Monthly Archives: February 2008

Pictures – The Flood


As we drove to the office in a taxi on the 19th we had to go through a small flooded area. This area floods if there is any significant rain but today it was deeper and larger than usual. Our driver had some things on his license that I had not seen before. The writing says that he has been a driver for 8 years and the star means he has received an award. I wish I had enough Indonesian so I could have found out more, but I could tell by the smile on his face that he was proud of his record and that I noticed it.

19 February 2008

19 February 2008 – Tuesday
Prologue: As we read the Kitab Mormon before going to bed, I was struck again by 2 Nephi 4:15-35 – sometimes called Nephi’s Psalm. In 15 he says that he ‘writes the things of my soul.’ Soon after that he says that he ‘pondereth continually on the things I have seen and heard.’ As I read this I realized that I spend very little time ‘pondering’ the blessings of the Lord. I am too busy doing and thinking about things that seem important to me at the time but in reflection have little Eternal value. I guess it is never too late to change perspective and prove by my action I truly believe in Eternal Life.

I woke a little early this morning and used the time to read a Oct 2005 conference talk by President Faust about following our leaders. When I went to go to the gym it was raining and the attendant is usually late when that happens. Today was not an exception so I walked and jogged some where it was dry until he came. Then I did a light workout for about a half an hour. I will increase it some each day until I get back into the swing of things.

After breakfast we read from the Kitab Mormon and I watched a program on BYUTV about an LDS pilot during WW II who named his bomber ‘Utahman.’ He flew over 35 missions during the war. It was quite a story and I had not heard it before.

We are really happy that Shauna and Kelli have started a blog. We now have all our family except Bob and Brian with blogs where we can read and see what is going on in their lives. The hard part is for them to post regularly. We can also see Teresa’s blog so we get some idea of what the girls are doing. Come on Bob and Lisa get with the program. <g>

We got a letter from Ed confirming that he is coming to Jakarta next week and will be in Indonesia for the best part of a month. Unfortunately we will be gone for much of the time he is here next week, but we will be free when he comes back to Jakarta in March. We are excited to see him – or first and probably only visitor from the family.

Today is our first day without a car so we took a taxi to the office. On the way we had to go through a flooded area – it was not all that deep but it certainly caused a traffic jam. Out driver was brave – or foolish – and drove right through it. I took a couple of pictures that make it look bigger than it was.

I chose today to install our new computer and everything went perfectly until we tried to install the printer software and the computer just froze up due to some incompatibility. Sam was helping – actually doing most of the work – and we tried everything we could and finally gave up, put everything back in the box so we could take it back to the mission office. Wisely I made sure the old computer was still working before I did anything with the new one.

Mary worked on English all morning and until we had to leave so she could teach her English class to the office staff. Of course we had to take a taxi and load everything into the trunk. It is a good thing that taxis are cheap here.

While Mary taught her class, I read the latest Church News and talked to Elder Subandriyo about our upcoming trip to Central Java for the English class and other things that he would like us to accomplish before we leave. Elder Subandriyo has a great love for the members in Indonesia and his mind is always busy on finding ways that will help families and individual members break the bands of poverty. He thought trying the class in Bogor would be a good idea so I will contact the Kanes and see what we can do before the next Intensive English class starts.

I also had a nice talk with President Marchant about the Couples Conference and gave him a suggestion for the next one – which we will miss. We talked about his concern for the PH leaders and the time they need to spend away from their home and family to fulfill their callings. This is something that he has felt since he arrived here. He still has not heard about the couple who will replace us. We really hope that they get here so we over lap at least one or two weeks so we can bring them up to speed on the English classes they will teach and over-see.

We caught another taxi home – total cost for three taxi rides totaling about 90 minutes $7 including tip. Car rentals in Jakarta are higher than ones in the US – they want from $35 to $50 a day. I have arranged to borrow the President’s car on Thursday – the one day we need to go a lot of places. He is going to Eastern Java for some interviews.

At home we watched the DVD of “Testimony’ which we had for a long time but had not seen. It was a nice story and was well done. Then we read from the Kitab Mormon for an hour. Now I am listening to a BYUTV presentation of a music concert. Then I watched a program on Philo Farnsworth and TV. I just found out that I need to read a biography of Karl Maeser.

18 February 2008


Our romantic Valentine Day dinner – A young man waiting for luggage at the airport. I loved his hat when the temperature was about 80 degrees and very humid. Another motorcycle load during rainy season. Note the load on the bike between his knees.

18 February 2008 – Monday

Woke about 5 and after reading some of a conference talk in Indonesian and checking out the latest mail while it was available, I went to the gym for the first time in about 6 weeks. I did a very light workout so as not to hurt anything. Stepping on the scales was not a joyful experience. But it felt good to do some sit-ups and ride the bike.

I have just about caught up with my journal. It will be a relief to get my thoughts and memories on paper. Right now I am waiting for the November 2005 conference report to load so I can get a copy of then Elder Eyring’s talk on spiritual preparation.

We read from the Kitab Mormon but only 3 pages as neither of us seemed to be fully with it. Sometimes that is just the way it is. I went on and read President Eyring’s talk in Indonesian. There are still too many missing words to be able to read it well but I can certainly get enough to clearly understand what he is writing about.

Before going to the office we stopped – that sounds much easier than it is in Jakarta – at Carrefour to get 8 reams of paper for the copier. I had the paper and was at the check-out line in a couple of minutes. But as usual it became the longest line in the store. To make it short, every customer in front of me and myself had a problem so a 5 minute stop took about 15 minutes. It is a good thing that I am learning to be patient.

