Omaha meeting was a small scale affair and had the typical Midwestern hospitality. It was attended by 30 members of the alumni association and the real surprise was Daryl Christian from Melbourne Australia.
Because of him a number of his classmates from the batch of 1967 showed up. Executive committee meeting sheduled for the Friday July 2nd 4pm was combined with bannial buisnes meeting at 2pm on the 3rd of july.
Those who arrived early joined Prem Pais and a few of his classmates from the class of 64 joined for supper at the Indian Oven across the street from the embassy suite hotel followed with a few hour of hospitality with a number of other alumni that trickled in including our next President of the north American chapter Deepak Edwards.
Saturdays CME program was delayed by an hour due to audiovisual setup problem.
Clinical updates were presented on Diabetes by Cyrus De Souza a endocrinologist on the scope of the problem, cardiovascular risks and management guidelines, Deepak Edwards of UIC a opthalmologist spoke on opthalmic complications and after a small break Angelo Patil presented his opinion on medical ethics of Cloning. Edward Pinto spoke on BPH and and the intreactions of the drugs of its treatment. Then we walked across the street for lunch.
I was surprised to see the beer and wine became a part of a CME lunch.
The business meeting started at 2 PM. Items proposed and voted were discontinuation of inviting any one from Bangalore for these meeting because of cost and limited benefit. All requests for funding for research, exchange visits and any help for those coming for workshops and training programs go through the committee at the deans office and when approved be directed to friends of St. Johns for funding approval by its executive committee.
Even the privately funded projects will have to go through this procedure to maintain the tax free status and good standing for Friends of St. Johns.
Prem Pais future Dean was the guest from Bangalore who brought us up to date on the Bangalore campus using a powerpoint presentation.. Deepak Edwards is the new President and Binu Philip (86) the vice president and Birgit Khandalavla(Ghosh 80) is the secretary treasurer, to promoted to the VP and then the president.
We only elect every other year a new secretary/ treasurer and we created a new trusty position to be a cordinator between the association and friends of st. johns.I volunteered for this position. All this was possible as our Minnesota registration has expired quite some time ago and we will reregister either in Illinois or Nebraska.
In the future thre will be a meeting every year, odd year it is friends of St. Johns and even year the alumni association.
Friends of St. Johns meeting was conducted by Ephrem Thoppil. The balances in various a/c were mentioned. He would like to disburse the Montreiro Fund and Frances Noel Fernandes fund. But waiting for directions and fullfilment of certain conditions. The executive committee has not formally met, once this happens three will more news on the way.
The organization is in good standing.Besides Eprhem being the president Geoge Verghese is the the trustee and I am some where there in the organization.
The meeting adjounrned and the visiting began over the collection of old photographs and at 5.30 moved to the cocktail lounge.
At 7.30 the cocktail hour followed with a banquet of Indian Cuisine cooked by the chef of the Indian Oven a favor of Maria and John Fernandez. The dance lasted till midnight. Ther were 80 people of the alumni relatives and friends had a good time. I had the priviledge of pouring wine as our wine hostess was not up to the task.
Next morning after free cooked breakfast, courtesy vans droped off the catholics for a sunday mass, and we gathered for the lunch with Omaha Stakes cooked at the resturant. We had ordered 15 filet mingeon we had to switch to ribeye as our group swelled to 30.
That followed the long good-byes. Only two families took us on the offer to host them for the 4th of July celebration and Our former and Present treasurers Jimmy and Birgit Khandalavalas their three sons provided the Midwestern hospitality. Prem Pais and Mark Sequeira and their spouses got to come to Grand island. 150 miles west of Omaha a two and a quarter mile drive. It was funny how I ran out of gas on my prius but had enough battery power to drive to the gas station first at 50 and then 20 mph.
Dropped Mark and Lynette off and had Daryl Over for a day and dropped them off the next evening. Have been receiving emails from the people who had come to Omaha and appreciated the hospitality. My response is' it was only possible because you came'. Hope to see the ever enlarging johnite family here and there. Good luck and good wishes to the gathering in Bangalore at the end of the month.
Make it a point to send a brief report of all the small meetings and they are just as important than next big one in the year 2013.