Perfect Moment Monday: Retrospect

Perfect Moment Monday is about noticing a perfect moment rather than creating one. Perfect moments can be momentous or ordinary or somewhere in between.

We gather once a week to engage in mindfulness about something that is right with our world. Everyone is welcome to join. Details on how to participate are at the bottom of this post, complete with bloggy bling.

Please visit the links of the participants at the bottom.

Here’s a perfect moment from my week. I hope you’ll share yours, too.

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I took a trip on the yellow brick road down memory lane this week.

I returned to my college town in Kansas for a class reunion. This sign above the bar gave me pause, because I realized that people not even born when we graduated can now legally drink alcohol.
Let me say a little about my college. It’s small — there were 104 in my graduating class, and just under 1000 students altogether. It’s tight — after so many years, we alums greeted each other with deep affection. It’s idyllic — I hold thousands of happy memories. SO many memories in only 4 years. And the college is inextricably entwined with the town.

The town has remained at a population of about 3500 over the decades. It’s a farming and artisan community — highly welcoming of the transient student population who are invited to retain a claim on the place.

Each odd-numbered year, the town hosts Svensk Hyllningsfest, a Swedish harvest festival that coincides with the college’s class reunions. The town has one flashing red light at the main intersection. No green or yellow is necessary — just red. And even that is shut off during Hyllningsfest, for the parade and for the Swedish Dancers.

The day before the actual festivities (which I enjoyed immensely — hello fellow Stuga-ites!), I spent time alone, wandering the town with my 80s playlist on, revisiting the scenes of past sins. Such as:

  • with my roommate one night, moving a bench from City Hall and putting it in the middle of Main Street.
  • with the same roommate, grabbing bread carts from behind the grocery store and racing each other in the parking lot.
  • making out in the bandshell on my 19th birthday with Jim (“making out” is not a euphemism, mom — I truly did not mess around with Jim).
  • my pattern of going after the same guy my friend Kathy liked. Three times, we figured.
  • stealing a couple of dollars from the till at my summer job, just because I could.
  • “going to Nebraska,” which was a euphemisms for, well, taking a trip of sorts.
  • breaking a few hearts.

And the scene of past hurts:

  • having my heart broken. More than once.
  • being on the outside of girl groups. Or at least thinking I was.
  • not being able to do the splits for my final drill-team routine. I was the only girl who wasn’t that limber. Fail.
  • two car accidents that claimed the lives of friends.

I got to revisit these scenes of teen/twentysomething angst with mature eyes. Even my imperfections were made perfect.

Fall sunflowers, to and fro.

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19 thoughts on “Perfect Moment Monday: Retrospect”

  1. Wow. My university had 22,000 people. In theory I share memories with far more people, but in reality, with far fewer. Sounds like a great walk down your memory lane.
    Love that in Kansas, “taking a trip of sorts” is “going to Nebraska.”

  2. It can be so powerful to revisit old haunts like that…powerful and strange. There’s just something about physically being there that nothing else compares.

  3. It sounds like it was a very fulfilling weekend.
    Thanks for your nice comments, means alot.
    A PMM I would like to share-
    My 14 y/o son telling me that “It must suck to be the kids who you got my bike back from”.

    And I said, “It sure doesn’t suck to be US!!”

    Thanks, dear!

  4. Speaking of years, it really freaks me out when my students say they were born in 1989, which is the year I graduated from high school.

    Great post! Taking a trip down memory lane can be wonderful.

  5. I went to a huge school. My memories are held with the small gorup of people I was friends with. sounds like you had a wonderful experience. It also sounds like the “bad” things you did were about as bad as the things I did.

  6. You were a rebel Lori! Such a bad ass.

    And I’m sorry about the car crashes which took the lives of your friends. Such a hard thing to live with.

    Thank you for participating in my blog request. Funny you should say i’m “fearless” when just the other day, in answer to the question “What’s one thing you are not?” and I answered “brave”. It’s nice to see people see me in a different life.

  7. I hope none of the “hometown” police subscribe to your blog! I bet they have some open, unsolved crimes that they could close, now that they have a (blog) confession. :)

    I’ll be back next week for Perfect Moment Monday. I took a week off to participate in the Stirrup Queens Book Tour.

    Here’s the link if you’d like to check it out: (http://www.stirrup-queens.com/).

  8. It’s nice that you have a small college class. My college had an enrollment of 20K, and I still live in my college town, and actually work on the campus, so in order to relive my college memories, I have to see the place through the eyes of someone who hasn’t been here for a while.

    “Going to Nebraska” — I’ll remember that one.

  9. I went to a huge school. My memories are held with the small gorup of people I was friends with. sounds like you had a wonderful experience. It also sounds like the “bad” things you did were about as bad as the things I did.

  10. You were a rebel Lori! Such a bad ass.

    And I’m sorry about the car crashes which took the lives of your friends. Such a hard thing to live with.

    Thank you for participating in my blog request. Funny you should say i’m “fearless” when just the other day, in answer to the question “What’s one thing you are not?” and I answered “brave”. It’s nice to see people see me in a different life.

  11. I hope none of the “hometown” police subscribe to your blog! I bet they have some open, unsolved crimes that they could close, now that they have a (blog) confession. :)

    I’ll be back next week for Perfect Moment Monday. I took a week off to participate in the Stirrup Queens Book Tour.

    Here’s the link if you’d like to check it out: (http://www.stirrup-queens.com/).

  12. It’s nice that you have a small college class. My college had an enrollment of 20K, and I still live in my college town, and actually work on the campus, so in order to relive my college memories, I have to see the place through the eyes of someone who hasn’t been here for a while.

    “Going to Nebraska” — I’ll remember that one.

  13. It sounds like a powerful trip down memory lane. What a great experience it must have been to spend those years in a small college and close knit community. I’m a sucker for small town festivals!

  14. How lovely that the college town has stayed much as you remember it! It’s amazing how those memories can come flooding back, as if they happened yesterday.

    I get that when DH fly back home to visit our parents 1-2 times a year. Sadly, the town has grown and changed so much, many of the places that were meaningful to us (the coffee shop where we spent many of our early dates) are long gone.

  15. I’ve been to Kansas quite a few times, and the giant sunflowers are one of my favorite reasons to return. Well, that and my family.

What say you?