Last week, the family and I took a vacation to New England. We stayed just north of Boston, visiting several historical sites and taking in a Red Sox game. In addition, we went for a whale watching tour, had lunch at an Irish Pub, ate cannolis in the North End, and rode up to the New Hampshire beaches (where the water is still cold!).
The highlight of the trip was visiting with some of my graduate school friends from Penn State. I had not seen some of them for nearly 20 years, but it was great seeing them again. Some have left the weather business, but many of them are still doing what they set out to do in the early ‘90s.
One of my best friends is still in meteorology, but in a non-forecasting way. He works for Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Lincoln Lab. He works on developing, testing, and recommending numerical weather simulations for aviation purposes. These are the programs that help air traffic controllers route airplanes around bad weather more quickly and efficiently. We met at his house in suburban Boston for a couple of days of good food, good drink, and good stories. We all brought our kids and mixed in some basketball, volleyball, and badminton during the weekend.
There were a lot of "whatever happened to" stories. Even in these days of social networking, there are still several of our friends who have managed to disappear, perhaps by accident, perhaps by choice. And of course, there was the mandatory rehashing of certain recreational events from that time in our lives. Perhaps you know those types of events… the ones which you are glad there are no pictures. It's a good thing Facebook was not around when I was in college!
The funny thing is that none of us felt that old. Sure, we all looked a little bit different, but I did not come away thinking that anyone looked… well… bad. We've all held up pretty well. I hope we can still say that in 2031.