I could say I have not written much because life has been dull. But it has been anything but dull.
Don and I finished shopping for apartment & office furniture we will need in Makeni
and then we took Sister Clawson with us to get her approval for what we picked out. It
is cheaper here to have furniture made than to buy something that has been imported.
So we are having two beds, 2 wardrobes, 2 study desks made and a couch reupholstered.
All couple apartments have two bedrooms so they can have the mission
president and his wife, or other senior couples, stay with them. It isn't cheap setting up
an apartment. Hopefully, this apartment and all its furnishings will be used for many
years to come by many senior couples. We were told in one of our meetings with the
general authorities that 78% of all senior couples who apply to go on missions do not
qualify to go out of the country they live in due to health. That is really too bad. Africa,
and I am sure other places in the world, are in desperate need of senior couples. There
are many different kinds of missions and the Lord will use everyone according to their
capabilities - whether in the country they live in or abroad. People need loving
We spent two days in Makeni this week with an overnight. The appliances were
delivered and Don connected them all. We were so excited to get a washer and dryer.
In Makeni we will be on electricity. Here in Grafton we have a generator and it only
runs at night. The generator isn't strong enough to power all the electricity we need to
run the appliances so in order to wash one load most everything else has to be turned
off in our house and the house across the street. And the dryer never did work, so we
hang our laundry all over the house. So we sat in front of the washer and watched it
wash clothes and pretended it was a sci-fi movie and then we watched the dryer and
the washer both work at the same time. Amazing! It felt like we were at a laundryMat.
When Don is out running he sees all kinds of people and one young man called to him
and asked him about the red rag he was carrying. Don explained it was used for wiping
the sweat off the top of his head. That was OK because that meant he was not a
member of a rival gang. Don asked him what color his bandana should be. The young
man pulled out a blue bandana from his pocket and said "it should be this color". Don
replied "I'm a Chelsea (a premier soccer team) Fan, I am blue (their team color)". The
young man responded happily "I like Chelsea, too". Don continued his run in peace.
He was almost home when he was passing a house and he heard "Mr. Don, I need to
talk to you". Don invited the young man to walk with him. The young man asked Don
to help him with his school fees. Don gave a heavy sigh, and told the young man that
we get so many requests for help with school fees that we just can't help everyone. We
When we are at the office, we go to a nice little garden in the mission compound that
has concrete benches to eat our lunch. The Mission Compound sits on a hill so we can
look down and see a lot. Yesterday, we were having a peaceful lunch when suddenly
there was a lot of commotion and people were running from all directions to a
basketball court adjacent to the mission compound. There were men with canes
(switches) and they began beating on one man. There were a lot of people, many with
canes, but only a few used the canes they were carrying. We have no idea what made
everyone so mad. They were all talking/yelling at the same time and even the native
on-lookers could not understand them. It was "mob-justice".
Just as I am writing this, the young woman who came last week to ask for help with her
school fees came again. I explained to her again that her mother had already made
arrangements with the school to pay for her books and that we are not going to buy
them. She cried. I asked her if she could share books with someone and she said "yes, I
share but I cannot bring them home". My heart broke, but I stuck to my guns. After
she left, I told Don that I am going to go see her mother again. He agreed I should.