Sunday, March 30, 2014

Marso 31

We had a good Sabbath. We attended at Sibalom and met a brother that really impressed us. He lives way out in the hills and has to cross a river to get to the road so he can catch a trike to town. We sat with him and enjoyed the classes. We told him we were impressed by his faithfulness. He is less active and his wife and children are not members. We hope to fix that. His name is Deolito Dalut (pronounced Julito). Please mention him in your prayers. He ought to be a leader by the time Antique District becomes a stake.

The Sibalom chapel is in the middle of town, right next to the town plaza (square and market). They were holding Catholic services at the same time and they were so loud that it was difficult to concentrate on the Sacrament, but we made it through.

Last evening we had the District President and his family come over and President and Sister Aquino and the Sisters and Zone Leaders and Assitants to the President. We ate and they played games and talked. It was tough to have so many warm bodys in the warm house, but it was fun.A crazy picture and a serious one.

Here are some houses we saw last week. Sister Sessions wanted to show a normal concrete house and there is one that is sort of a mansion.

These are two pretty nice places. The vast majority of people live in native huts. The concrete house is typical of one under construction. They will paint them up with bright colors, like carnival colors when completed. Most all have metal roofs and the metal roofs now are brightly colored. This last one is pretty spectacular. We have seen nothing else like it in Antique, but we haven't been further north than Bugasong. They northern point of the island is a tourist destination and may have some spectacular houses.

Interviews today at 10:30 at the branch building. We are pleased to meet with President Aquino and look forward to reporting our progress. Better get showered. We walked this morning and face timed the family. Still hoping to connect with Ryan and his.  Andam

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Sabado Evening
Marso 29

Long day. We at 5:30 . . . the prettiest time of day here. I then hauled the Zone Leaders up to Bugasong to interview 11-12 for baptism. They were then going this afternoon to Dao to interview several more. They are going strong toward a Stake here in Antique.

It was hot out and the Elders had to walk about a mile, zig zagging through rice paddies to get to the farm house (The family name is Celestial, no joke . . .the Elders told them it was a perfect name).

These two guys in the picture carried a rice separating machine across the rice paddies back to where we were waiting in the truck.  They carried it on a bamboo pole. Both men were bare foot and had not an ounce of fat on them.

A little "Hurrah for Israel" photo.

We drove back to San Jose and dropped the Elders off so they could get a bite to eat and catch a jeepney to Dao. We are having company tomorrow night, so we had to go get some things and Sister Sessions is at a Relief Society meeting that is scheduled from 3-7:00 pm. I can't imagine what they are doing. I have to pick her up at the branch building.

Tomorrow we plan to attend at the Sibalom building and start meeting the members and Branch Presidency there. It should be fun. They are the only branch in the district with a choir. Looking for good Sabbath.
Tethered fighting cock next to the house where we waited on the missionaries. There are rooster farms where they raise these birds and they love to see them fight. The Filipinos also love horse and carabao fights. The carabaos push each other like bull elk, until one gives up. Elk fight for minutes. Carabaos fight for half and hour to an hour before one gives up. Here are some preparing a rice paddy near Bugasong today. It was about 99 degrees out there.They are so stinking strong. I saw one pulling a plow yesterday and they were plowing deep. They average about 2300 lbs I am told. The farmers control them with a brass ring through their nose. But they seem to imprint on the farmer and do whatever they are asked.
This is sort of an old guy pulling a little load for an old farer. You can see his nose ring and how they lash the lead to the horn and  off they go. I'd rather have an elephant, but these are pretty cool creatures.Going to read the scriptures. I have not had a chance today. Andam

Friday, March 28, 2014

Sabado Morning 4:56 am
3:00 in Idaho . . .Marso

We had a fun day yesterday. We went to Hamtic and Dao inspecting apartments. The coast line is very pretty, even prettier than up to Bugasong. I walked out on the  beach and felt the water. I have been hearing that the water was warm. I didn't want it to be warm. The ocean, to me, is supposed to be cool. The water was much like the ocean felt in Jamaica, very pleasant. I tasted it. It was pretty much like other places. I know, duh . . .

