Friday, October 23, 2015

St. Vincent Heritage Day, October 20th, 2015

We were downtown Kingstown on Tuesday October 20th renewing 7 of the missionaries visas at the Passport office.  When we got there we notice that Bay Street was lined with school children.  I asked them what was going on and they told me about the parade.  It was boiling hot that day and the parade was supposed to start at 1:00, but finally started at 3:00 p.m.  Even though it was so hot, the children and parade participants were all having a great time dancing and performing.  It was a fun parade.  Each school followed their contestant for the Miss Heritage Pageant, which followed after the parade.  

 One school group with their queen contestant.  Every school on the island has uniforms.  

I was glad to finally get a picture of these wheelbarrow men.  They are everywhere downtown.  They are hired by people to haul groceries, appliances or whatever people need taken to their homes.  Most people here do not have cars and either walk or take vans to get to town and back to their homes.  There is a lot of walking and these men carry their items for a fee wherever they need to go.  Some of the homemade wheelbarrows are painted bright colors.

Latter Day Saints Charities Container Arrives in St. Vincent

Latter Day Saint Charities sent a container of mens, women's, children's clothes and shoes and blankets to St. Vincent.  It was supposed to arrive weeks ago, but was sent to Kingston Jamaica by accident and finally arrived in Kingstown, St Vincent this week.  We were not able to see the container at the dock because of all the security.  The contents of the container were brought to a government building, Marion House, in three separate trucks and there the contents were put in three storage rooms.  Elder Goddard helps with the bales that weigh about 80 pounds.  It was hard work, especially because it is so hot.  
 The storage units also hold the wheelchairs sent a year ago.  They started with 350 wheelchairs and have about 100 left to distribute by the end of the year.

 A big problem was the location of the storage unit.  There were three steep hills they had to come down.  After the first truck was unloaded, they tried to get it back up the hill.  They were putting rocks under the tires to lift the backend enough to go up the ramp.  They are always in such a hurry and several times the truck fell off the rocks and took off part of the bumper.  It took almost an hour to get it back up the hill.  It was pretty scary.  It was decided to not bring the other trucks down that far, but by then it was dark so the rest of the unloading was done in the dark.

Fort Charlotte

Fort Charlotte is a fortress high on the mountain above Kingstown, the capitol of St. Vincent.  Once used to protect the island from invasion, then turned into a prison for the island.  It is now a tourist stop off and a great place to see a panoramic view of the south end of the island.  Elder Powell and Mikesell take in the view west of Kingstown.
 Chillin' and taking in the view to the east.
 P-day is a great day for the missionaries to laugh and talk about their past week.  They usually don't see each other other than p-day and district meetings.  They love getting together on Mondays, especially the Georgetown elders who are an hour away from everyone.
 Elder Ashcraft is a brand new missionary.  He is a great young man and we are glad he is here.
 Elder Merrell has a knack for entertaining.  Everyone loves his antics and entertaining stories.  

 Elder Anderson, district leader in Georgetown.
 Me and Sister Lometo.
 Powell and Ashcraft

 Elder Dancan and Elder Tulikihakau

 Elder T., one of our two district leaders.  
 The flag of St. Vincent.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Preparation Day at the Botanical Gardens

The school kids love the sister missionaries 
 Sister Lometo
 Elder Sabin and Elder Ashcraft

 Elder Goddard and I know that the botanical gardens would be the last thing these young missionaries would choose to do on a p-day.  But, to be honest, there are not a lot of options for things to do here.  Sister Layton said it best when she said, "We can make anything fun," and they do!  We had a fun guide and even learned a few things.  Some of our favorites were the "blah, blah," tree named for the men listening to their wives. Blah, blah blah blah blah.  The elders had a good time with that one.   The cannon ball tree below which is covered in thorny vines and each flower only last one day and then falls to the ground like a cannon.  We smelled cinnamon tree leaves and nutmeg, jasmine, allspice and other smells I can't remember the name for now.  Mostly we just laughed and had a good time.

 I guess we can't go to a Botanical gardens without a few pictures of flowers.  

Krista's Baptism

Love this sweet 10 year old girl.  We went to family night at her house and listened to her teach the entire Plan of Salvation perfectly.  
 Elder Cox and Elder Tulikihakau were the missionaries that taught her.  She was baptized by Elder Tulikihakau.
 Krista's family
The night we had family night with them, little Omar (in front of Mom) gave the closing prayer and recited the entire Lord's prayer and then added his prayer on the end.  I was so touched by this sweet wonderful family.

Hiking the Volcano

Elder Goddard decided that every three to four months we need to repeat the hike to La Soufriere, the volcano that formed this island but hasn't erupted since the 70's.  By doing this, all the missionaries that come to St. Vincent will have a chance to see it.   I opted to stay home this time.  Once was enough for me.  I hurt for a week after the last time.  The hike is basically straight up and just as hard on the knees and body coming straight down.  These missionaries are so fun.  Elder Dancan and Elder Tuiikihakau also didn't go, so they are not pictured.  Front to back, left to right......Sister Lometo, Elder Merrell, Sister Campbell, Sister Norris, Sister Layton, Elder Lindsey, Elder Mikesell, Elder Anderson, Elder Powell, Elder Cox, Elder Ashcraft, Elder Sabin.  
 Elder Mikesell
 The girls
 Ten of the 13 decided to descend with the help of ropes in the bowl of the volcano.   Many said the smell was so bad in the crater that they wanted to vomit.  I think one did.   
 The last time we went, it was so foggy we could not see the crater.  This time they lucked out and it was a clear day.