Saturday, November 19, 2016

Bridge Out

This past week brought more wonderful experiences and at least one additional challenge. It was transfer week again. Monday evening was the final meal and testimony meeting in the Mission Home for the departing missionaries (10 this time). Our mission covers quite an area and we aren't able to work closely with every missionary and get to know them as well as we would like. Some we only know by talking with them over the phone or through texting. This final meeting is a chance for us to learn some pretty amazing things from our amazing young missionaries - like their background and how their mission affected them.
Final dinner and testimony meeting.
Departing batch of 10.

Tuesday was temple day for the departing batch and we were able to attend with them. One of the first people we ran into after arriving on the temple grounds was Elder Saluta. This is the missionary who trained Sister McNett and has a special place in our heart. He was released last June and we weren't expecting to see him again before we go home. Elder Saluta just passed his exam to become a civil engineer and is on his way to Manila to look for employment. We sure wish him the best!
Joseph Saluta.
On the way home from the airport on Wednesday after meeting our 14 new missionaries, we were asked to pick up pizza for lunch. The bed and backseat of our truck was filled with luggage but we still managed to fit in 16 pizzas and garlic bread. One of the things we have learned here is that there is always room for the load that needs to be carried.

The person helping us with our pizza order at first thought we were asking for 60 pizzas, not 16. It was obvious from the the panicked look on his face that he had misunderstood.  It was also obvious that our new missionaries were not expecting pizza from Pizza Hut for their first meal in the mission.
Where shall we put this?
Our 14 newly arrived missionaries.

With the transfer over we started to the office Thursday morning only to be directed in the opposite direction of that in which we wished to go. Instead of the 5 minute route we normally take we had to go the 30-40 minute route. Someone had discovered a crack in the bridge on the shorter, more direct route and until it is fixed or replaced motorized vehicles will not be allowed on the bridge. We don't know how long this will be, but are not expecting it will be open again before we leave in March.
Our cracked bridge.

Only pedestrians and bicycles allowed.
Tricycles lined up to take passengers who walk across the bridge.
The commute home.
We now have to take a narrow cut off between the 'back road' and the National Highway which is not built to handle a large volume of traffic and tends to back up. On top of that, to go home we can't turn left onto the cut off so we have to drive past it, find a place to U-turn and come back to make a right turn. There will be some additional options available as construction on our 'back road' is completed.

Friday was a very special day for the mission that deserves a post of it's own next week.

Thought for the Week

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