I picked up some shells and plan to epoxy them to some white plate for a palette. I drew one picture while here. No time. But, as we manage our time a little better, I should get some time to putz around with painting a bit. PICs

We went to Hamtic, to Sister Bertolano's farm again last night. We had a Home Evening with her, her sons, and the Elders. We gave the spiritual thought. We talked about the commandments being gifts/blessings from Heavenly Father and how they relate to Heavenly Father's Plan vs Lucifer's Plan. We tried to make it easy so the children could understand too. Sister Sessions made brownies. They were great, but I think they were too sweet for the Filipinos. We played games and the loser each time had to get a black (lipstick) mark on their face. The one with the most marks before time for treat had to dance. It was pretty fun. The camera was out in the truck, a long way off, so I missed pictures of that, but it was really fun. We will play when we get home.

We played "bebo" (means smart in Tagalog). starting at number 1, the group counts around the circle as far as they can go, but on numbers ending in 3,6, or 9, the number is replaced by sat ying bebo. When there is a mistake, you get a mark on your face. You must listen and think at the same time. 1,2,bebo,4,5,bebo,7,8,bebo,10,11,12,bebo . . . and on.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

This is a photo I want to keep. I was hollering around the hills yesterday, "I love this stuff!" and I had found a good walking stick after falling into the gully. I find that 3 points of contact with the earth makes for better stability. You may be able to see that I am soaked through with sweat.

Today is Huwebes (Thursday in Ilonggo). I have been spelling it wrong, and a few other words as well. We went inspecting apartments, driving from San Jose to Sibalom and on to Bugasong. The middle syllable is emphasized on the single word names.

The missionaries were pretty dang good on their area books, which contain records of lessons and investigators and addresses; here it is street names and map like drawings of the buildings. Weird, but that's how they locate things. Tell a trike driver the name of the street and perhaps a name, and they will take you where you want to go.

Sister Sessions rewarded the missionaries for Celestial apartments. That means their area books were up to date, their plan books were in good use, they have a 72 hour kit, they have a stash of emergency funds, and they are working on their English acquisition, and their apartments are clean as possible. They loved it. I don't think they get Oreos and Chips Ahoy cookies often. You'd think she gave them gold.

We took the Elders in Bugasong to lunch. They had pizza and Halo halo. That is a sort of milkshake type thing with purple ice cream, coconut milk, pinaple, banana, kiwi, shaved ice, beans, and jello chunks. Halo halo means "everything". They are not bad, but the beans and jello chunks sort of put me off. I had Pepsi and so did Sister S. She ate pizza with the Elders, but I ordered milk fish and rice. Big mistake. The rice was okay, but the fish stank.

We drove around some after dropping the Elders off so they could get to work. The area from Bugasong north is prettier the further you proceed north. We went about 30 kilometers and turned back. We went to the store and bought cookies for tomorrow's inspections and Sister Sessions met with the San Jose Sisters about their dresses for Foreignoy. We are tired, but it is a good tired again. Tomorrow we will get the chance to teach again and will go back to the mountains for Family Home Evening with the sisters we taught yesterday. We look forward to the fun.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Marso 26th

What a great missionary day. This is what we have been waiting for. We walked early, then went and checked on the Sisters. They texted us, but did not return our answering text. They were fine, just wanted Sister Sessions to help them with making skirts for the Foreignoy thing next Wednesday. We then picked up the Hamtic Elders and went off to the hills.

We taught two Sisters and parts of their families. The Elders taught in Tagalog, but we could pick up a little and we were called upon to bear testimony to the law of chastity and what it has done for us in our lives and the Plan of Salvation. We went to Sister Butolano's house first. They own a farm in the mountains out of Hamtic. Here are some pictures of her and her family with the missionaries and the surrounding area. We had to drive down a jeep road to get back in to them. I loved it.
Sister Bertulano is staying off coffee and has been having head aches. We gave her a blessing. She has a baptism date April 26. She is feels the Spirit and recognizes the Gospel. Here are some more pictures around their house:Yes, I did fall down going down the bank. The Elders were concerned, but Sister Sessions calmed them down telling them that if I didn't fall down, it was no adventure. Reminds me of climbing around with the Elders in the hills of Jamaica. I do love it so.
Helen (Sister Saraza)'s house they are building. They were the second lesson on down the canyon. Here is she and here daughter. There was another little girl, but she was to shy, but I got a picture of her up stairs in the old house they are leaving.
Elders Christensen and Cabatuando are very masterful teachers. They shared the lessons and testified for each other. We told Elder Cabatuando he better study his English as he will likely be a General Authority from the Philippines in a few years. They are good ones . . .

