Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Long and Winding Road

You might think I’m running out of blog titles.  Not to worry, I have over 500 songs from the sixty’s on my I-pod.  I haven’t even got started.  Last week was one of the busiest and involved the most travel of any week that we have had in the mission.  We were asked to help with flu shots for the mission.  They had planned to give them when they had the big zone conferences but the vaccine did not arrive in time.  We had to cover essentially all of the mission in about 10 days.  Oh yeah, lots of driving. A week ago we did the La Costa Zone that is less than a half hour from our house.  Last Monday we had inspections scheduled for the Este and Maronas zones so we drove all day Monday to get this done.  In the middle of the inspections we were asked to pick up some missionaries from the hospital and take them to their home in Pando.  Pando is part of the Maronas Zone so this more or less worked out.  It was a long day.

Tuesday we drove the nurse back to the Este and Maronas Zones for the injections.  We had to make two trips because the inspections are at each house vs. the injections were done at the Church.  We completed this about 11:00 A. M. which was nice.  Just in time to go back to Pando to take the Sisters back to the hospital for more tests.  Pando is more or less an hour drive from the hospital.  We were about 10 minutes from the hospital when we found out the test had not been cleared yet by the insurance company so we stopped at the pharmacy and picked up some drugs and took them back home.

Wednesday is when the real fun began.  There are three main routes north in our mission, Route 5, 8 and 9.  On Wednesday we took off for Route 9 to visit the Maldonado and Rocha zones.  Sister Paul is our mission nurse.  She and her companion Sister Steenblik accompanied us to do the shots.  The missionaries were there and ready for us so we were able to do it real well.  This was about a 300 kilometer trip each way.  Along the way we were able to help with a few apartment repairs and stop at the panaderia in Rocha for some treats.  I’ll bet that was a surprise that we stopped for treats.

Thursday we traveled to Florida, on Route 5, to finalize the house for the missionary couple that is coming next month.  We were able to make a deal on a good house, so all we need to do now is get the contract signed and get the stuff moved up to Florida.  Florida is about 200 kilometers each way.  The best part of this day was spending it with the Zone Leaders, Elder Vallecillos and Elder Johnson.  They lined up appointments for us and showed us around.  They were extremely helpful and real fun the be with.

Friday was the big day.  We took off for Route 8 to do the shots for the Minas, Treinte y Tres an Melo zones.  Lucky for us, the Melo missionaries came down to Treinte y Tres.  This made it 400 kilometers each way instead of 500.  On the way home we stopped in Minas to have pizza.  This is a local joint that makes pizza as close to USA pizza as we can get.  We really enjoyed it and even have some for another day.  So with all the running around we drove about 2000 kilometers or about 1,250 miles mostly on 2 lane highways without cruise control and a lot of hills, curves and big trucks.  When we got home Friday night I was tired.

One neat thing happened on one of our trips to Pando.  They needed a new front door knob and lock so I took the old one off and went looking for a locksmith.  I found one a few blocks away.   There shop was about 6 feet wide and 15 feet long.  Even though it was small they had everything they needed to help me.  As they were working on the old door knob I had a chance to talk to them about what missionaries do.  They were very friendly and said that they would be glad to visit with the missionaries.  I can’t wait to see how the Sisters do with Fernando and Nico.

Saturday we were beat.  We needed a rest, especially from driving.  We got up at a decent time and while I did the house cleaning, Renee did the cooking for the dinner that we have for the missionaries that are leaving the office for transfers next week.  She started cooking at 7:00 A. M. and was ready at 1:00 P. M. for lunch.  She served roast beef, mashed potatoes, mixed vegetables, orange jello and homemade rolls.  That sounds pretty good until you get to the pear pie for dessert.  The Elders ate like “ravenous locusts”.  After they finished their first piece of pie, Renee offered to let them either eat a second piece of pie or take it home for later.  Guess what, they didn’t want to wait.  Like that was a surprise!

We just got back from visiting with Humberto and Cristina.  She was sitting at the table and talked to us for awhile.   She can move her left arm now and is able to walk by herself although it doesn’t hurt to have a little help.  She really wants to go home.  That is a good sign.  We were so worried that she would not recover but now it looks like she will be home by the end of August.  That will be wonderful.  Humberto states that she really started to get better after she received the Priesthood blessing.  We feel that way too.  The Priesthood is such a blessing in our lives.
I hope you can see from the pictures just how good and happy and fun the missionaries are.  We enjoy every minute with them.  It is especially good when they tell us about the people that they have found and how they are progressing in the Gospel.  Today for Sacrament meeting one of the young mothers spoke about her conversion about 12 years ago.  She found a Book of Mormon in her house and started reading it.  She was able to find the meeting house and the missionaries where she was taught the discussions.  Just as she was about to be baptized, her father died unexpectedly.  In spite of this she was baptized and now is married in the Temple with a wonderful young family.  It was a really neat story.

We are still in winter.  We do have some good days with the sun shining and then other days when it is cloudy, windy, rainy and cold.  It is sometimes a little chilly in the chapel so we and all the others come dressed warmly.  We think that it is supposed to start warming up in about a month.  It won’t be long before we start complaining about the heat.  Such is life.

We love you all and are grateful for your support.  We love the Lord and the Gospel that has been restored on the earth today.
Gordon and Renee


  1. I don't need Mom to make me some pear pie (although I wouldn't turn it down, either), but I could really use some of that roast beef and rolls right about now...

  2. I'm glad the Yankee pants are such a hit. I'm guessing you'll need some new ones by the time you come back.


Please keep comments positive! Gordon and Renee are missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This blog is meant to be a fun way for them to communicate with their friends and neighbors back home.