Head First: Thomas Wolfe was wrong...

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Thomas Wolfe was wrong...

...you can, indeed, go home. In this instance, home is 20 years ago and halfway across the country. While some may have been concerned that my expectations for this weekend were far too high, and that I might be headed into a reality version of The Big Chill, such was not the case (although I would have been flattered if Mary Kay Place had showed up and asked me to father her child).

The weekend exceeded my wildest expectations. I'm still flying kind of high from it. Perhaps I'll try to talk about it later. Perhaps it's more than I'm capable of articulating. At any rate it's going to take some time to process it all. A couple pix:


Jeff, my best friend for 24 years.




When we left college, Bruce Garrison (this guy's the real deal) went to England and started Searchlight, a missions organization that provides training and literature to local Churches in many countries. They're doing good stuff, including helping to provide wells, food, clothing, education and healthcare for a group of famine stricken villages in Malawi. Searchlight isn't affiliated with a denomination, and has to make it's own way. I'd consider it a personal favor if you'd support this very worthwhile effort. (Damn, when did my forehead get so big?)




One of the many highlights of the weekend came on Saturday morning, when Bruce baptized Jeff's two children, Joel and Taylor. It was a powerful time, rich with meaning, as our relationships have now extended to another generation. I'm getting choked up just thinking about it.


When I think about these friends, I sometimes wonder, how commonplace is this type of deep friendship? I hope it's not rare. I hope a great many people know this kind of love. For me, it gives eternity a purpose.

7 comments:

Steve said...

My 20th HS reunion was very surreal. It was weird seeing people sort of "come back from the dead" if you know what I mean.

When you haven't seen people in 20 years and then they walk into a room, it is a strange experience.

I was also on a high that weekend and for a couple of weeks afterwards. Glad you enjoyed yourself.

ninjanun said...

I hope it's not rare.

It's rare. (sigh). Or maybe I'm just a jerk who pushes people away because I'm terrible about staying in touch.


I'm glad you had fun. In my case, I can't go home again. Both my parents and grandparents sold the homes they had lived in for over 23 and 50 years, respectively, and moved shortly after I graduated from college.

Zeke said...

Hey, ten points for the obscure Big Chill reference.

I didn't go to my 20-year high school reunion. Sad fact is, I had a torrid, explosive affair with the class valedictorian coming out of the 10th reunion and I was ashamed to show my face at the 20th. Ten. Years. Later.

I just realized how sad that is...

Kc said...

It's good to hear such a wonderful report and especially the news of the Baptism. It must have been one of the greatest blessings to be able to share in that. I do suspect those relationships are rare in the world and likely only found among believers.

Ted Burke said...

You can indeed go home again, as I've done it constantly since from Detroit to San Diego thirty years ago. But you mean to cite Thomas Wolfe in your title, and not Norman Mailer. Wolfe (Thomas, not Tom) wrote a grand novel called
You Can't Go Home Again, and I suspect that is what you were thinking of.

dorsey said...

"It takes a big man to admit when he's wrong. I, however, am not a big man...you're fired."

I wish I could remember what movie that's from.

Ted, you're absolutely right. It WAS Thomas Wolfe. Mailer wrote "The Naked and the Dead" and "Tough Guys Don't Dance." I apologize for the brain-fart, and have renamed the post accordingly.

(of course, Norman Mailer could still be wrong...)

;-)

Ted Burke said...

of course, Norman Mailer could still be wrong...

Of course. But that's what keeps him interesting.