Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Update from Mombasa

Dear Family & Friends We've had quite an eventful few wks. The blessings have really been poured out and prayers have truly been answered proving yet another kind mercy from our Heavenly Father. Habari (how are you) we are mzvri sana (very fine). We have been trying to learn alittle Swahili, atleast some greetings. We feel that as long as these people know we are trying they are happy. On the most part the people have so very little but yet seem so happy. Of course you see a lot of very very poor people who you would like to help but can't. But the most valueable help we can give them is the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is more important than anything else that we can give them. As we travel into Mombasa City where the branch is it sore of reminds us of Las Vegas. When your at a stop or busy intersection people are handing out flyers or selling something. Here there is no stop signs or lights but traffic is so heavy your often at a stop. Here they are trying to sell you apples, oranges, sugar cane, jewlry or knives or are begging for money. That's what they do just to survive. They told us these people are very poor but yet they are well dressed. The men all wear trousers or slacks, very few have levi's on and they wear nice dress shirts, maybe a few have t shirts but the women wow they are very colorful, The women wear skirts and jackets and beautiful dresses, some I'd like to have for myself. You see an occasional woman wearing pants but not too many. I think a lot of it is the humidity and skirts are cooler. Most children go to private schools here and it is quite a sacrifice for their families. The school children have uniforms with the same color for both boys and girls. They live at these schools and have little contact with their parents for 3 months. Then they come home for a few days and the other children who aren't rich enough go to public schools but as of now the teachers are on strike because of low wages. It seems so funny that there doesn't seem to be any government help. But the government is corrupt here and they keep money for themselves. Just an update on our accident with the matautu (missionary van). It ended up we pd 41,000 shillings just to be able to keep our truck. $410.00 The mission home will reimburse us. The sad part it wasn't our fault and if you were here you would know what we mean. Seeing that we are white we are suppose to be very rich. The matautu owners are Muslins and they have 3 vans. They estimated they take in 4000 shillings aday but there is a lot more money than that but once you pay the drivers the owners pocket the rest. The owners were nice and the husband works at the prison as a guard. But his wife did most of the talking with us and the police. The husband was not there he was in Niarobi at the time. We did meet him and he seemed really nice. He did cut the bill down about 17,000 shillings. Elder Harris we found out did not have Malaria but him and his companion have Dengue Fever from mosqueito's It's a virus and you can't really treat it. They are to get plenty of rest and eat fruits, veg. soup and drink lots of fluids. They are doing much better now. It's better that they didn't have Malaria, because Malaria has lasting effects for life. The Elder's take a lot of our time up and it's ok because we really love them. 2 got transferred and we've heard from them in emails which was so nice. That must mean they miss us. We have been here alittle over a month, Larry thought he'd include a few of his journal entries. May 28th- boared our last plane to Niarobi and was very tired of flying and was alittle air sick. We got at Niarobi about 9:30 pm. Met President and Sister Broadbent and was able to have a good night sleep. May 29th- Went with Broadbent's and Olsens to Mombasa. On the way there we stayed at a motel in a Safari area. Saw quite a few animals. May 30th Thrusday- continued on to Mombasa, The roads are in terrible repair. I'm amazed at the volume of traffic of trucks and cars. We got to our apartment , holy cow poor mom, I can tell she is struggling After a while comes out of the back room and is thankful to be here, however I am not so sure. May 31- Went to a zone conference and met our missionaries. We asked president Broadbent what we should do,he told us make your own mission. Take it slow. We had expected more direction. June 2nd we prayed night and morning to know what to do. Went to Changamwa Branch and was amazed at the strong testimonies of the people here. Have started driving in our truck, I am so lost here. Monday June 3rd- Happy Birthday Angie, we are so homesick. Mom is to but she is coping very well. I'm so proud of her. If they ask us to go back to the US I know we would. But I know we should be here. We went to pick up the elders we got lost finaly they found us. They showed us around & one was sick took them to the doctor. They told us how to get back to our flat. So we left them Then we became hopelessly lost. After driving around for some time a man stopped us he said that he knew the couple before us and could tell we were lost. He came with us showed us back to our apt. I was so glad to be back. And happy the lord answered our prayers. June25 opps mom said I need to be better at my journal Mom has me working out every morning.& I am eating smaller portions Holy cow it is working .I can know look down & see my feet. I don't know how much I have lost but the belly has gone down a lot .I have to tighten my belt or my pants will fall down. So much has happened with us. We don't get lost any more. But have had a few problems with the other drivers and have had a few fender benders, not as bad as the last. As you can read in his journal entries he was very homesick and confused, but today is July 2nd and our prayers have been answered. We know so much more of what we are to do. We are still learning but understanding more everyday. Just wish we could get the computer skills working. We have yet been able to scan documents to send to the mission home. We are really struggling and we even had a missionary who thinks he is pretty smart in computers come show us and he didn't know either. He said he hates windows 8 as even Staci has mentioned it. We need to pray for help and so we will be able to do our part. We really are doing good and really love the people here, we would like to help them with money as they are so very poor. But we have been instructed not to do that. But we can show them the gospel which will effect them for eternity and is worth more than any amount of money we could give. We know we have purposes here and hope we will be able to accomplish them. We are going to start teaching a temple seminar class and a family history class. We love you guys and miss everyone and we pray for you daily. Not only our family but for our friends as well. Love Elder & Sister Palmer

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