February 23, 2013
Thursday the 21st we left the MTC and KristyAnn picked us up at Lexus of Lindon after we turned in the last of our two cars. We spent Thursday night trying to get our bags to the prescribed weight of 50# for the stow-away bags and 16# for the carry bags. We got fairly close and it turned out that they didn’t weigh the carry on and the two stow-away bags were 49# and 51#.
Friday morning we went to the temple with KristyAnn and met Laura and Tammy Pinnock there. Matthew was officiating and while we were in the chapel waiting to go into the endowment room, we were chosen to be witnesses. I was sure that Matthew had told the person making the choice that we were his parents and he wanted him to place us in that position. Matthew was as surprised as we were and it was wonderful to have our son in that position and our being so chosen. It was a wonderful session and on one occasion I turned around and in looking at those in the session, I recognized Richard Winder who I hadn’t seen for many years. I caught his attention and it was a wonderful reunion. In the Celestial room, he brought his wife Barbara Winder over and she was as sweet as ever. Nettie told her that I was always in love with her when I was a young man and she laughed a bit. I can’t help but think that meeting them was important because I had wanted to write them to let them know we were going on our mission. When I was 14, Richard was my home teaching companion and he was always 100% faithful. I’ve used that example many times when I’ve talked about the value of Home Teaching and I told him so at our meeting. He seemed to enjoy hearing that. I believe he is about 90 and they seemed very alert and happy to see me. They have both been very faithful servants in the church with many callings. I believe his most notable calling was Temple President and hers was the Church General Relief Society President. They are a wonderful couple that we have always loved.
We met Laura for lunch at 12:30 and enjoyed a unique meal of “dirt burgers” and “cleansing drink”. I enjoyed both – very good for us. That night we spent with Matthew and his family. We had pizza together and watched some old Myth Buster movies – funny.
We awoke this morning at 2:30, got ready and arrived at the airport at 4:15. After worrying about it for several days (I don’t know why), we flew out to Huston at 6:00. We are now sitting in the Huston airport waiting for our flight to Trinidad – it leaves at 3:00. We expect to arrive at the Port of Spain airport at 10:30 tonight and Elder Lindorf will pick us up at the airport and take us to our apartment.
We are now without a car, and are many miles from our home. The condo in St George is rented out and an attorney is in our office for the next 18 months. I left Grassy Green in Anthony’s hands and hopefully he, with David’s help will keep it green and the trees watered. Our cat Golden is living with Kathleen in St George and she says he now owns the house. He ate their pet fish, beat up their two dogs and lives on top of their living room cabinet. She said he stares at them with disdain but seems to have somewhat adjusted to a new life. He and Sharman have bonded – who would have thought that could happen.
Graduating class in iMOS for computer office work
Graduating class for effective proselyting
The flight from Huston was long and tiring. It was six hours but sitting in one spot was driving me crazy so I tried walking up and down the aisle a lot. I sat next to a handsome large black man from Trinidad. He was returning from a conference in Houston with other oil rig engineers. After not talking for the first half, we finally hit it off and spent quite a bit of the remaining time talking about his work and my being a missionary. He said he was familiar with the Mormon Church and had read a bit of the Book of Mormom. I took down some contact information and anticipate checking back with him.
We arrived in Trinidad at 10:30 pm and it took us about an hour to get through customs. The other senior couples said they were so worried about our getting through customs that they had several prayers on our behalf. Their prayers were answered and everything fell in place. Elder Lindorf met us at the exit and drove us to our apartment. We arrived exhausted at about midnight. The apartment was not clean and badly kept up. We finally got to bed at about 1:00 am and I was so stressed I couldn’t sleep. AT 3:00 am I was sitting on the edge of the bed wondering if our family would be upset if we were to fly back home in the morning – my frustration was over the quality of the living quarters and we didn’t think there was any way we could live here. The Mission President said we could fix it up and we hope to do that with carpets, paint and a few curtains.
We are starting to adjust