Humpin' the boonies:I found a walking stick after falling down the path. I know I look okay here, but I was dirty and sweating like a mad man. I was wet through my shirt and pants. There was a little breeze, so it wasn't so bad. It was one great afternoon. The Sisters are coming over tonight for some sewing help. We have some ice cream for them.

Did I report cooking the shrimp last evening? I cut off the heads, peeled them, veined them, and cooked them in olive oil and some garlic. That is all we had, but man were they good. I need to get back to the fish market. Heck with dorado . . . I'm going shrimp for a while.

I am thankful for the missionary experience today. Both Sisters felt the Spirit, as did we. They both have baptism dates. It will be the start of celestial families. Dang cool.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Martes, Ako 25th ni Marso

We attended district meeting this morning and had a good time with the Elders. The Sisters are in the other district and we alternate. The Elders we met with are from Busalong and Sibalom. They are very sharp.

We roll played investigators wih them. One of the teachings district leaders tried to get across was introducing themselves to new contacts using the missionary purpose:  "Invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end." I think I quoted it correctly. My Preach My Gospel is two rooms away and I am too lazy to check. Anyway, it is a great introduction . . . "We are here to invite you to. . . "

We went to the bank and figured out how to pay our pickup rent and we found the port of San Jose Buena Vista after lunch.

The dock/peer is about a hundred meters long and they don't use it much. It is on the point of a little bay in which all the local fishing fleet is moored. I bought shrimp yesterday for a tiny amount and will try to cook them tonight. I am thankful for the fishermen. My stomach is killing me from from the Pinoy food, or water, or both. Anyway, the dorado was great and no problem to my stomach.

We took some pictures of the students coming home from school in their uniforms. There are so many different color skirts, depending on the school attended. And, here are some other pictures just for fun.
 Jeepneys are crazy. I love them. They get all decorated and crammed with people.

I walked this morning with an old woman named Li and an young woman joined us, a white girl, from Montana by way of California. She is in the peace corps. Sister Sessions stayed home to get ready for district meetings. We had a great time talking and I invited them to a missionary outing we are having. I hope they come. We have invited a good many people. We will see if any of them come. Hope so.

That's the news from the Island of Panay. We had a storm and thunder this afternoon. I keep asking the Lord to make it a little less hot/humid. He has answered thus far. It is cooler, but the rain makes is plenty humid. Andam

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Marso 24, 2014

P-day. The power went out about midnight last night and came back on this morning about 9:00. We went walking and the streets were pretty deserted. There were some people at the athletic field. One guy sings as he runs. He sings loudly, so you can hear him across the track. He zips buy, and says, "Health good." I give him a thumbs up.

We had some fruit for breakfast and face-timed some of the kids that were home. It was good to talk to them. We tried Ryan and Amy, but no answer.

We attended church yesterday. It was a treat to have a normal church day. With traveling and District Conference, we had not taken sacrament for nearly a month. It was missed. Yesterday we took sacrament and in the meeting I had the chance to introduce us a little. Sister Sessions spoke on Visiting Teaching. An old man bore his testimony. . . I am pretty sure. He spoke native, so we understood little, but I did feel the Spirit. They don't mind emotion in their speakers, I am pleased to see. I shared 3 Nephi 5:13 and had a hard time getting though the verse. I told them Sister Sessions and I, and that they ought to be, trying to be like Mormon and become disciples of Jesus Christ. Mormon was a disciple, we want to become such.

We attended the family history class, because Sister Villavert (District President's wife) asked us too. She is working with deaf members. The deaf members (about 13 of them) have sort of taken us under their wings. They are doing family history and preparing to go to the temple in two weeks. They are trying to teach us sign language and we really enjoy their spirit and loving ways. We wish we could go with them and attend the temple with them.

It appears that we will spend a day (Saturdays) per week in the family history center at the church in San Jose. We may add a day as we find out if we are needed. We also found out that we may have more that 5 apartments to inspect for the mission, and we are finding out about that in the next few days. We are looking to be busy. I am not going to use the MTC language training as I can't commit to their time constraints. I will keep studying on my own, amat amat.

Some pictures: Here is a jeepney from Sibalom. This is an old one, but there are several of these around; sort of diesel trucks/busses. They get pretty fancy, down to very plain. This one has the side curtains on because it rained yesterday all day. This one was parked at the market in Sibalom. Most of the time these vehicles are loaded with people, produce, animals . . .  guys love to stand on the back or sit on top for the air to blow their hair back.

