Friday, September 19, 2014

Hello, Elder Hall?

Please tell President that he will need to change our assignment again. We are not coming back!

Anniversary Trip, Mindoro Island, Sept 5-8, 2014

Elder and Sister Horsley, serving down there since January, picked us up at the airport at about 7:00 am and took us to the hotel.  We checked in, changed, went out to see the island.  Pretty, don't you think?  Rice fields, mountains, and ocean surf.  
 Planting the rice.  

This was the view from the veranda of our room.  

Walking on the beach the day we arrived.  The island out there has a name, but we did not learn it from the natives.
Main steps of the Hotel? Inn? House? B and B?  Not sure.  It was nice though.  Very clean. We all stay in the same room when we go down there--room 4, right  by the office.  Ocean view, veranda, big clean CR, TV (the first we have seen in a year.  We watched about 5 minutes.) 
We watched this much longer.  The people living right on the beach, trying to launch their fishing boat.

Just a couple of beach bums!
 The Hotel will cook breakfast for you if you tell them the day before.  Elder and Sister Horsley came early on Saturday morning and ate with us on the veranda.  Really good.  
Friday,  we went driving out of the city for some sight-seeing, went to the open market, picked up lunch at a small Mexican restaurant, 

The Carabao and I both felt pretty relaxed.  Just chilling?
WE drove out to a school, built for the Mangyan minority, who number about 55,000 on the Island.  They are still quite isolated, send their children to school only until they can read, and live off of the land.  Not farming-- weaving and fishing from the natural bounty there.  The men often wear loin cloths and they look very different from the Filipinos we are used to seeing.
This was the garden area at the Hotel.  My view from the hammock.

Then, that night, we walked around the block to another resort and had a very nice dinner on the porch.  They "wined and dined" us like royal guests.  Well, maybe no wine!

Saturday, a little shopping, a lot more sightseeing, and then the Horsleys and the Barlows took us to dinner (again!) for our Anniversary.  Happy 46th!  We have certainly had anniversaries that were not so happily memorable.  (#1, for example.  Vernal, Utah : Small baby, small hotel room, no place yet to live, and no family around to get settled.)

See the little person in the middle, behind the gate, watching us?

This fishing boat was getting ready to go out.  They are loading the hold with ice, carried from a truck, in laundry baskets, down the sand and through the water to the  boat, lots and lots of trips!

There was a man in the ocean, washing the pallets they sleep on, and then he lays them out on the beach to dry in the sun.

Sunday they picked us up really early, and we drove out to two branch Sacrament Meetings.  First to Rizal, who meet at 9:00 in a lovely little house the church leased and remodeled for them.  

While we were there, we were able to deliver a mission call to a very excited young man leaving soon.

Then we drove out to Calintaan, another branch that meets for Sacrament Meeting at 11:00.  And, we had 2 more mission calls to take there!

The People mostly farm, raising rice, or fish, to survive.  A few, of course, have small businesses as well. 

 The counselor in the Branch Presidency happens to have a tractor for farming.  On Sunday, though, it has another job.

Church Bus!  

Two Sunday nights per month, the Barlows entertain the missionaries serving there in San Jose for dinner.  They provide, but the young missionaries do most of the cooking.  Here they are, after a great meal (of rice, of course, with Adobo)  ice cream, and other goodies.  We loved it. 

And on Monday Morning, Elder and Sister Horsley picked us up early and took us back to the airport.  Time to go Home, and back to work.  They are truly one of the blessings we have received for our service on this mission.  We love them.
They go home in October.  The Philippines will be a little bit "less fun" with them gone.

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