Catching Up #1 – We arrive in South Africa

Feb 2014 - We made the bed before we left Feb 2014 - Waiting in Salt Lake airport

Before we left for the airport one of the last things we did was make our bed – a picture to remind us there is a home sweet home between missions. Our iPads were kept busy during our trip to Joburg.

Feb 2014 - Sister Bishop fills us in Feb 2014 - The bishops and the elders

At the mission office on the 28th sister Bishop – the mission secretary among other things – gave us an orientation about the mission. Elder Bishop is in charge of the cars and E/S Bishop handle all the mission apartments. After our orientation elder Bishop took me out for a test drive to see how I would do driving  on the left side of the road. Since I had done this for 18 months the last time we were in South Africa it did not take long to at least feel like I would not have too many ‘oops’ moments until I was comfortable driving here. Being in the office and seeing missionaries coming and going made us remember our Fort Lauderdale mission. Since Potchefstroom is about 90 minutes away and there is only a small district of 6 elders serving within 50K of us, we will not get to know the missionaries like we did on our last mission.

We drove on the N12 – a 2 to 4 lane highway where high speed cars and low speed trucks share the road. In the areas where there are not four lanes and it is not divided there are passing areas where the slow vehicles move over – hopefully – so others may pass. We are told that there are many deadly accidents there – also there are speed traps where you go over a hill and on one side it 120K per hour and 80K per hour on the other side.  But we made it without any problems and picked up our keys to our new home away from home.

Feb 2014 - #7 Home sweet home Feb 2014 -  #7 Neighbors planting

We live in a very nice 3 bedroom, 2 bath townhouse that has a very large garage and is in a fully walled set of 12 homes. We are told that it is very safe here but even so every door and window has steel protection just in case. Our neighbors have beautiful plants by their entry way. All the floors are tile and the Bishops did a wonderful job furnishing it for us. Sister Bishop had asked what colors we liked and so we have wonderful grays, blues, purples and pinks through out the house. I will take some pictures of everything some day and post them here.

Feb 2014 - #7 Backyard Feb 2014 - #7 And it rained cats and dogs

We have a nice patio and a cute backyard. The yard has not been taken care of for months so the grass was about 10-12 inches deep and everything else was overgrown. Soon after we arrived it started raining – not just raining but pouring. In fact 12 of the first 14 days were here it rained. According to all those we talked to this was highly unusual for this area. At the time I hoped this did not mean we brought the bad weather with us. Of course here it is just starting to be Autumn where at home it is just starting to be spring. It will be about 18 months between our springs but we are use to that!

Feb 2014 - First Shopping trip Feb 2014 - The exploding light cover


One of the first things we did after unloading our bags was to go shopping. There is a very nice mall not 5 minutes away from our house and lots of grocery stores all over the place. The first night we were here was interesting because there was a loud noise that woke us up and then another loud crash that followed. It turned out to be two un-related events. We think the first was a neighbor’s cat that managed to climb in through one of the small ventilation windows that we left open. I tried to catch it but it managed to escape back through another window. The crash was the result of one of the glass light covers somehow working loose and crashing to the tile floor. It shattered in a million pieces and after 2 months I still find a small piece now and then. So that was our first day and part in the South Africa Johannesburg mission. We know this is where the Lord wants us to be for 18 months – now we just have to figure out what He wants us to do.

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