This is a sari sari store (referred to as a chongi). They are literally all over. This is a pretty nice one. They sell all sorts of stuff, pop in a bag, beer in a bag, balout (sp?), candy, cigarettes, noodles, chicken, little packets of everything from shampoo to little candies. We have no idea where they buy all the stuff wholesale, but these are often right next to each other along the roads.
This is the entrance to a catholic cemetery near the ocean. They put people in concrete boxes and stack them up. The more wealthy have maybe a little building and iron fences. We have no idea what happens to the non-catholic people. There are millions, so we know they die.

A strange thing, it is difficult to get to the ocean. We looked for streets that takes one to the ocean, to a peer, or docks, or a fishing village. The only places that have access are south and east of us many kilometers. Around San Jose, the ocean does not play a big role in the lives of the people. From Hamtic to Dao and on around to Iloilo, it appears that fishing is very big. I think rice farms are the big thing around here.

We are cleaning the house today and probably taking a little drive to look some more. I hope to stop by the fish market again.

Sister Sessions fixed the dorado yesterday. It was really good. We had corn and noodles too. The fish was good, the corn had an odd taste and the noodles were bland. We will have to learn to cook pinoy dishes. I do like the fish though. I may try some shrimp today.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Marso 22

We went to a baptism in Hamtic this morning. There was a family of 7 baptized, but no brother involved. We don't know the whole story.

We got home a few minutes ago and I checked the e-mail. Heidi tells me that some pictures are not coming through on the blog. I have tried to use the i-pad at times and one would think it would be simple to add pictures, but I have had nothing but problems when using the i-pad for blogging. I am trying the laptop again and here are a few pictures we took on the way to Hamtic this morning. One is of a farmer's house out in the middle of what I think are rice paddies.

There is a river close by and they must flood the paddies, then wait for them to recede enough to plant. The other is a picture of fishing boats parked up in the said river mouth. Checking to see if the pictures get through.

The last is of the baptism. Just for fun. I know you don't know any of these folks, but this is the Hamtic building, one of three nice buildings. The other two branches meet in, not so nice, buildings, but they are easily accessible by walking or trike ride.

Elder Nambio and the baptizees. . . Guapo Missionary (by his own admission). The five older sisters all bore their testimonies. There were a few tears, but I thought how brave they are as brand new members to share their testimony. It was a pretty good meeting . . . pretty good only because we can't understand most of what they are saying.
Let me know if the pictures come through.

Marso 21
We walked this morning. In the middle, I had to hit the restroom. They are marked "he
"He", "she". They were locked. I asked around and there were some open along the other side of the track. There are no doors, no toilet paper, no toilet seats, but there is a huge bucket of water to wash ones self and to poor in to flush. Fortunately a carried some wipes with me this morning, in case. I will start doing so as a habit.

We delivered media to the elders this morning. Then we were dead out of things to do. The AP's stopped over and brought me a book to study Tagalog and a Preach My Gospel in Tagalog. I contacted the MTC and should start studying Tagalog Monday. There are so many dialects that I decided that Tagalog is sort of the base language, so that is where I'm heading.

Sister Sessions cooked an American breakfast for Elder Stacy and Elder Matalang. She cooked bacon, eggs, and hot cakes. Elder Stacey was totally familiar, but Elder Matalang used no butter and a tiny dribble od syrup on his cake. Then he ate another with nothing. He ate a goodly share of bacon. It was fun to have them and they helped us set up the magic jack. We tried to call Amy, but got her answering machine. We think it will work though.

Sister Sessions is speaking in church Sunday, so she is in preparation mode and not much company. I read scriptures and studied Tagalog and took a nap. We went to Chow King for dinner. I had noodles and Sister S. Had sweet and sour and pansit and rice. We had coke zero and it came to 230 pesos, about $4.25. Everyone was getting off work and school kids were heading home. Hence the traffic. Trikes were solid. (See pic)

We took a little ride to Hamtic, about 5 kilometers south and found a little beach where fishermen pull their boats out. I tried to get some pics, but it was too dark. I did get a little sunset over the palms.

We found a farmer's/fishermen's market on the way back. It was clean and fun. A lady tried to sell us about everything, but we ended up buying half a Dorado for about 70 cents. I filleted it and will try some for breakfast. Dorado is supposed to be great. I hope so. The fishermen's wives sell fish along the highway. We hope to eat a good deal of fish as it is a dang good deal and fresh. They have about everything. I want to get a little training on shelling and cooking fresh shrimp.

