Sunday, September 11, 2016

Week 27 Report

Our week began with a holiday - Labor Day. The office was closed, so we took full advantage and slept in. In the afternoon we drove to the Waikele Premium Outlets. Devon loves the Tommy Bahama Hawaiian shirts and they were half price at their outlet store during Labor Day Weekend. I have never seen so many people shopping at the same place before. There were a couple of tour buses full of Chinese tourists that had stopped there. A couple of stores had lines outside with people waiting for their turn to enter. We got the shirts, strolled around the complex and left. We had a late lunch at Chili's and then went to a movie - the first one we've seen since being in Hawaii. It was Devon's pick - "Jason Bourne" - and he loved it. Then we went home for dinner and a relaxing evening.

The rest of the week was business as usual: apartments to lease, repairs to arrange, cell phone to hand out, bicycles to get repaired, letters to write, luncheons to arrange, departing items to prepare for next transfer, etc., etc., etc. It really is one continual round. As soon as we finish with the paper work/business of one transfer, we begin preparing for the next. It's been fun to be in communication with my cousins, Pat and Jim Hartzell, who are office missionaries in the Arkansas Little Rock Mission. We do many of the same things, but often a little differently.

Wednesday we had Elder Hardy (Spring City, Utah) and Elder Eborn (Kaysville, Utah) over for dinner. They serve in our Manoa Ward so have a special place in our hearts. I forgot to get their photo - too tired I guess. Anyway, we always enjoy having them over - GREAT elders!

This is Elder Villanueva (Philippines) and Elder Johnson (Colorado). Elder Villanueva has been out about 3 transfers and is trainer for Elder Johnson who arrived a couple of weeks ago. Most of our missionaries have cars, but these two are assigned to bicycles. Poor Elder Johnson had little to no experience on a bicycle and was so worried about it. Well, he practiced a lot in the parking lot and now absolutely loves riding his bicycle. Here they are with their new helmets. They are so cute, and so cute together as companions. They really like and compliment each other. They just make me smile every time they come to the office.

Friday evening we went to dinner with another office couple, the Overduyns. They are due to go home in December - I will miss them - but so far there are no replacements on the horizon. That's a little worrisome. They say they will stay a little longer if needed and it looks like it may be needed. After dinner Sister Overduyn and I did a little shopping/looking at Macy's while the guys sat patiently in the shoe department.

Saturday we went to Pearl Harbor to tour the USS Bowfin submarine. The USS Bowfin is a fleet attack submarine that fought in the Pacific during WWII, and helped to make famous the term, "Silent Service." Bowfin was launched on 7 December 1942, exactly one year after the attack on Pearl Harbor. She was nicknamed the Pearl Harbor Avenger, so it is fitting that her permanent home is at Pearl Harbor.

The USS Bowfin is named after this hard fighting, aggressive, and voracious fish found in fresh water from the Great Lakes to the Southern states. It is a descendant of a fish dating back to the Jurassic Period. Due to its ability to use its swim bladder as a primitive lung, it can live in water with low oxygen content, and can survive for days at a time in little or no water. It seems like a really good name for a fighting submarine. The USS Bowfin survived the war with great success against the enemy and a record of never losing a single sailor. Other submarines were not so lucky.

The USS Bowfin and Devon in his new Hawaiian Palaka shirt.

Torpedo room. Notice the bunks between and above the torpedos. Sweet dreams????

Officers' sleeping quarters.

Photo of another officers' sleeping quarters. This one shows the sink bowl in the down position. The one above shows it in the up position on the bottom left of the photo.

One of two engine rooms.

The galley where all the food was prepared. They cooked all day with the sailors eating in shifts. They had a big refrigerator/freezer below this deck. They had to crawl down a hole to get to it.

The mess hall.

One of the crew's bunk rooms. They didn't have enough beds for all the sailors, so just as they ate in shifts, they also slept in shifts. 

Navigation room. Notice how small the doorways are.

This photo was taken from the bow of the USS Bowfin. On the right is the USS Arizona Memorial. On the left is the USS Missouri - the place of the signing of the peace treaty between Japan and the United States at the end of WWII. The Pearl Harbor Memorial is amazing - a definite must see if ever in Honolulu. 

We end our week with a wonderful Sabbath day. We had great talks in Sacrament Meeting and great lessons in Sunday School, Relief Society and Priesthood. We have had phone conversations with several of our children this week - something that I love. Brad and Stephen are recovering and everyone else is doing well. We loved seeing photos of Natalie and Allison with their Homecoming dates - beautiful girls, if I do say so myself! With the good news, there is also sad news from home. My cousin, Julie, has been diagnosed with breast cancer. She is positive, upbeat, and her doctors think they have caught it early. Another cousin, Bryan, tragically lost his son this week. Our hearts and prayers are with them. 

I want to end this blog post with a scripture - shared by our good friends, Terry and Annette Hill who are serving in Lima, Peru - and say how grateful we are for good health, financial security, and a wonderful family that make it possible for us to be on this mission.

Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people that they might have everlasting life.
3 Nephi 5:13


  1. Just looking at the pictures inside the submarine gives me claustrophobia!!

  2. I love reading your missionary experiences. Thank you for sharing them!