Twenty years had gone by and yet some of us still looked (basically) the same. Despite the wear and tear, the general type face was still there. For those that it wasn’t …it just wasn’t. Even for them, if you looked closer, peered into their face or better yet listened (that’s one thing that does not change…the voice!), you’d figure out the person that was standing yonder in the corner talking. A few people were surprised when their name (along with their surname too!) popped out with a huge grin on my part! Twas a real blast from the past and boy was it fun! Introductions to spouses were taken care of and of course catching up was the order of the day.
Those that were outgoing, exuberant, reserved, quiet, life of the party were still that…nothing ‘had really changed’. Of course we all knew that this was not so, but the basic fabric on which the changes had been built was still recognisable and so you could figure out (using twenty dusty years of experience) how the gathering would turn out.
Along with amusement and laughter came a few encounters (blunders more like), where good friends of bygone years were given the cursory greeting by someone that (seemingly) did not know them! A few whispers (into the clueless party’s ears of course) went some ways in correcting the situation and certainly elicited more chuckles and a whole lot of teasing too.
A few revelations of past (mysterious) activities and other things were explained by some of the perpetrators. Some regrets not realised by young hearts were also finally aired for all and sundry. Old school music that captured those poignant moments of youth blared from the speakers; the dance steps that accompanied the music were re-enacted by the not-so-young that could still put those skills on display. Hopefully, the show-offs did not pay too heavily for their nostalgia the next day! The night riders, raiders, crawlers and daredevils made their debut as the evening matured.
In all, twenty years of teachers, boarding school, learning, experiences and friendships were remembered and shared that fateful night. Fun, laughter, teasing, dancing and re-connections took place. Some people that had not seen each other since the last day of secondary school, saw, chatted and shared a few hours, once more savouring the memories.
Thus, with deep shock I learned (via face book) of the passage of one of our own. ‘No!’ I thought it couldn’t be! I had only just seen him two months ago! This was one person that I had not seen hide nor hair of since that last day of school twenty years ago. The word had gone out about the re-union and he made it. As usual Sam had fun, was fun to be around and the party was the better for his attendance. So the fact that he had recently passed on was quite difficult to grasp, the last memory of him was one of cheer and life!
Life is transient, we understand this but it’s really hard to lose someone that’s precious to us in one way or the other. To his set of comrades from secondary school, Samuel Kwajafa will always be remembered as a beloved classmate, friend and person of influence without whom our lives would not have been quite the same. We pray God’s comfort, provision and compassion on his family and beloved at this period and ask that God Almighty give them the fortitude to bear this loss. Adieu Sam…rest in peace.