Power went off a free minutes ago. The whole town was dark. The trikes don't turn on their lights anyway. They thing it gets them better gas mileage. I bet they turned on their lights during our little black out. Well, that's Friday. . .

Thursday, March 20, 2014

20 Marso 2014

We got up early and drove to Iloilo this morning. I got permission from the President to leave our area and go get some items we were unable to find here. We bought lots of stuff and hauled a load of books, pamphlets, cards and mail back to the zone. It was a fruitful day. I had a good conversation with one of the men helping us at the MS mall. I gave him a card and the number for Elder Matalang. Who knows if he will call, but maybe he will go to the website and get straight information regarding Mormons, if nothing else.

We bought an air conditioner to help cool the place down. There is one in the bedroom that about freezes us out at night, but the place has too much square footage for that one to cool the whole place. I hope this little one we bought will help cool the place down so we can be a bit more comfortable.

We went to MacDonalds for lunch. It was packed. We sat with a German man who told me he was an atheist. He said, "Do you believe?" I showed him the badge and had a hard time not saying "duh!" I told him that I did, indeed, believe.

On the other side of us was an elderly Filipino couple from Fremont, CA. We talked to them and they seemed to enjoy the attention. We shook hands with both of them and left. We had a little communication problem, or I would have asked them to listen to the message. I was out of cards. We have got to get sharper. . .

We stopped by the mission office and picked up a bunch of media for the zone. The Zone is putting on "Fornoi" on April 2 in San Jose. The missionaries will wear native "Baron" clothing and sing and invite the people to participate and investigate. It ought to be fun. President Aquino gave it his blessing and he is happy that the missionaries are getting creative. I will try to add some pictures of them in native costume tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Marso 19

Yesterday we had district meeting in the morning. The Zone, divided into two districts, met at the church at 8:00 am. It was fun to be back involved. The missionary companionships reported their progress for the last week and we did some training. It was fun.

The Zone leaders went with us in the afternoon and evening to visit the branches and the missionaries attached to the branches. We started at Sabao (sp?), just north of San Jose. The church is fairly new, but it is smack in the middle of where they hold market and garbage surrounded the grounds. We could only get to the church by going through back dirt roads. It was a little disheartening to tell the truth.

We then drove to Busalong and met at the branch meeting building shown above. The missionaries there are great and talented and obedient. The top picture is of the little building adjacent to the main building where priesthood and gospel doctrine meet. It overlooks a large rice field. It is a beautiful green and the ocean is about half a mile back behind the fields.

We went to Hamtic and Dao on the south of the Zone/District and got home about 9:00 pm. It was tiring, but fun. We met a guy in Busalong that we liked and had a good discussion and prayer. He is a great guy and he told me he liked me and felt comfortable with me. He said he would attend church with me when we come up that way. I feel a kinship with him, and Busalong in general.

Hot and muggy. We have been skyping with everyone except Ryan. If you are reading this Ryan/Cami, find a way for us to get in touch with you. We go to Iloilo tomorrow for supplies we can't get here. So, we would call/skype/facetime Friday morning (Thursday evening your time). E-mail is now working. Have not had time to check facebook. All is well . . .
Marso 16, 2014

Writing this on word pad because we have no internet yet. We ordered it at the Gaisano's mall with the Elders Friday, but there was a problem with the lines/cables coming to the house. The cable was separated. The internet providers worked until into the night last evening (Sabado evening) and got it hooked up today while we were at church. We will have to get a router tomorrow.

We had an Area 70 teach in District Conference for two days and President Aquino. It was tough because they shift from English to Hiligaynon, to Tagalog in the same talks. We picked up some, but not much. The benches were hard, but there was lots of leg room. The chapel in San Jose, Antique is nice and new.

We went with the Elders Friday evening to the Branch President's house and visited him. He is the water supplier so we bought 15 gallons of water from him. He is a character and his wife. They have a wonderful family. We sat outside under a wood canopy and visited. Whenever you visit members, they get something for you to eat, whether or not they can afford to feed you. We had pancit and coconut milk. Pancit is noodles and they were made from sweet potatoes. They were delicious and no gluten. Sister Sessions was not big on the coconut milk.

