There's nothing like a school reunion to stir memories of days gone by, and Kaitaia Intermediate School's 50th anniversary celebration over the weekend was no exception.
Some of the stories might have grown in the telling, but most of the tellers sounded credible enough to be believed. And if there was a general tendency to look back on then as an improvement on now, that's probably standard reunion practice too.
Old boy and current board of trustees chairman Kevin Matthews told Saturday's brief formal session that the only constant in school life was change, including the evolution of technology, the way the curriculum was delivered and the constant addition of rules and regulations.
He recalled heading off on a day trip to the Moerewa freezing works as a member of Mr Greenbrook's Form 1 class, for a first-hand look at how stock were "processed."
It was a sensory experience, he said, one that might well have encouraged some of his classmates to seek alternative sources of protein.
"There's no way this could happen today. It probably shouldn't have happened then, when I think about it now," he added.
"Anyhow, they were freer and simpler times, with less regulation and all the accompanying anxiety we have today. Maybe they were better times."
Interestingly, perhaps, for all the rules and regulations of the modern day, many of the former pupils' reminiscences involved teachers who were strict, who demanded that things be done their way, who were well aware that corporal punishment was legal, and largely enjoyed parental approval, who were respected and remembered with affection and gratitude.
The teachers had stories to tell too, Pam Scahill recalling colleague Dan Urlich opening a betting book when word spread that one of the teachers had embarked upon a blessed event.
Pat Hoskin, who along with Rosemary Shepherd and the late Josie Murray was to become a KIS legend, was quoted at 100-1. If she recalled correctly her odds were 60-1, while some of her young colleagues were as short as 2-1.
Mr Urlich vociferously professed his inability to recall the sweepstake, but did not say it could not have happened.
And there was one-time principal Nat Dickie, who for reasons that still pass all understanding chose to decorate his office as a harem as a surprise for a school inspector.
When said inspector arrived he was greeted by the sight of Mr Dickie, dressed as a sheikh, reclining on a couch and being fanned by teacher EJ (Ted) Thompson, dressed only in rugby shorts.
By all accounts it did not end well, although the inspector was surprised.
Check out some of the photos from the event here.