Well, we now can say we've been to Bali! We can also say we've been to Pigeon Forge, Tenn. And guess what, they are both full of tourists!!!!! We don't mean to burst your bubble, and we certainly don't mean to sound ungrateful, and we did see some beautiful country, and it was an informative and sociable conference, and we will send some nice pictures your way; BUT, WE WERE REALLY GLAD TO GET BACK TO SOLO!
Maybe it was the fact that we had to get up a 3 a.m. to get to Jogja on time for our plane. However we really enjoyed that plane ride because we went with the Barnards, a new "missi" (that is how they say it in Indonesia) Couple from Tasmania. Actually, they served a mission to Indonesia and were in Solo in 2008. They said they would serve another mission IF they could come back to Indonesia. But the President put them in Jogja because there are already 12 missionaries in Solo and Jogja only had 4. They will be tremendous there. They speak Australian! Just like you think they would speak, with the "mates", "gudaiys" and "prawns" (for shrimp). So delightful! We had a great time with them. We stayed at Sully Resort, not exactly 5 stars, but just fine, and we at a lot of Balinese food (fish Janis). It really was pretty good. THEY HAD DIET COKE IN THE RESTAURANTS!!!! So I guess that made up for all the tourists.
Elder will send some pictures with appropriate headings, and I will tell you what we learned. We all had a subject to cover, such as:
- "PEF/& Employment Resources" by the Kusamarmantos
- "How to Support the Young Missionaries" by the Seiters
- "Humanitarian Work in Indonesia" by the Healys
- "Ideas for Staying Productively Busy" ( I KNOW! I couldn't figure that one out) by the Barnard
- "Family History in Indonesia" by Sister Seiters
- "How to Encourage & Support YSA" by yours truly
- "Teaching English Ideas" by the Beamans
- "Ideas for Companionship Study" by the Keplers.
- "How to Implement the Rescue Effort"
- "Working with Ward Councils", etc.
- "How to use a "squatter" toilet (a hole in the ground with a porcelain toilet seat attached) without splashing all over your feet and ankles"
- "How to Live With Your 'Companion' 24/7"
- "What to cook when you can't buy anything you have ever cooked with"
- "What to fix for lunch in a nation that doesn't know the word sandwich so why would they have anything that goes in one?"
- "How to get laundry clean in dirty water"
- "Feeding the Elders, who eat enough to feed a small army, With a Small pan and 4 dishes"
We returned very late Wednesday night. Thursday morning we did laundry, and collected ourselves. But we were out visiting by afternoon. We went to visit Samsi's husband. Samsi is a bit crazy. She has a problem with telling tales. She told us her husband left her, and that she was raising her son alone. She cried and cried. As soon as we got in the car Bono said she was a mystery. (which was a very nice way of saying she lies) When we asked why, he said that the man that was standing outside the house when we entered was her husband, and a return missionary at that. And that Samsi refuses to let him go to church with her. Well, now he is in the hospital with what sounds like a serious lung disease (he has been coughing up blood). We went Thursday and Friday because he is very sick.
Last week I failed to tell you about s dear sister from Solo 1 ward, Sister Suyati Teguh only 67, who was hit by a "motor" (scooter) and suffered a head injury. We went to see her last Thurs. at the hospital. She passed away while we were in Bali, and we missed the funeral because they have to bury by 24 hours, (Javanese tradition and just plain practical because no one can afford embalming). So we went to the family home on Thurs., also. This sweet woman was one of the Solo Pioneers. She joined the Church in 1974!!! In 2008 all the "pioneers" went to the temple together. They showed us the picture. Wow!!! There were about 30 or 40 counting some spouses. We read from the 138 section of the Doctrine and Covenants about the "noble and great ones" saved for this dispensation. These pioneers certainly qualify as that.
On Friday we attended, as always, DDM. Now, last week Elder Gilbert asked me if I had ever heard of Hudson Bay Bread. No, I said. Well, he is from Michigan, Kalamazoo in fact, and Hudson Bay Bread is a big deal there. So I googled it. It is sort of a Nature Valley Granola Bar, except fatter and chewier, and you eat it with peanut butter, and jelly, or raisins or chocolate chips. So, that is what the Elders got this week for DDM. The "Bule" elders snarfed it up, Bono loved it, but I'm not sure about the Indonesian Elders. However, Elder Gilbert was very happy. On top of that, this stuff would be wonderful baked thinner, crunched up to make Fruit and Yogurt Parfaits, or crumbled up for granola like cereal. I had to thank Elder Gilbert for the inspiration. The recipe is a keeper.
We hurried home after DDM, because Elder Gilbert and Elder Mocodompis asked if they could teach an investigator at our apartment. This fellow is Bishop Catur's cousin. So at 4 p.m. we welcomed those 2 Elders plus Elder Secrist. Elder Purnawan, his companion, is a Zone Leader and was out of town. Well, the cousin did not get here, but we had such fun waiting. We had Elder Mocodompis reading Fox in Socks, and Wacky Wednesday. We laughed so hard, and so did he, at the tongue twisters in Fox in Socks. Not exactly a spiritual feast, but all English speaking Indonesians should read that book.
THEN, Bono came to get us, and we took him and Diah, and former District President Agus and Indah his wife, out for pizza. It was Bono's birthday, and Diah's was 2 weeks ago. It was such fun. These are 4 of the greatest people you would ever want to know. Indah is Diah's sister, so that made it even better. I had baked a chocolate oatmeal birthday cake that had chocolate chips and ground cashews sprinkled on top. MMMMMmmmmm. So that was great fun, too.
Today we attended church at Kapatihan. While we love every ward we attend, we seem to feel most comfortable there. The Jebres Ward has asked us to teach an English class. We were concerned because the full time Elders already teach 2 classes each week at that building. However, those classes are free English classes for the public, and most attendees are non-members, and the Elders are not allowed to teach about the church. They are just English teachers. (Does this sound familiar, Matthew?) What Jebres wants us to do is teach Gospel English. They want to be able to serve in the Church and use English. They have asked the Banjasari Ward to join in, so we will probably be doing this on Fridays around 6 p.m. We will see how this goes... The Elders were a tid bit offended, so we will see if they can help a bit. We also went to see Koraaq, Samsi's husband, in the hospital. Wow! What a change. He was sitting up, and they will probably send him home tomorrow. We hope this will help his desire to be in Church.
Finally, I just want to tell you, on this Mother's Day, how grateful I am to have been born of goodly parents. I had an amazing mother, whose love for us endured to the end, and whose example will go on through generations. I miss her very much, and I think so often of her life and generosity. I am so thankful for all the "mothers" in my life. For my beautiful daughters, those born to me who have patiently raised me as a mother, and those who were adopted in who have also been very tolerant. For my dear, dear sisters, and sister-in-law who bring me such great joy, and remind me of my mother's example. For my "mother" friends who are such fine teachers. I have so many mothers who are all part of who I have become. I love you all, and I would remind you of all the opportunities we have to "mother" every day. There are so many souls who need mothering, nurturing, and patient love. I am so very blessed to know all of you, friends and family, and I wish you a lifetime of mothering days.
"...they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them."