Sunday, June 11, 2017
Going to the Aduana
This is not a blog about reptiles in the Southeastern US. The Aduana is the Spanish word for Customs. It’s where we have to go to get packages that are shipped to missionaries. Before I talk about that I want to talk about our week.
We started out by doing inspections in Florida and Durazno on Tuesday and Wednesday. Elder and Sister Jensen are on Temple recess so they were able to go with us. It was a fun trip. The houses were quite clean and neat. We are proud of the way the missionaries take care of the houses. I suggested at one house that needed a little more help that we could send a picture of the house to his mom. He didn’t seem too excited about that.
We were able to take the Jensens to the dam by Paso de Los Toros. It was a lot higher this year and water was going over the spillway. The foam in the river is caused by the turbulence from the spillway. You have to know that if we are going to Durazno that we are going to have a Bauru at El Gaucho. The Jensens liked it too. At the Sarandi del Yi house we discovered that they could not buy propane for their heater and could not get a fire started in their wood stove. They only had large pieces of wood and they were kind of wet so we went looking for wood. We found some and after a little work we got a fire going. After I called their Bishop and he said he could help them get propane for the heater. We got home about 9:00 P. M. A little late for old missionaries.
Thursday we needed to move bikes from La Capuera to Parque do Plata. We borrowered the mission van and did the trip in about three hours. We had to take a detour and get the tool box for the bikes as the missionaries from Maldonado “borrowed” it.
When we got back to the office we were asked to help the missionaries go get a package from customs. When the missionaries arrive they are told to have their family ship packages by US mail and not to use Fedex or UPS. They tell them it is much more difficult to get them through customs. Now I know why.
Here is what we had to do: We started at customs at the main airport. They told us to go to the other airport. At the main customs desk, they told us to go down the hall. This guy told us to go further down the hall. That guy sent us back to the first desk. The first desk told us we had to have the passport and permission slip to take out the package. After receiving this by email on my phone, they directed us to the Fedex office out the door and around the corner to make a copy of the shipping invoice. After getting the copy we went back to the first desk and were then sent back to the second desk. They charged us $19 and gave us a receipt. With the receipt we went to the third desk and got the package. What did we learn: DON’T send packages by Fedex.
We spent a wonderful weekend in Castillos. It is amazing how the Lord directs the work to help us find the people that we need to find. We had several great experiences with wonderful people that are too personal to mention. Included in our trip was family night with the Lopez family. Renee took fresh lemon pie and cookies and they did homemade pizza. We had a great feast that included a neat message from the Elders. On Saturday we had some other neat visits. Usually we have lunch at Narda’s house. She was in Montevideo on business so she had her husband, Pocho, fix us lunch. We helped a little and it went real smooth. We do miss Narda and look forward to seeing her in two weeks.
Today was a neat day at Church. There were 24 people in attendance. We can feel the Spirit strengthen in Castillos each time we go. The members and missionaries are working real hard to build the branch. You can feel the love of the people grow.
The day ended with visits from home. Besides our usual family visits we received two more calls. The first one was from Sister Berlynn Hall and Sister Rachel Finklea. Rachel is visiting Berlynn back east and gave us a call. It was so fun. They are so happy and continue to be anxiously engaged. What a wonderful blessing for us. We also got a call on facebook from Joseph Brumble and Franke Vallecillos. They were known as Brumblecillos to me. We had a hard time talking to them when they were at the ballgame but had a short visit this afternoon. It is so good to hear from them.
We always have a good week when we can go to Castillos. We are excited to see the growth in the people and the blessings that come to us as we serve with them. We come to know more each week that this work comes from our Savior. It is wonderful to be able to be part of the army.
We love you all and appreciate your support.
Love, Gordon and Renee