May 2017 Volume 14

Purple Rain and the Reunion

Patrick “Pacho” Brown
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I looked up in the sky. It was sunny and bright. Not a rain cloud to be seen. Would it rain?

Today was going to be a really special day in my life, our lives. Based on the pre-union get-together, I said to myself that anyone who has the slightest resemblance to one of my high school friends would be assumed to be an actual friend – the passage of time can do so much to alter one's appearance so we should anticipate that we will not be able to recognize all of our classmates..

It was now night when we left the pre-reunion get-together. Some of us decided to part ways while others moved the lyme to another spot under the trees of Four Seasons so we could continue our long, long night with too much drinks, laughter and dizzy eyes. "Alla, pass another glass of that special whisky. Please!"

It was 11:45am when I arrived at Clovelly Park. Our reunion was set at high Noon.

Yes, I had met some of my classmates and friends the evening before at the pre-reunion event at Island Grill but there were many I had not met.

As I walked in I saw Dikko and Joe Ried. What a greeting we had. High fives, low fives, fist bumps, embraces and welcomes to all purple brothers. The others came soon after and frequently - Alla Clarke with khaki shirt and short pants, Gilla with bright purple shirt, Kevin and Fitzy with their cameras, Douce, G-Walks, & Bucky, were present; Dennis had already set up and was running the video on all of us. Rusty , Cranky, Jakko, Hamlin, Pelo Tommo, Angel, Bugsie, Birdman, Dudley, Barry, Michael, Warren, Beenie, PJ and many others came. Gabba, Finger, Freddie, Cheeko, Lassie and others followed. Someone whispered to me, 'who is that?' I cannot remember his name. All of a sudden I realized I was not alone, some folks I did not recognize initially on sight but the brain is a good memory box. We had to check our files quickly to avoid embarrassment. What an august group of various professionals, most were engineers and doctors.

We had a good old time, chatting and reminiscing, laughing, remembering old stories of our school days, remembering teachers, events, etc. I looked up again, no rain, no purple rain. We chatted on and on, checked class rooms where we were taught. Every step we made at school became reminded as our revered ground. So much have we remembered in the hours we chatted away, so much have we forgotten until reminded, so much we learned, so many incomplete stories were given closure.

Then we had the roll call, 5 minutes speeches for all present and a poem from Rusty, and acknowledgements for those absent and for those who left us. The speeches were filled with fond memories. Some stories were forgotten, some we were hearing for the first, some secrets and mysteries were solved there and then.

All good things must come to an end. We took pictures and videos of those present as a keepsake as some started to leave and the evening became long. We collected financial donations for KC. Some wives were present, some friends were present. We were all filled with pride, passion and memories. Someone said, 'let's do it again soon!' Some others said 'yes, yes!' Some said 'next year', some said 'in 4 years'.

I was overcome with emotions. I really, really loved the event and meeting my friends after 41 years after 6th form. Some were still below 60 and a few were over 60. Some shouted let us meet before too long as some more of us will not be around. We laughed and joked.

I was getting dark. Tomorrow was the church service and we had promised to look for the graves of the Bishop & Dougs to honour our great leaders. Then we would have our luncheon and say goodbyes. Many came from overseas for this special occasion. We knew this was a special event. We all knew it would be difficult to re-assemble again but we committed to soon. I remembered in planning the event some had questioned why would we have a reunion only of 'A' streamers of Classes '67 to '74 without the rest of students in the full year cohort? I had said this was for the guys who shared a special experience and journey together from 1A to 6A and we should have a reunion for the full year at another time.

This reunion event took place 24,25,26 July2015

Bishop Percival Gibson – Our Founder 'The Bishop'

Douglas Forrest – our beloved Head Master 'The Dougs'

I looked up once again. It was now night while we lymed. It was still a beautiful day and night. There still was no rain. Not a drop of purple rain only purple fun.

The Luncheon

Patrick 'Pacho' Brown (67-74)

Fortis Forever

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