Well another week in Paradise! We are getting around much better now. Dad only turns the windshield wipers on once in a while now. I tried driving the other day but I about gave Dad a heart attack so i decided i better try another time. All in all we have had a great week. We are finding our way around much better and things are falling into place in the Mission office. I had a few calls this week but mostly only flu type stuff. Nothing too exciting.
We have been asked to speak in church this week in the ward we attended last sunday. but we have been assigned to the Nasina 2nd ward beginning next week. It is a ward in desperate need of help. They have a new bishop who has driven several of the Melchezidek Priesthood members away. Dad met with the Stake President over that ward last week and met the Bishop. We need to figure out what is going on so we can see if we can help get the ward back on track. Dad is excited to work with the Bishop and we are excited to become a part of the ward and get involved with the people. Now our mission can really begin. Doing what we really want to do! One of the biggest problems over here is that they get baptized but then leave for one reason or another. Usually because the Bishop does something to offend them. One ward member left the ward and began attending another ward because of something the bishop said to him. The thing that is interesting about it is that he is an Ordinance worker in the Temple. You would think he would be able to work things out with the Bishop. Lots of interesting things going on in the Church here. They need lots of help. Most of the leadership has little or no experience and don't have a clue how to run a ward. They are all wonderful humble people but very inexperienced. This is what dad dreamed of doing on our mission so he is very excited to get going with the ward. We'll let you know how it goes.
Last night Dad got a call from one of the Zone leaders to tell him that a couple of missionaries way out in the bush rolled their truck 3 times. Luckily they were not hurt badly but the truck was totaled. The missionary driving wasn't supposed to be driving so they are in big trouble. It took the Zone leader about 2 hours to drive out to where they were. Dad had to call to have the truck towed away. I think this is just the beginning of some of the fun we will encounter while we are here. Our mission president said no wonder he is stressed. He has 125 19 year olds driving his cars and spending his money! He is a great mission president and says he is very grateful to have Dad and I here to help him. The finances are only a small part of what we have to do. The other part is helping set up missionary flats and solving problems when the missionaries need help with cars of flats. We will be able to do a lot of traveling together with the mission president and his wife to outer areasl. It will be an awesome experience. They are wonderful people and we feel it a privilege to work so closely with the missionaries.
Everyone here moves at a much slower pace. The most important phrase we have learned is "we are in Fiji" that just about explains everything when it doesn't go the way we are used to.
I made Lasagna last night for a dinner with the other senior couples. It was quite the project. Sour cream, cottage cheese and cream cheese are not things you can just run pick up at the store. We went to a dairy to get our sour cream and cottage cheese. With all the paper work and due to Fiji time it took us about 2 hours. Another sister went to about 4 places to find cream cheese. The Lasagna turned out really good but i don't i'll be making it again for a while. A lot of stuff is available part of the time but not all the time. The milk comes in boxes that you store in the cupboard. Lots of other interesting differences. I think I mentioned they have a place called Cost u Less (Fiji's version of Costco) which most people here call Cost U More. We went yesterday to buy Aluminum Foil, Saran wrap, A package including heinz ketchup, frenchs mustard and pickle relish. It cost us over $100 dollars Fijian which is about $50 US dollars. American brands are a novelty and very expensive!
We are having so many new experiences it is hard to explain all of them to you. We have found that one of our hot spots to eat is McDonalds we know we can trust the food and it is really pretty good.
Over all we are have a great experience and are learning many new things every day. We rely a lot on our prayers and faith that we can learn what we need to learn. He has blessed us and has carried us through some tough days. Our testimonies are growing every day as is our love for Fiji and the Fijian people.