessional booths of weird and wacko things.

We had a hard time believing that Peter was such an insecure person who envied the more flamboyant ones like Richard and Vincent. This is the same Peter who insisted on talking about the poem, Snake by D.H. Lawrence for every single Prepared Oral in English class.  He would get stuck on his opening lines" There was this snake that came to a water trough. Now this snake came up to the water trough" like a bad rap song. By the third repetition, our Greek English teacher, was ready to shatter a dinner service on Peter who had by then succeeded in disrupting the entire class.

There was a good spread of personalities to keep the energies flowing and the conversations varied. Richard is still the same flambouyant, health-conscious character, Judy still devours books for breakfast, lunch and supper and the others have retained their quirkiness although decades have passed.

The afternoon drifted along beautifully. Long after the sun had set on the Zandvlei wetlands, we were ready to wrap up this enjoyable moment. Kenny who lives off the grid, summed up how we need to view all the moments we experience.

Kenny and I

"Have no expectations," said Kenny. " When you have no expectations, you have no disappointments.  Even if people promised you something and they don't honour their word, you should still have no expectations. Live your life."


Create your own moments, add your own spice and take time to smell the flowers.


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