Best. Visit. Home. Ever.

Last weekend was my 20 year high school class reunion. I went into the thing at ease. The people I wanted to see I would see. The people who didn’t give me the time of day all those years of school might change or might not change. It was their loss if they didn’t and my gain if they did.

The reunion was OK. My wife got to meet some classmates. That was great. What was worth the trip needs a little bit of backstory.

Twenty years ago this summer my golf coach threw away his golf clubs. He thought he would never play golf again. He was burned out on coaching and on teaching (English teacher). A most unfortunate event ended his teaching career and besmirched his character. An extended midlife crisis (my words) took place. Things settled down for him a few years ago and he took up golf for the first time in 17 years.

Fast forward to last Saturday. Four golf team members from the Class of 1990 were together again at the course where we once kicked the snot out of most of our conference. The name had changed, but the greenskeeper had returned after an extended absence. The course was in fantastic shape! We though, well, maybe Coach would show, maybe not.

He showed up looking better than he did ten years ago in the early stages of his midlife crisis.

I played an excellent round after not playing for several months. Snaked in a par putt…downhill, sidehill. Chipped in for birdie on the last hole too! We had more fun that humanly allowed!

Lunch at a local restaurant was even better. All of us had grown up to become happy and successful at what we’re doing (two ministers, one dentist, one medical researcher). We grew up too, realizing mistakes and seeing how that built character.

When we were about to depart, my beloved coach began to choke up. He would later write me telling how he needed this day more than anything. That night would be his 45th high school class reunion…the first reunion he has ever attended. The golf, the lunch, and the conversation were needed. It brought closure, but also opened doors to the future.

I’ve caught the golf bug again. I put my clubs down for the most part when our first child was born. When we moved up to Momence, my desire for the game was almost gone. I’d rather bowl than golf. That’s changed as of last weekend. Now I’m looking for some golf buddies here. I have a few church members that play. I’m hoping to organize an outing before cold weather comes.

I don’t look forward to going home. Too many bad memories of school and other stuff. This was a great visit home. I was privileged to preach at my home congregation. I saw a lot of people I hadn’t seen in a long time. Mom and Dad are fine and so is my family back home. Life is good for them, as it is for me.

Don’t close the door entirely on the past. You never know what surprises might lurk around the corner. What a pleasant surprise to see my old coach get his life back together again. What joy it was to be out on the course with four old friends. It was as if it was the fall of 1989 all over again. We picked up where we left off.

If I could save time in a bottle, I’d save last weekend. It was a keeper.

– KT


2 Responses to “Best. Visit. Home. Ever.”

  1. very happy for you! and your coach too! still not sure what we will be doing about vacation, might be altering the timing to get up there a little bit. (partly because you will probably be extremely busy welcoming your third when we were originally to come up.) will let you know.

  2. I love this post. We have not had a reunion since my 10 year back in 93 and I think that’s a shame. It’s hard to go home though, I agree. Things change, for better or for worse. oddly enough my classmates and I have met again on facebook. It’s interesting to me to see how our lives have gone these 27 years.

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