We have had a really fun busy week with Deborah and Jared. We picked them up at the airport on Sunday morning and they made it in time to hear the last of our Primary Sacrament Meeting Presentation and go to Sunday School and Relief Society. They were both really tired from the night flight, so I don't know how much they got our of the meetings, but the members enjoyed meeting them.
On Monday morning at 4:00 pm we were up and on our way to Lethem, to the interior of of Guyana. There is a member here, brother Charles, who grew up in Lethem who drove us there in his van. He claims that his heritage is part African and part Amerindian. He and his sisters and mother are members of the church in the last 3 years. His father died when he was about 11 years old.
He was an interesting guide because he knew the area so well. As we were traveling through the rain forest area he said that he never stops in that area because the rainforest is full of criminals who are running from the law, men from the United States and Canada. He said that if you stop to help someone, they might hold you up and take everything you have. That put a little fear in my heart. I kept on thinking, "Please car, don't break down here!"
After we arrived in Lethem, we visited some Amerindian villiages and saw people who seemed to live quite well without electricity for fuel and other appliances. They had a stone fireplace for doing their cooking and they washed their clothes with river water. I wondered if they ever got sick drinking the water. I didn't see any filtered water there.
On Tuesday evening, Brother Charles introduced us to his grandmother who is 89 years old, and get this, she is taking care of her mother who is "getting too old" to take care of herself. I asked how old the great grandmother was and he said that they weren't sure because she didn't have a birth certificate, but the country had assigned her a birth year of 1905 so she was 107 years old. She was a tiny withered little lady, but she was still sitting in her chair and walking with the help of a walker. I had never met anyone that old before.
After coming home on Wednesday afternoon the rest of the week was pretty uneventful. We just did catch-up office work and visited the city library, museum, and zoo. On Thursday evening Deborah and Jared helped some of our Georgetown piano students with their music. The young people enjoyed visiting them and telling them about their lives.
Yesterday, Jared helped Melvin at the office and Deborah did some sewing for me. It was kind of like they were taking care of us instead of the other way around. In the evening, we took Jared and Deborah to visit three families who we are trying to fellowship. We were happy to see all three families at church today.
We dropped them off at the airport this morning and I cried for a while after they left. I understand why parents are told not to visit their missionaries while they are serving their missions. Elder Beutler reminded me they I still had him and that he would take care of me. So now We are back to life on the mission again and ready to go again.
Love from Elder and Sister Beutler