The Assistants were with us and the Zone leaders. They helped us all day and evening, get settled in.We went to different restaurants and tried many different things. Most were great. Some, not so great. We took them to pizza Saturday evening. That was a treat for all of us. We were tired of rice.

I walked Saturday morning. The landlord worried that I left the compound and went walking by myself. I headed up the highway to the northeast and got about a kilometer down the road when the fields opened and I could see the distant mountains. A misty cloud rad across the scene and the rice field was emerald green. A carabau (Kara-bow . . . water buffalo) teathered by his nose close to the road. He was muddy and wet from rolling. He looked more like he had skin than a hairy coat. Two snowy egrets followed him closely. I suppose he stirred up food, or they found food in his dung. Not sure. . . but the scene looked like an Asian landscape painting. I stood and looked for a long time.

I talked to a farmer who was picking up something in his field. He had no idea what I was saying. I crossed the road and talked to a little lady who was waiting for a trike or jeepney to ride into town. She told me the farmer was probably picking up seeds, or pulling weeds. I through a few words and her and told her salamat (thanks). She replied, "Sigi" (sig-ee) which means no problem. She was nice . . .probably though I was a crazy white man.

It was a great walk. Most people nodded or said, "good morning" in sort of a sing-songy way, to my
Ma ayong aga.

The house is not as nice as pictured in the e-mails we received from the last missionary couple. Sister S. is changing it around and it is becoming more homey every few hours. We have little lizards that zip around the walls. They eat the ants and small bugs, so we don't have them trooping in. We also have a gecko. We have not seen him yet, only heard him. They say it is good luck to have a gecko in your house. We'd like to see him so we can give him an appropriate name, something biblical we are thinking. He eats the bigger critters like roaches etc. It is fun to have helpful reptiles. There are few snakes on Iloilo I am told. I believe the natives eat/ate them. That is fine with me.

The place is poor. Also, the internet information is mostly wrong. Iloilo is a large city, but not so modern as described. There are many universities, but the children graduate from high school at about level 10 (age 16) They go to universities (more like high schools) and they wear uniforms and graduate from there at age 20. If they study medicine, they go another four years and, if they pass their exam, they can practice medicine. If they can immigrate to the US, they can be nurses with this degree, but not doctors. The government is trying to make a change to model the US schools K-12, then undergraduate college. It is needed, and more rigor.

There are so many people here. They seem undaunted by their condition. They certainly need the Gospel of Jesus Christ. More tomorrow.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Marso 14
Found some of the photos I thought we lost. I really wanted to keep the office Elders welcoming us to the mission home. These are some fine Elders. We love them already. They have been such a blessing getting us adjusted. They will take us to San Jose, Antique this morning.

Yesterday we got our driver's licenses. It was an ordeal. . . Strange physical, photos,questionnaires, money, but we learned a little language. I practiced driving last evening. There are no stop signs, no traffic lights, no speed limits. Lanes are just a suggestion and you pass when you have the guts. Larger vehicles have the right of way. Pedestrians have no status, motorcycles pass on all sides and at any time. Ryan would love this place. The tricycles double as cabs and as trucks. I want one.

Got to get ready to go. Higugma kam'o (I think this means love you). Learning amat-amat (little by little). Halong

 Sister Sessions and I having a bag of soda. They recycle the little bottles, so we bought a couple of small 7 UPs and they pour them inside a plastic bag, add a straw, and you are set. Can't remember the weird name of the little store, but they line the roads.

13 Marso 2014 Huebes Having a tough time with this since I downloaded the new system on the ipad, and I screwed something up on the camera, so I don't have some pictures I wanted to share. It is 3:50 am. A rooster is crowing outside the mission home. He is up early. We went to a bangko (bank) last night with the AP's (Assistants to the President) and changed dollars to pesos. We got a little taste oflife and visited with the AP's. They do drive wildly in Iloilo. More about that later. We are going to get driver's licenses this morning. It will take about 4 hours. After that we are scheduled to meet with the Taylors and President. I will add more later. I wish I could figure out the camera/picture thing. Hopefully the office Elders will help me. President called me to be secretary for the Mission Presidency. I am making an agenda template for them to use in meetings.

Here is a picture of the mission home and President and Sister Aquino with us outside the office today. I threw in a couple of jeepneys for fun. Jeepneys are strange open air buses that cost little to ride and people smat inside them and on top and hang from the back. Note the beautiful flowers along the road behind the jeepney.

A picture of the ward building here in the mission home compound is included here.