|SOUVENIRS FROM THE BRANCH|
|WE WERE FED NOODLES DURING THE BREAK BETWEEN MEETINGS...WRAPPED IN PLASTIC|
It has been a whirlwind week of preparing to leave and preparing things for the next couple to take over smoothly. We had our usual visits and meetings for part of the week. I have been cleaning the apartment and packing. We finally decided we would have to have one additional suitcase so purchased a cheap one hoping it holds together for the trip. Thursday evening our branch had a 'farewell' party for us which was very well attended and fun. We started with a program which was singing, dancing and testimonies. Then lots of food and the whole thing ended with fireworks.
|PARTICIPATING IN A TRADITIONAL DANCE|
Dancing with the branch members
The party was also for Kelven who would leave in the morning to serve his mission even though the place was changed from London, England to Singapore because he couldn't get a visa to UK. So he was set apart after the party and caught an early morning flight to Manila to the MTC.
Friday was our last wheelchair handover to Cheshire Homes here in KK. The VIP was the Minister of Community Development and Consumer Affairs. We have met her before. She praised LDS Charities very highly and admonished others to be so generous. News articles praised LDSC and also mentioned that we would be returning to our home in UK this next week. We always give out a 'press release' so the press will have the facts but sometimes it just doesn't matter.
After the handover, we caught the last couple of hours of zone conference, and then a baptism that evening. Saturday afternoon was district auxiliary training which I was involved with and district conference evening meeting and continued on today. Our KK branch choir sang "If You Could Hie To Kolob" a capella and without even getting a pitch to begin. Elder Subandryo from Jakarta, our visiting area authority, said it sounded like angels singing. He is very kind.
|KK CHOIR PRACTICING..."If You Could Hie To Kolob" WHICH IS ONE OF BILL'S FAVORITE HYMNS|
There were many members who made the long (12 to 16 hours) bus trip from Tawau and not quite so long (8 hours) trip from Sandakan. I am grateful that we were able to fly to those places doing our work. The members from out of town stay in hostels and are fed at the church between meetings; noodles and rice.
|ELLEN'S TESTIMONY with SISTER MARY ANN TRANSLATING|
HARUN AND FAMILY and a few others
JULIET AND OCELIZA AND THEIR KIDS
|SISTERS ZAFAR AND HOWARD|
SISTER JULIET AND CHILDREN
So we fly tomorrow. The reality has not yet hit us. Perhaps somewhere over the Pacific it will occur to us that we will, in all likelihood, never see our friends in Malaysia again. At the farewell party we knew we would see our friends again on Sunday. Today we know we will see many tomorrow at the airport before we leave.
Bill Here: It has hit me at times. It is so hard to even think about leaving. We certainly have missed home and wanted badly to be there especially when we were needed by family or friends. But we have never really wanted it to be over. And now it is. We sit here this evening writing this blog with nothing on our calendar for us to do with the responsibilities we have had for 18 months.
|ALICE...BEEN A MEMBER ONLY ONE YEAR|
RS SEC AND ALWAYS THERE WITH HER THREE KIDS...ALWAYS BY BUS
|OLDEST MEMBER, SISTER ERNI,|
SINGING A TRADITIONAL FAREWELL SONG TO US
We leave this apartment that has been our home for 13 months at 9:30 am. We will fly out at noon Monday and be in Singapore around 2:30 pm. We then will spend the night there and hopefully fly out to Taipae at 1pm. However we just heard on the news that a typhoon had hit there today. Oh well we will get home eventually.
We will post again when we return to the US with pictures from that side of the world. But this is our last post from "THE LAND BELOW THE WIND."