On homecoming

Tonight, the St. Peter Saints will play the Luverne Cardinals at 7 p.m. in St. Peter. St. Peter is celebrating its homecoming week and football game tonight, which means parades, homecoming queens and kings, getting out of class early, and an exciting football game to which alumni are invited once a year. Nostalgia is fun, but it doesn’t pay the mortgage. I have always thought that Thomas Wolfe was correct when he said you can’t go back home. Personally, I haven’t really lived in my hometown for over thirty years, so although I recognize the last names, a couple of generations of children have gone through the high school. I have more in common with the football players’ and cheerleaders’ grandparents than I do their parents. As the decades have dropped by, my hometown has changed a bit, but it has also stayed the same. Living in the past is a dead end. Homecoming is more fun for the high school kids than it is for the old alumni, and that is the way it should be. Kick-off is scheduled in about an hour, and the band will play, the cheerleaders will jump and scream, the young men will strap on their gear, and the students will file into the stadium to cheer on their team as they always have. Perhaps homecoming is there to remind us all that we have grown up, Peter Pan. I will not be there, just as I have never been there for the past thirty-six years. It’s always time to move on.