Monday, July 21, 2014

Be Careful what you complain about:

The result of my (mild) complaint about transfers coming up this week was 

Typhoon Glenda

Been there, Done that, GOT THE T-SHIRT!

There is so much to talk about this week, I don't know where to start.  So, Food is always a good beginning, right?                                         We were feeling  a little homesick, I guess.  So we had a KC dinner:   Barbecued ribs, potato salad and baked beans.  YUMMY!   It turns out that when we buy a pork loin, they REMOVE the ribs.  We said, can we have those, too?  Sure, p50 more (about a dollar)  
We used our Jack Stack rub, and it turned out great.    

We got up very early on Monday morning, picked up a pauwi (departing missionary) and delivered her to the career workshop they attend, and managed to get a swim before going to the office.  Tues we swam at 6:00 AM , before the long exit day.  Took all the Pauwi   to the Memorial.  See these five lovely women?  Sisters Wilson, Jones, Houser, Racaza, and Sabaupan.  
Finally picked up everyone's travel documents at about 3:00 pm, before we went to the temple.  See the sky?

 Pretty, but scary. President and the APs were on the phone all afternoon, making plans for all the missionaries in case of serious flooding or dangerous winds.  Those without a second floor were sent to adjoining areas.  
Typhoon Glenda arrived in the Philippines on Tues night, along with 5 of our nine new arrivals, and by Wed morning it was in Manila and making a mess.  So, NOBODY flew.  Nobody got their immigration process completed for arrival.   Transfer day was cancelled.
In the city, there are huge billboards all along the highways.  But, for typhoons, they just roll up the canvases and tie them down until the wind stops.  All along the roads it looked like this.

Elder S and I were up at 3:00, with no power, mopping up water in our bedroom.  When it rains hard, it runs down between the walls of the building, along the concrete floor, and under the floorboards.  Who knew the missionaries most  likely to be flooded were on the 15th floor!

President called very early and told us he "suggested" that we not go out.  Just stay in and stay safe.  But at about 10:00,  things were calming down, and we had 9 missionaries at the hotel and didn't know what was going to happen.  He asked us to go over there, as there was no way to reach them. I had talked to them at the hotel at 3:00, to tell them not to wake our missionaries, as they were not flying anyway.  By 7:00  all the power was out.  Our cells still worked, though.  
The cleanup in our neighborhood had ALREADY begun!  Sadly, our pools were a mess, and full of debris.  They drained them the next day, and we have not been able to swim.  But, I think we can tomorrow.  (Tues)

 We waited with all 10 of them until it was decided that the 4:00 delayed flight to TOKYO would leave them stranded there, or worse!, and they had to stay.  But, the hotel was fully booked, and could not confirm reservations for them for the night.  
 We told President that we could take the three US bound Sisters home with us.  Little did we know it would be days before they could go home.  (IN fact, It is Sunday AM now, and we sent the last two at 4:00 am, and one of them is having trouble at the airport. GRRRRRR)

They were SO tired.  And upset, and sad.  They just came home with us and Crashed.  Later that day, our power and internet came back, and they called their parents with the sad news.   Sheffers took the two Elders.  (one bedroom, one bath apt.) We went to work (Brown Out at office.  Auxiliary power, no AC, but we COULD work.)  This is Sister Hepworth.  Sound asleep.  
That night, they were somewhat recuperated, and all five went to get dinner, and find a movie to watch or a game to play.  They ended up with Ukulele lessons at Sheffers house.         Sisters Wilson and Jones.

Thursday Transfers were back on!!  Here they all are at the Mission Home, rearranging the Transfer/Organization Board for President.  We welcomed our 9 new ones, got them assigned and oriented, and took them home to their areas.  Almost everyone still had no power.  I have to tell you, Quezon City is ONE VERY DARK PLACE without electricity.  

Thursday night President told the Sisters to go back to the STLs apartment in Cubao.  They were not happy!  We told them they could stay if he would approve it, and THEY told HIM they needed to do laundry, there would be 11 women over there with no electricity, and two bathrooms.  So, he gave in. 


By Friday Morning, we had new flights for everyone, the four Elders flew to Cebu, NZ, and the US. One Sister to Davao.
That left four Sisters.  They begged President to let us take Sister Sabaupan, from Naga,  too, and we had a really good slumber party.
                                      Yes, we had dinner, and then we all went to get pedicures!   Those feet really needed some help.  They kept saying, My feet are so soft!  My feet are so HAPPY!  

And, we should probably admit that Elder Schlager was pretty happy to have us go. That is a lot of women in a small apartment.  
 He very cheerfully stayed home to do the dishes. And paid the bill.  (They tried to entice him to join us.  Shows how well they DON'T know him.)

And, by the time they left, it pretty much looked like any Sister Missionary Apartment.  Stuff everywhere!  
We got up at 3;00 on Saturday Morning to send Sister Wilson and Sister Sabaupan to the airport with the APs.  
We got up at 3;00 on Sunday Morning to send Sister Jones and Sister Hepworth to the airport with the Office Elders.
Those young men work SO hard, and very often get almost no sleep at all.  We are SO grateful to them.
We took these pictures of damage along the street the Temple is on.  One thing we found really interesting was how they just take it all in stride.  As soon as the storm passed, they went to work   Lots and lots of manual labor.  Cutting, cleaning up. I hate to think so, but I suspect that they see it as an opportunity.  All the free fire wood, just sitting there for the taking!  All the things that blew around or are now broken, that they can recycle.  

ON THURSDAY, I am sitting in the office, and the phone rings.  A young man introduces himself, and tells me that he is calling from the US.  "We are desperately trying to get in touch with my in-laws.  They are serving in Quezon City, and they are in Antipolo.  We just need to know that they are alright.  We tried the US Embassy, but they are not answering".  

I said, "Johnsons, or Jardines?"  

I told him, "they are fine.  I expect them here in the office any time now.  They are coming in to pick up their repaired truck. The Embassy wouldn't know where they are, but I do. Shall I have them call you?"

"YES!.  They are alright?"  

"They were fine a little while ago when she texted me."  

So, when the Johnsons came in, I said to her,'CAll HOME, ET!'

I don't know if it was funny or not, that none of our children showed the least bit of concern! One said, "There is a typhoon?"

SO, things are pretty much back to normal.  We have power and AC in the office again, All our missionaries are finally at home, and we put in a 12 hour day today, getting caught up.  

I did make one very slight suggestion to President Revillo this afternoon.  I think it would be a good idea to 



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