Sunday, November 3, 2013

Happy Birthday to Landon and Greetings to All

Dear children and grandchildren,

I just got off of the skype with Becky.  I had to see that chubby baby one more time and admire 7 year old Landon and see his birthday gifts.  We are really getting excited that we will be able to be with all of you for the Christmas holidays  Our only concern is that we might get sick, adjusting to the extreme weather change coming home at that time of the year.

This weekend, the Guyanese are celebrating a national holiday called Diwali.  It is a Hindu holiday which they also call the Festival of the Lights.  The people put lights around their homes and light firecrackers and fireworks.  We visited 4 families tonight and all the neighbors were outside enjoying the fireworks. Interestly enough, there were no dogs barking, like they usually do every night.  They are all hiding.  Dogs hate the loud noises of the firecrackers.

We have had a good week.  The training is going well with the Surujbhans.  They visited a couple of the elders Apartments this week.  One of them needed some fixing up and they have 5 of their own apartments which they rent to people so they know where the best places are to find things for the apartments.  They will be great with the elders.

We had a area day of service yesterday.  Every branch chose some type of community service.  Our Georgetown branch chose to work with the local Lion's club to clean up the main street on the east side of town.  There was a great turnout.  Between the branch members and the Lion's club there were probably 60 people wearing yellow vests, picking up garbage and cleaning up the street.  It looked really good after the work was done. 

The downside of this service project is that my hamstrings are so stiff and sore from all that bending down to pick up trash

We have one more service project to do with the Lions club this next couple of weeks.  We are going to hem 500 baby blankets and then make 500 newborn kits to give the the Georgetown public hospital.  There are several private hospitals in Georgetown, but this one is public, and it is free. 

 If anyone has any doubt about the benefits of socialized medicine, they need to visit the public hospital in Guyana.  Anyone who can afford a private hospital would never go to the public hospital.  You have to wait all day (literally) to see a doctor and the facilities are over crowded and run-down.  

Some of the women who go to the Georgetown public hospital to have their babies are so poor, that they have nothing to take them home in.  They will love the newborn kits, with the blanket, baby outfit, hat, diapers, pins and soap that goes with it.

We hope that all is well with you.  We are grateful that Deborah is at Becky's tonight helping out with the boys.  We wish we could be there to hold little Blake for a few minutes. 

Abi, hang in there for a few more weeks.  We pray for all of you and hope that you are happy.  Esther, we enjoyed the beautiful pictures of your halloween costumes. The children looked about as serious as we have ever seen them.

Love the All!  Mom and Dad

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