At the office I started cleaning up from the last English class. Mary worked on things she needs for her class tomorrow and some other English activities. We are slowly recovering our office. I answered a lot of e-mail. The best thing was that we were able to get a call through to Tom using the phone card. Unfortunately it had a terrible delay and it broke up often. However just hearing a few words and sharing some thoughts made the day better. I do not think the family knows how much we miss them and how much their letters, blogs and calls mean to us.

Sam went and got a lot of things done. We need to get the car repaired before the insurance runs out. He had to go to the police station to make a report and to the insurance company to get an OK to get it done. When he got back he called the repair station and found that it would take 10 days to get it repaired because they are going to paint the whole car.

When we found that it would take 10 days we decided that we could use cabs for many of the days and President Marchant said we could use his car on Thursday so we can go to Tangerang. We then decided to go to Central Java next week to check up on the English classes.

Speaking of that, Elder Subandriyo wrote to tell us that yesterday he was in Semarang and the class will start there this week. So we will end up visiting three cities on our trip. Hopefully Ed will not be coming at the same time. We will probably take 4 or 5 days to do this. Hopefully when we get back the car will be finished.

When we came back to the apartment we read again from the Kitab Mormon and then I got my journal ready to send to post or send to Jim so our blog will be caught up. I also have a lot of pictures that I need to post. So I imagine I will spend much of tomorrow at the office doing this.
I watched a couple of programs on BYUTV – actually I fell asleep during the second one about a poet that was a convert to the church and teaches/taught at BYU Provo. Mary kept busy all night getting packets ready for the HS English class. She had to figure out in what order to put everything together. I am not much help because she kind of makes it up as she goes. She still needs to write instruction for all of the games that she made card for.

As I was working on the computer, I decided that just for the fun of it I would see if I could post on our blog. I have not been able to do this for over 6 weeks and during that time I have fallen way behind in posting from the office. To may amazement, the first post went right through without a hitch – in fact it was very fast. So I ended up catching up the journal part of the blog and then posted a lot of pictures. It is a lot easier to do it from here because I can just use the Word Perfect files – if I take them to the office I must change them to Richtext files. Hopefully the site will not shut me out again.

As I sit here there is lots of thunder and lightening going on outside. The rain has been heavy for about an hour. The rainy season should be winding down soon.

Before turning off the light, I read the Church News of Feb 9th about President Hinckley’s funeral and the new First Presidency. Then I picked up the November 2005 conference talk by President Eyring where he outlines “four settings in which to practice quick and steady obedience.” One of these is the command to feast upon the word of God and talks about his our experience of reading the Book of Mormon as President Hinckely challenged the Saints to do. He says that he was already planning to read it again.

I made the same plans for reading the Book of Mormon during our mission. In the MTC it was pointed out that if we read 5 pages a day we can finish the book in about four months. I thought that was a good goal to set. I am happy to say that we have managed to average about 7 pages a day with each page being read 3 times. It is a good way to start and finish a day.

Zone Conference – Jan 2008


One of the blessings of the mission is getting together about every 6 weeks with all the missionaries in the Zone to get instruction and to share their great spirit. This one was on January 31st. The first is of course all the Zone. The second show the Kanes and Walkers discussing the finer points of eating off paper plates without the help of a table. The Kanes and Walkers are on Humanitarian Missions and are doing some great things for the Indonesian people. Especially with clean water projects and wheelchairs. The last one is of an elder who decided the best way to enjoy the conference was too stretch out on one of the benches. Actually he had terrible headaches for a few day that really left him weak.

Once again…


We stayed at Kuta beach which is where the terrible double bomb attack happened. The first shot is the memorial that commemorates the tragedy. On Monday night we all went out to dinner at a restaurant that featured some Balinese dancing. This was us with them.  The main feature of the trip was the actual Senior Couples Conference – 13 hours of instruction and sharing. The picture shows the Hashes and the Barnards – two of the 10 great couples that are serving in Indonesia.

And More


We had only one full day to see some of Bali. This is the restaurant where we ate lunch on Thursday with the Kanes and Roberts. The first is a view of the men’s bathroom. The next is the main dinning room. The dinning areas are tucked away within the garden. There are plants, water features, statues, and art work everywhere. The last is our personal dinning area. The food wasn’t bad either.

More Pictures


As I said in a post, there are temples everywhere in Bali and this was a very large one because it was basically an art temple.

This is fun….


We held our Senior Couples Conference in Bali – the first picture is all the couples, the second is the Western group arriving at the airport. The last one is a family of three on a rainy day. We had never seen anyone use an umbrella – and this one is soooo pink – on a motorcycle. I do not see how she managed to hold it up straight. It just goes to show you can do anything if you put your mind to it. Especially in Jakarta.



I have not been getting many good motorcycle loads lately. The first one is a neat load of crepes – usually they are over flowing the bike but this guy liked to keep things in order. The second picture does not do the load justice but I could not get it from the side. This is a huge, unbalanced load. I was sure he was going to fall over and spread the load all over the street.  The last one is a load of empty paper cement bags. Sam said that they would re-use them. In Indonesia they re-cycle just about everything, but I wonder if he was not going to use them for something else

Two Test Pictures…


Our third Intensive English Class – we came to love each of our students


The class chipped in and bought us some presents. I got this beautiful shirt and if you look really close you can see Mary’s new necklace.