We have Sacrament meeting with about 25 of the Senior that are still here. Those without specialty assignments like Office, Temple, Family History only recieve 1 week of training and they are off the their assigned Mission. The Sacrament Meeting was Fast Sunday and the Testimonies that were shared were very strong and the Spirit was strong. We have a lot of really dedicated people in our group.
Later that day we had a Mission Conference with everyone at the MTC. The MTC President and his councilors spoke. It was a good meeting.
That afternoon we went to visit my cousin Lynnanne and her husband. I had not seen her for 30 years or so. She live near Houston Texas. It was great to visit with her and her husband. We met them at her parents, my Uncle Carl & Aunt Mable. They live in Benjamin Utah which is just South of Provo.
We started our Office Training. We got and overview of Word, Excel, Outlook and MOS which is a Church software program that tracks Missionaries, Expenses, Housing and other things. It is currently be replaced through out the world with an internet version but it has not made it to Urugauy yet. There were 2 couple learning the MOS program and the rest of the group was learning IMOS. Our training went much faster than theirs did. It was 4PM and the Fire Alarm went off in the building and we all had to evacuate the building. Since we were almost finished with our training for the day the instructors let us go for the day. We went back to our apartment and had just sat on the bed when the wall phone rang. It kind of startled us because it had never rang before. It was the Front Desk operator telling us that we had a visitor. I asked who it was and he said that the person did not want to say. So we went to the Front Desk and as we came around the corner, surprise it was our wonderful Bishop Bigelow from our home ward. He was in Salt Lake City attending a funeral and was so kind to come and see us. If that fire alarm had not been activated we would not have been in our room and the operator said our schedule was mixed up in the computer so he did not think he would be able to find us. It was great to visit with Bishop Bigelow and find out how things are going back at home.
We continued our training on the office programs. The Devotional was given by Gerald N. Lund. he spoke on how to find people to teach. He had some really great ideas.
Wednesday - Thursday
More training on the office programs. We started repacking our suitcases to try to determine what we could keep and what would have to go into the car. Tracey Graham is picking the car up Thursday evening and taking it to her Mom's until our daughter Christina can pick it up when she come to Utah for Michael's wedding the end of July. We finally decided that there was no way we were going to be within the weight limits (50 pounds each) of the suitcases so we pick our biggest 2 and filled them up to the next weight (70 pounds) restriction. We had to pay the overweight fee but it was worth it. We were both allowed 2 check-in and 1 carry-on and a personal item. We max'd everthing out we could.
Our day started at 3:30 AM to prepare to meet the Airport Shuttle at 5:00AM. The shuttle took us to the Salt Lake City Airport where Gregg Spendlove was waiting for us. He just enough time to help us check our bags and get us into the Sky Club where those that travel alot on Delta get pampered and then he had to rush of to catch his flight. I hope he made it.... We caught our flight to Dallas about an hour later and then had about a 3 to 4 hour lay over in Dallas prior to catching our flight to Miami and another 3-4 hour lay over before we caught the all night flight to Montevideo, Uruguay. We arrived at about 9:30AM Saturday Morning exhausted.
We concluded our 29.5 hours of travel time and arrived in Urugauy. The airport building is very small. I would compare it to small city like Walla Walla's airport. It was not as big as I would have expected for a City of 4 million people. We departed the plane down some stairs and got on a bus that took us to the airport building where we all lined up and went through customs and had our passports stamped and carry-on bags scanned. We then went to the baggage claim area and awaited our bags. We got 2 of the 4 quickly but 2 did not show up on the small baggage carosel so we started looking around for them. Keep in mind that we are now in a Spanish speaking country. I found the bags being held by the operator of the x-ray machines. I motioned to him that the bags were mine and he put them back on the belt and ran them through the machine one at a time and them proceeded to tell and to motion for me to open them. He was extremely interested in the many bottles of vitamins that we had packed. I tried to explain that we were going to be here for 2 years but he was not getting it. Finally another traveler bless his heart heard my broken Spanish eplaination and he explained it to the customs official and he let us have our bags. We then went through a door to the other room where there were hundreds of people lined up to greet people. I caught sight of a couple of young Elder's and then President and Sister Da Silva as well. It was great to see familiar people. The Elder's (Powers & Parrage)were the assitant to the President took us to our home and gave us about 4 hours to unpack and rest before they would be by to take us to the President's apartment for dinner. We had just got unpacked and the Finacial Elder's Solomon & Sessions came to help us sign the contract with our Landlady who lives in the home behind ours. Her name is Cristina. Elder's Solomon & Session are assigned to the Buceo ward where our home is located. They took us to a store to buy some cleaning supplies and other things we need to start up a home again. It was really great to have bi-lingual help. Trying to read labels in Spanish and understand what we were buying is very difficult. They were and still are a great help to us.
Later that afternoon we were picked up and taken for dinner at Pres. & Hermana Da Silva's apartment (the Mission Home is being renovated). It was great to get to know them a little better. Pres. Da Silva speaks English pretty well but Hermana speaks very little. We would he would translate to her. They are both very nice people and it will great to work with them. They are about a year or two younger than we are. We were taken back to our home and we slept very well, maybe exhaustion had some thing to do with it.