Buka Juice –September 26, 2013

flower in Balaman Stopping traffic for construction Philippine road construction


The Zone Leaders climbed out of the tricycle into the pounding rain, paid the fare, came through the gate, and ran up our steep driveway. The first Elder to the porch took off his shoes as he stepped into the house. A big grin split his face.

I am sooo wet!

I handed a towel to him and one to his companion.

Did President call you?

No. Was he supposed to call?

I thought he would. He called us. We need to go to Balamban to bring the elders here. Could we borrow the car?

Of course. We’ll get the keys.

Could we have a drink of water?
Of course.

We have a water dispense which cools the water, which is a real treat for the young missionaries, as they only have a counter top dispenser which dispenses the water at room temperature. Room temperature is about 90 degrees.

We were eating some apple slices with peanut butter, and offered some to the missionaries, which they gladly accepted. I sliced some more apples.

When the elders returned, there were four of them. We started to cook a large pot of rice, and to heat up the left over Adobo and some chicken soup. I put the soy sauce on the table. The elders from the Philippines always mix soy sauce with their rice, then the put the other food on top of the rice.

The elder from New Zealand looked at the coconut tree.

I can climb that.

Go ahead. Too bad it is dark. This would make a great picture.

He changed to shorts and a tee shirt, got the machete from the kitchen and slipped it into his waistband. His bare toes and fingers gripped the rough bark as he walked up the tree trunk and began hacking at a coconut. He held it in his hand, then carefully dropped it to the ground. The elder from Australia stood and watched. The elder from New Zealand climbed down the tree, chopped at the coconut until he had a hole in the top, then tasted the coconut water inside. He grinned.

This is good!

He climbed back up the tree and chopped off several more coconuts. He asked for a big bowl and I brought out the two biggest ones that I have. |He poured the coconut water into the bowls and scraped the coconut meat in also before bringing the bowls into the house.

There he added some sweetened condensed milk, and asks for some graham crackers to add to the drink. Drinks with chunks in them are popular here. I gave him a measuring cup for a ladle and he put the bowl onto the table. I put the jar of almonds on the table. The elder from Australia likes almonds. The elders finished everything but the rice. It was a big pot of rice.

They don’t understand why we are not eating. We explained that the apples and peanut butter were our dinner. They shook their heads.

I could never do that.

We could not resist the Buka juice though. It is delicious.

One of the elders went back to his apartment and the other three stayed with us. Four elders from Lamac were staying at the apartment in Toledo, which made seven in the small apartment.

The next morning we took two of the elders to Cebu City. They were to meet with President Schmutz. This was the first time that Elder Hall had driven the road over the mountains to Cebu. The last time we went, one of the zone Leaders drove. Elder Hall complained that the Zone Leader, Elder Mejos, drove like a fiend.

The elder from the island of Mendanao gets car sick, so he rode in front. I sat in the back with the elder from Australia. After Elder Hall passed “tricycle” and a pickup with inches to spare, the elder from Mendanao said,

Good job, Elder Mejos.

He finds other opportunities to make the same comment. After Elder Hall passed two pickups on a sharp, steep blind curve, the elder from Australia gasped and put his hand over his racing heart. He muttered,

I miss road signs!

And wide straight roads?


We visited with the mission couple missionaries, paid our car fee for the month, and picked up mail for our district. As we walked out to the car with the mail, we met two temple missionary couples. They invited us to go shopping at “S & R” with them. It is a knock off of Costco. We did not go there the first time we were in the city because we were not able to use our credit card. It would have been cheaper this time if it had not worked. We found big bottles of peanut butter, the “Better Than Boullion” that I used at home, chili, and a number of other items. It feels good to have some “food storage.”

When we went back to the mission office, there was some more mail for our district. We checked on the two elders, and found that they were not finished and would go home with the elders from Lamac. We decided to go back, as we wanted to get home before dark. It gets dark here by six o’clock.

We stopped in Balamban to give mail to the sister missionaries there. We texted them and they said they would meet us at their apartment. I am actually able to get this text thing down most of the time. We waited for the sisters for about a half an hour. They apologized and said they were teaching a lesson in the “way far” part of their area.

When we got to Toledo, I started to text the Toledo 1 sisters, as they had asked us to make some visits with them. I guess I am not really so fast at texting, because we saw the sisters walking down the street before I finished the text. We gave them a ride to our apartment, and they helped us bring in the groceries. Sister Perrigo was amazed to see so much “American” food.

We visited four homes in our “barrangay” with them, and left them at a home where they had a dinner appointment. The Zone Leaders, who had borrowed the car to do a baptismal interview in Aloguinsen, came by just as we left and promised to give the sisters a ride home as it would be nine o’clock before they finished.

We made a mental note to ourselves to remember to pay the water bill tomorrow, and put the food away. We found that we had a sack of food items from one of the temple missionary couples that we had put in our car by mistake. The Zone Leaders will go to Cebu City for training on Monday, so we will send the sack with them.

We had both electricity and water in our house, so we hurried and got ready for bed while both were still functioning.

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