Our work with our Tongan families is going very well. Lesili is making progress in his language, and Nuku is doing well with reading. We have our ups and downs with all the students but we are seeing progress. We have a new piano student who will start next week. She is a member of the Tau family with only the mother being a member. They all attend church but currently are not ready to move forward with baptism. They are a wonderful family.
Our Elders live next door to a house where the owner has a private WWII weapons hobby. They retuned from doing service this week to find all his large guns etc. outside. Here are some pictures they put on my computer. This is Elder Bair with a 20 mm gun.
Elder Palanite having fun.
On our walk we noticed this nicely kept yard accross from the high school. They have built a lot of homes in the last many years in older neighborhoods leaving quite a contrast between houses.
With a slight turn to the right we see this house right next door.
Sister Paula Carpenter, our relief society president lost her son this week in a boating accident. She called and asked if we could take her to see her son at the morgue. His body was not found for four days and we took her just a few hours after it was found.
We attended the funeral today. Her son was not active and there was no religious service, just a farewell. He had a lot of friends, and a nice family. It was not what one would call an uplifting event. A very interesting cast of characters, as he had lived a pretty wild life before settling down. All his old pot smoking and drinking mates were there too. Following the funeral our Tongan Sisters put on a great feed for everyone there. There was much left over.
I took a quick picture here of the morgue. It was located on the hospital grounds between the boiler room and the railroad tracks. The police indicated they were not happy to bring people to this uninviting location. The places I have had to go on this mission, the jail to visit a member and now the morgue. Who knew.
This is pretty much the extent of Sister Carpenters yard. Elder Palanite mowed her yard while Elder Bair and I washed her car. While we were were at the morgue the Elders washed her windows. They are fine young men.
We drove to Kumara, about 20 minutes south of Greymouth. Here is a rhododendron we saw as we were leaving town. They grow massive here and it does not appear that pruning is a favorite past time here. Some are of course but shrubs in most cases are allowed to grow together and make unkept hedges. Of the fives months we have been here, rhododendrons have been blossoming in four of them. That may be due to our very cool spring.
This is the north side of the Powell's front yard. The blue covered box is a sand box. Directly across is the body of an old Land Rover which has been a thorn in Linda's side since marrying Clark 8 years ago. He has to take the transmission out and then it will be ready for the dump.
Linda Powell and her youngest daughter. We had a very pleasant visit with them. She had a very interesting wedding album as they were married at a replica of an historic mining town. It is one of the local attractions here. It so happened that a national tv station was filming weddings around the country and they had scheduled their wedding when the tv station wanted to come and film. They took film all day and they received a copy.
We have been trying to find a way to spend time with her husband and thought we had the answer. He drives a little racing boat and we thought we could go see him race. We asked her about that and found his boat was not working now and the races are on Sunday. So much for that.
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6 hours ago