I just got back from the retreat this afternoon. I had a good time, and talked with several of the people there. We stayed in on of those summer beach houses that the people rent out while they’re not using them. Nice place, it was big enough for the ten of us students who went. The adults (Ryan Hendricks, the Assistant Hall Director (AHD), Fr. Pete, the HD, Fr. Brad, the pastoral resident, and Tom, who is in his last year before becoming a priest came too, but slept in another rented house.
There were several talks, and some small group discussions, as well as general reflection periods. I’m not going to go too deep into the details, but the way they had it set up seemed to work well. There was enough free time to do stuff, too. Friday night, several of us walked down to the beach. Someone had brought a light-up frisbee, so we played frisbee in the dark. Well, not exactly dark, with the light from the city, but it was pretty dark. You could usually see the darkness created by a person, but if they moved to the wrong spot, so they appeared near a light source, they disappeared. It was fun, and then we ended up playing a game of 500. Some of us waded a bit, and then we all walked back up to the house. It was up a road, about 5 blocks from the beach. Jake had walked down the hill barefoot, and declared it not too bad, so as we had all taken off our shoes to keep the sand out, we all walked up barefoot. Turns out Jake’s feet are a bit tougher than most, as there were a few parts of the road that had some gravel that kinda hurt. The road, and the sand before it, was pretty cold, so I really couldn’t feel it that much.
I stayed up talking for a while that night, but I went to bed quite a bit earlier than I did last night. Saturday, there were sessions in the morning, and then we had the better part of the evening to ourselves. Drew, Korte, Luis, and I rode down to the main part of town (1/4 to 1/2 mile) with Ryan, who was driving Jake to go talk to his dad. (His dad is a contractor, and is working on a house very near to the retreat.) The four of us walked around town a bit, stopping at a boarding shop to browse, and then getting an ice cream cone. We walked/ played frisbee down the beach to the house. When we got back, Tom, Ryan, Fr. Brad and Andy were playing a game of “Settler of Catan”. I’d never seen the game before, but it’s really fun.
It’s a strategy game, and the board has several different types of spaces. The represent different types of land, that produce different resources. Each space as a number placed on it, and any player that owns a ‘settlement’ bordering a space that contains the number just rolled by the dice gets one ‘resource card’ of the appropriate type. For example, if I had 2 settlements bordering the clay fields, and the space had a 8 on it, every time an 8 was rolled, I would get two brick cards, one for each settlement. Resources were used to build more settlements, roads between them, and Cities (larger settlements). Whoever accumulated 10 ‘victory points’, wins the game. Settlements, cities, and a few other things counted towards the points. All in all a rather challenging game. The spaces are re-arranged every game, too, so you can’t just memorize the best locations to start out.
They were just starting their second game when I got there, and I watched to the end, where Tom won. I joined in the next game, and made a good showing, but Tom had his third victory. Later last night, the game was again played, and Tom again swept it. He’s really good with analyzing things–he says that he often plays risk with a friend in the seminary, and he’s never lost. Tom then went to the other house to go to sleep, helping Drew get started before he left. I watched that game, because I wanted to get in on the next round. The game ended going on over two hours (one hour is normal) and they finished around 3 in the morning. I’d long before given up on playing, but kept watching to see who won, certain that it had to end soon. By the end, Hendricks was helping Andy get whatever he needed just so the game would end. He was in a good position, except that he got blocked in, and then developed a bad trade relationship with the person who had a monopoly on the grain. HE may have been able to win, but it wasn’t worth it to him.
I called home and talked for an hour, but somehow, I didn’t tell them most of what I just wrote. I bet when they end up reading this, someone will complain that they learn more about me through my blog than they do in person. Such is life.
THE (DRUNKEN) IDIOTS
Teige W. came up on Saturday afternoon, he’d hosted a friend from his school overnight. He talked about the things that had happened Friday night. Between what he knew, and what I heard after I got back, it seems to have been quite a weekend here. Apparently, last year, during the hall retreat was the biggest amount of drinking in Villa. It actually makes sense, as the HD, AHD and some RA’s are gone. This year was no different.
Last weekend, we had a ‘Phantom Puker’, who puked all over the hall in A wing, down the stairs, and then on the carpet from the stairs to the door. It was not cleaned up, and discovered in the morning. Hendricks and a resident cleaned it up in the morning, but the stench was left, and an emergency steam cleaning had to be done. The fellow that cleaned it got called out, and gets double pay, so the cost of the cleanup was in the ‘hundreds of dollars’ according to the e-mail Fr. Pete sent out. As no one has come forward, there will likely be a hall fine to pay for the cleanup
Apparently, Public Safety (often called P-Safe) decided to check out Villa for drinking. I don’t know if it was related to the puker, the hall retreat, or something else, but they sealed off the dorm, blocking all the exits, and must have searched the dorm or something. I understand that the word of the party got out to the other 5 dorms, and something that big probably tipped of Public Safety.
The following night, last night, the procedure was repeated. This time, two keg were found in the dorms. From what I hear, there were kegs Friday night, but P-Safe missed them. The kickers–the kegs were in the Hall President’s room, and were purchased by an RA.
Not only were these people stupid enough to pull this off one night, but even after Public Safety sealed off the dorm, and managed to miss them, they kept them and had a party again the next night. I guess there was even a root beer social in the lounge, some say as camouflage for the party.
(I should note, that while the RA was over 21, the legal age, and the President may be, there seems to have been several (minor) residents at the parties. Not that having a keg is allowed in the dorms anyway, but these people were really trying to break as many rules/laws as possible!)
Seeing as the crackdown has become serious, chances are that UP will soon have two fewer students. The general consensus is that those in charge will make an example of them.
So that was what happened this weekend!