Woodrow Wilson Junior High School had their Seventh reunion and this one had Deja-vu written all over it. Most people have high school reunions, but in Southwest Detroit we celebrate our Junior High. I am not sure how many have gone to all seven of the reunions, but I know that I have. The first one was kind of an ad-hoc affair where we met at a bar and it was a good time. The second one was an organized affair that one thinks of, for a reunion, but our reunions are open-year parties; so, we have had graduates from the Fifties, Sixties, Seventies, Eighties and Nineties, until the school was changed to an academy. The third reunion I had the honor of being the chairman, but I was blessed to have a great group of people assisting and the groundwork was set for the years that followed. The reunion besides being a great way to see people that one grew up with, there have been teachers that have attended some of the events, we have had live music at times courtesy of the professional and semi-professional musicians that have walked the halls of the school and on a more solemn note there is a break in the good times, and the attendees take one of the helium balloons that adorn the tables as centerpieces and write the name of a friend and former graduate that is no longer with us, and the balloons are sent up to the heavens after a prayer.
Since the inception the entrance price was twenty-five dollars, and for that one received the entertainment, food, beer, soft drinks and sometimes wine. The food is set up buffet-style with salads, breads, vegetables and starch and a choice of three entrée choices. The dinner choices this year was roast beef, mostaccioli with a meat sauce and “city-chicken.” “City Chicken” for the uninitiated is a skewer of veal and pork cubes that have been breaded and then baked and finished off with a gravy, it may be a Michigan dish for all I know, but I remember having it as a kid at some of my friend’s homes. There were a couple of sheet cakes for dessert, one frosted with the school upon it, and the other extolling the theme of Southwest Detroit. Afterwards one of our grads offered to take photographs of the attendees, and even with the attendance down there were plenty of group photos. Many were done by individual years, but alas, my classmates had prior commitments and we usually had the largest group, so the few of us that did attend were grouped with all of the Sixties alumni. Our photographer worked all evening and she did a tremendous job, as she even had time to take individual sittings, couples and then there were even some groups that wished to moon the camera. We also had a volunteer videographer who has been posting his work for the last couple of years, including some fun videos where one-person morphs into another person, and I feel sorry for the young lady that had to morph into herself from me and my moustache.
There was more Deja-vu as there was a repeat from the second reunion where a group had a magnum of Gallo Moscato and they were not aware that it did not have a screw-cap closure, so as they were hunting around for a corkscrew they were sent my way, as everyone surmised that I would have one, which of course I did. I handed them my waiter style corkscrew from my pocket and they had never used one before, so I did the honors, after all, who would want to see anyone parched on a summer day? Another example of Deja-vu is that I do stick out like a sore thumb, even with my dark indigo denim trousers, because I have my hat and a sport coat, alright I admit I wear a sport coat like a young lady carries a purse, because it is the only way to have everything that I might need without having bulging pockets on my trousers. The final Deja-vu is that I bring wine to the event, and nobody is surprised at that. It was a warm summer day/night and I decided to have a Sauvignon Blanc and I traveled with a wine glass, because it just wouldn’t work with a plastic or Styrofoam tumbler. I had a bottle of Quintessence Pouilly Fume 2015 from the Upper Loire Valley of France. This is one of the areas where Sauvignon Blanc really shines and shows off the typical flint and limestone of the terroir of the region, alas this wine was a pale representation of what I was hoping for. I also found out afterwards that it is imported by Bronco Wine Company and they are known for their popular priced wines without a lot of nuance, but they fit the niche market that they have developed. It was in my cellar, but I don’t recall purchasing it, but it did the job that I wanted, namely a nice chilled white wine while I enjoyed the festivities. Here is looking forward to the Eighth Reunion.