Sunday, June 19, 2016

Learning about our New Environment...

What is a Lahar?
I learned a new word...lahar!  It is a moving fluid mass composed of volcanic debris and water.  We went to a lahar...or at least the remains of an active lahar. It looks like a dry river bed with bridges that cross over it.  One bridge is even buried! In reality it is volcanic ash and 'pumice' stones that crush to make more ash.  There are heavy trucks that work here each day to bring the sand in to make bricks for the houses (I think that's what they are doing). 

The picture just looks like Donna and I had another beach day!

We have been assigned to do sister missionary apartment checks in the two zones closest to us.  This week we went out with the couple that used to do this area so they could show us the ropes.  Half way through the inspection, I turned to Donna and said, "I don't want to do apartment checks!"  Elder Wright was fixing a toilet that wouldn't flush!  

I have been trying for weeks to get good pictures of what I call Bandits!  Even though it is 90 degrees out and 90 percent humidity, the Filipinos cover their bodies with clothes.  We think it is because 1) they don't want the sun to darken their skin and 2) they cover their faces and noses because of the slow traffic with heavy exhaust fumes. I would probably do the same thing, but it sure looks funny!!!  It doesn't matter whether they are working construction, driving, or just sitting around.  We even had a Bandit painting the trim on our house this week.
My Bandits!!!
Another oddity that I shared on Instagram, is the drying of rice on the sides of the streets.  Rice fields are irrigated.  I guess the rice is very wet after it is harvested.  We live on the National Highway.  As we drive, we often see the rice being dried on the sides of the road!  This week Donna stopped long enough for us to get a great picture of young men raking, shoveling, and then bagging the dry rice from the highway...and another bandit!  Just another oddity.
bagging rice from off the highway!

I do realize that everywhere we travel, we will discover oddities or customs and things we are not used to doing or seeing or eating.  We are half way around the world from Arizona, and we are discovering all kinds of oddities.  These are just a few!

We are loving our experiences and the people of the Philippines.  We love serving the Lord.  And I love that I brought family with me this time!

Don Epperson...we love you!
Today is Father's Day.  This is the father of all fathers!!  He was a great example to his 6 children and all that knew him.  This week just happened to also be his birthday and our parent's wedding he has been on our minds!  We know that he is watching over us.  We love you, dad!

Transfer week is next week!  We are receiving 19 new missionaries and have 14 departing this time.  We have been busy getting ready for this. I went a little crazy when my printer didn't recognize my computer for a day and a half!  I had many papers to make and print for both the departing and the new missionaries!

We would love to hear from you, our friends and family, so that we aren't totally out of the loop for the 18 months we are gone.
Hint: our emails are below...

A mission is a great thing!  

You are loved and thought of often!  May your life be blessed!
Sister Sisters Donna and Diane


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