Reunion roundup

Reunions held in 2012: Class of 1997 reunion

23 - 25 November 2012

By: Elaine Dommisse (Roos) and Lara Fairall


Kevin Bax, James Beatty, Ferhana Bhorat, Luelle Botha (Roberts), Sean Burmeister, Ashley Chin, Gaylene Cronk, Brett Cullis, Justine Damp (Stewart), Leigh Donald (Gordon, Sean Edelstein, Rene English, Lara Fairall, Heather Finlayson, Kevin Franz, Tara Greenfield (Lawn), Murray Hayes, Fiona Hodgson (Meihuizen), Jenny Holmes (Kruse), Nazly Khan, Lee Kleynhans (Fairlie), Nick Martin, Jean-Marc Maurel, Carey McKenzie, Farahnaz Mowzer (Bray), Katy Murie, Kevin Nankissor, Ania Nowosad (von Bormann), Manesh Pather, Candice Roberts, Belinda Rogers (McIntosh), Elaine Roos (Dommisse), Lynda Ross, Qonita Said-Hartley, Stephen Savage, Frank Schneider, Jason Stone, Yousuf Vadachia, Andrew van der Poll, Sara van der Westhuyzen (Couves), Stuart Viner, Sahrah Warley, Shaun Wilson.

Wow, 15 years down the line and most of us look pretty much the same, even though plenty have families now - being tired from partying has been replaced by sleep deprivation from one's own offspring! We are all doing "Grown-up" jobs now and even Frank was getting Married! Everyone really put in a good effort to be there: special mention and prize has to go to Sean Edelstein who came to the Gala dinner directly from his flight from the States, with his 2 beautiful daughters, wife and parents in tow! Classmates came from Australia, New Zealand, U.K and the States, but what was really fantastic was that two thirds of us are actually still living and working in SA! There is a good smattering of GPs but we also seem to have turned out a lot of Anaesthetists and Radiologists.

Our reunion this year coincided with the Centenary of Medical School, and several functions were arranged. The weekend kicked off with a cocktail party in the new and very modern Wolfson Pavillion (glass drum building) where Prof Louw welcomed us. There was lots of catching up over drinks and canapés, figuring out what everyone had been up to over the past 15yrs and linking up with old friends.

The weather wasn't great on the Saturday: some brave souls went on the Bo-Kaap walk followed by lunch, while others enjoyed being in Cape Town and seeing old friends. The highlight of the weekend was the Gala dinner at Smuts Hall. How strange it was to be back on upper campus all dressed up! The dinner comprised much more chatting, meeting each-others spouses, good food and Centenary wine. Dr Richard Gordon ( Leigh Donald's hubby), linked to UCT's Drug Discovery and Development Centre and Medicines for Malaria, gave a very inspirational talk about medical innovations in South Africa. Andrew van der Poll sent this email - "..after his really inspirational talk. It has been so amazing I am really going to see if I can get registered and get back to where I belong!!!"

There was much consternation and distress over the whereabouts of Jabez and Dave after an administrative glitch. They are both well and we have had a lovely email from Dave. "Contrary to administrative claims, the last time I checked I was very much alive and well. I am sorry to hear that the error has caused people distress. I wonder how that came about? I was living in Christchurch when the earthquake hit (which was a surreal experience) but through a series of fortunate coincidences that I can only ascribe to divine intervention (I was at home when it hit, not at work in the CBD, I had already resigned and gotten another job and sold the house, etc., etc.) I was able to leave the city rapidly thereafter and take up the post here in sunny Northland as the province's only resident clinical microbiologist and, allegedly, the first in 20 years. Needless to say, life has been frenetically busy here since I arrived 20 months ago. Northland is, incidentally, the most geologically stable part of New Zealand - a fact I greatly appreciate."

The weekend was rounded off with a breakfast picnic at Kirstenbosch where everyone got to meet the kiddies that were in town!

Thanks everyone for making a great effort to be there, I think it is safe to say that everyone was pleasantly surprised that they really enjoyed themselves! A huge thanks to Joan Tuff from the Alumni Office who made the whole weekend possible, and sent countless emails pulling it all together. Looking forward to another one in 10 years time!