78 years young today

The kids playing outside in the winter snow.
The kids at St. Joseph's Indian School love to play in the snow.

We got an icy drizzle on St. Joseph’s Indian School’s campus today that turned the sidewalks into skating rinks for a while. Staff and students alike had to be very careful. We got word that the Carola Home (high school boys) took their annual skiing trip to the Black Hills yesterday. There were a couple harsh wipe outs, it’s a good thing our boys are tough. After mass the younger students on campus flocked to our hills by the football field, which give a fun ride, but nothing compared to the slopes in the beautiful Black Hills.

Fr. Bernie turned 78 years young today, so we took him out to dinner for his birthday. With the roads still worrisome (and maybe with some folks staying home for football playoffs) the normally hopping Al’s Oasis, which can seat hundreds, had just eleven patrons dining when we arrived. D’Kera, one of our high school students was waitressing, and had only two tables in the two hours she had been on duty. Having safely arrived, we sat down to a nice feast and good conversation to celebrate the many years of faithful service Fr. Bernie has given.

Ten months since my sarcoma surgery

Too many meetings on such a spring day. We covered personnel issues, salary adjustments for the coming year and safety/security around campus.

Deacon Dave my predecessor, and Fr. Tom our provincial, rolled in for this week’s Board of Directors meeting.  When Fr. Tom visits he enjoys making a pilgrimage to Al’s Oasis, where after a good meal he always orders their signature lemon cream cheese pie. Al’s is a local landmark that many travelers stop at on their way across country.

This evening, I went over to the gym and shot around with some of the high school students. Shay, who graduates next month, told me about her weekend visit to Creighton University in Omaha, where she has been accepted. She admitted to being somewhat intimidated at first at the sheer size of a major college campus. After meeting her potential roommate and familiarizing herself with the campus, she felt more comfortable. The idea and reality of college takes a while to sink in. I’m sure there will be many stages of adjustment along the way. But we are trying to prepare students to set off for new adventures and opportunities on their own.

As for my adjustment, it’s been about 10 months since my sarcoma surgery. It’s time now to get weaned off the medicine I’ve been taking to mask the nerve pain while the nerve endings slowly grow back. When I tried a while back the pain was too strong. Now it’s a bit bothersome, but it does feel like I’m making progress. I just need patience as it takes more time than I’d like.