Sunday, June 11, 2006

Crossroads Men's Retreat

On Friday we had a guy's retreat this weekend at the St. John's retreat center in Plymouth. The place was an old Catholic Seminary that they'd redone and turned into a golf-course, hotel and retreat facilities. The place was nice - but no TV's or internet access in the rooms - going with that whole 'retreat' theme, I guess. The whole gig only lasted about 24 hours, but it was a great chance to get away, switch my brain into a different gear and do some reflection. There were about 25 of us - a really diverse group. From 20 year old guys, to really, really old people like Brad. The theme of the retreat was on what our mission in this world is, so Joe would teach for a few, we'd get some time on our own to reflect, and some time to talk through stuff as a group. The best part about the retreat was connecting with a really diverse group of guys - all ages and all walks of life. I learned stuff about the guys that I would never learn by just seeing them on Sunday. I found out that one guy is a licensed pyro-technician who owns a fireworks company. He invited me to come help him setup for one of his upcoming shows. I never told him the story of how I burned down my room my senior year in high school by trying to create my own fireworks.

At about 11, Tony showed up with 4 giant pizzas from Toraminos. This is a rare shot of Mr. Kirk Vickers (aka Mr. big-shot top 100 trainer in the country, according to Men's Journal) eating something without any redeeming value. We hung out from about 11-1 playing euchre. Eli and I got smoked by Brad and Kirk 3 games to 0.

On our floor, we discovered this laundry shoot. Being on the third floor, it seemed like a good idea to climb in and lower myself all the way down to see where it went.

Matt and Zach (formerly in my youth group for 7 years) and now older and wiser, helped me lower myself down the chute, with a bed sheet as a safety net. I learned the hard way that the chute was not built to support a 200lb man pressing his arms and legs against the sides.

I thought this picture was an interesting contrast in almost every sense of the word.

After the retreat some of the guys went golfing and a bunch of us went over to Hines Drive to play Frisbee golf. This was the first time I'd played in a long time and we had a blast. It's free, which is nice, you're outside, and you're in a nice area. Judging from the rest of the crowd playing, we were some of the few out there not reefing down. In order to be good at this game, you have to be able to throw a frisbee very straight, for a very long way. I can do the former, just not the the latter. You can see more pictures of the retreat here.

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