Highden,
Sun. 14th Dec. ’69.

Dear Mum & Dad,

This is my second to last letter home from Highden! (I’m not particularly nostalgic). This time 3 weeks we will probably be professed:
- B.B. Goodman (S.M.)!

Did I ever tell you that the vows were temporary for 3 years? I suppose I did. However you can apply for a dispensation any time up until 3 years, then you take permanent vows. However – this is probably it! Just imagine – never able to get married after 3 weeks time! Yet Religious Vows are just as important as Marriage Vows – bind under pain of sin etc. etc. Nor can you take them if you have any intention at the time of leaving the Society later – so it’s for better or for worse too. However, that’s looking at the negative side of things.

I think that the 6th & 7th of Jan. are ideal days for visiting & going out. (There are 2 visiting days plus one day out in all but one doesn’t have to take them of course). I was actually going to suggest that time to you because we go to the Mount on the 5th & will probably stay there for a couple of days before going out to Camp. One thing however, I don’t think you would be permitted to drop me out at Camp afterwards but that doesn’t matter of course. Anything will be worth a day OUT!

The Sung Mass went fairly well this morning. Only 4 Sung Masses left this year – Next Sunday, Xmas Day, the Sunday after Xmas, & Profession Mass. So far we have had 61 Sung Masses and 163 Benedictions. There are 21 days to go which amounts to about 84 cups of tea, & so many minutes before…… etc. Time is beginning to drag now days with “Holiday RULE” & not much to do – especially Sundays. (This is the second letter I’ve written home today, the other one I screwed up because it was too boring) [Did I ever tell you that I actually packed my bags about March & was all ready to go home, except that David Latu knew & he persuaded me to try it for another week?!! And in October I wrote a 16 page letter ON “Highden” which I screwed up, but which “got it out of the system” anyway!]

I am still wondering what to do with my profit from the patrimony. (I don’t mean “who to give it to”, but do I have to sign anything?)

Also, about the Will. I’ll have to write it out next week (but sign it in January) but what do I do with the shares? I don’t suppose you split them up, or give them to anyone hanging around the countryside. So “what” do I give the shares to?

The roses are flowering like anything at the moment.

Did Francie get the film? I sent it to her because it was her holiday film.

We have won the battle with the fleas, (I hope) & the dogs have been sprayed.

The Gecko died. R.I.P. The pet magpie makes a terrible racket all the time – but it’s something to moan about, and it doesn’t hurt him.

Fr. Scully goes on Tuesday.

The Conge on Monday was very hot & sunny.

I sent a Xmas card to Mrs. Walls.

We hear that there could be about 17 Aspirants at the Mount next year. This is about the average. Our year was 16 and is now 10. However, the number 17 can go up & down like a yo-yo between now & Feb.

Rob. Devlin has cut the grass in the new Vegie Garden (over by the Handball Alley) & is going to bale it before it’s ploughed. About 4 bales worth! They’ve sold most of the cattle now – just a few stragglers – lost lot averaged about $70 a head – bout for about $40 a head. (I think). [Get a profit of about $16000 all clear I would say. It doesn’t go anywhere!]

Can’t think of any more news. Must go and have one of my 84 cups of tea!

Love from
Bruce




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