Once a month, a few of us 'younger' clergy in Cincinnati get together for 'support group.' I know, it sounds like some type of quasi-psychobabble-kumbaya group, but really it is a chance for guys who were in the seminary together to schedule a day where we can reconnect, relax, and recharge for our regular ministry. (There are certain things that we feel comfortable discussing only with other priests.)
Well, yesterday was a more extended version of our usual afternoon and evening session, as we started Monday late afternoon with a trip to Indian Lake, which continued through most of Tuesday. My parents are fortunate enough to have a place on the lake, and allowed four priests to crash the place for the day. (They were at work, anyway.)
Monday was a perfect evening to sit on the water, dangle the feet in, and chat until the Bengals game came on, scratch that, 'Michael Vick commentary with a football game in the background' came on. Add in a few card games, and it made for a very relaxing evening.
Tuesday is where the trouble starts. No definite starting time, but a celebration of Mass as all the fathers arose, some breakfast and hitting the boat for some water sports. I was the only one who had skied any length of time (but it had been a length of time since I had last skied, not to mention that there is significantly more of me as well.) First up, Fr. McCarthy managed to wrestle himself into a standing position after a few tries. Frs. Ruwe and Nguyen both gave mighty attempts, but were thwarted by the deep sea monster that kept attacking their skis. That monster wasn't satisfied with attacking the novices and kept snatching the slalom ski out from under me, but I got the last laugh after getting the other ski from the boat and drug my backside out of the water for a short jaunt around the lake.
After a swim at the boat beach and a lunch at the Tilton Hilton, we headed back out to the main body of water for round two. Fr. Ruwe finally shook off the sea monster and got up, first time ever! We could hear the screams from the boat! Very exciting! Fr. Nguyen was thwarted by an apparent leg injury before Fr. McCarthy's triumphant return to the water. I was last to go, and Ruwe tried to kill me. I managed to drag my backside out of the water after another attack by the sea monster, only to have Ru haul the boat up to 35 miles per hour!!! All of a sudden, I feel my arms attempting to leave my shoulders as the water is rushing past at an alarming rate! SLOW DOWN!!! We got to a manageable speed for me to run a few times out beside the boat before I was complete gassed, and we returned to the shore a little redder and a lot sorer than we left a few hours prior.
All in all, a good day with great fellowship. But I can hardly walk today!!!