Well a Happy New Year to you from Logrono! Hermana Rudder and Elder Crocker seem to be up to something! We went on a 5 day interview schedule and had our lunch with the missionaries in Logrono. We had a great meal of pizza and salad and then of course the traditional desert for the holiday of the 3 Reyes or 3 Kings. On January 6th they celebrate the 3 wisemen who come bringing gifts. They have a cake, with a king in it and the person who finds it in their piece is the one who gets to wear the crown and keep the king.
Elder Harris is wearing the crown whether he won it or not! Hermana Huntsman knows that isn't the case, but who is being picky. Actually Elder Ashby was the winner. But time to push on, we have 5 days of interviews.
We went on to Burgos where we spent the New Years Eve doing missionary work. Hermana's Moraza and Sanchez and I went on 3 visits. This visit was with Sofia, the young 11 year old who was just baptized 2 weeks earlier. Sofia and her mother are wonderful people who served us a little hot soup to help us stay warm in Burgos. It was a cold, rainy night and the soup was great. Hopefully all of you in Spain ate your grapes to bring in the new year.
New Years day took us into the Leon Zone. We had a wonderful lunch of chicken, mashed potatoes, and corn with Elders Pederson and Alvarez. Elder Pederson gave all his fellow missionaries a little advice for the new year about working in the cold. He told them all to "Grow up and be a man and don't whine about the cold." Right on Elder Pederson, you are the man!
All Presidente and Elder Alvarez can do is smile in agreement.
The next day we found ourselves in Vigo in front of the statue of the fishermen on Gran Via. Not as cold on the coast. We took this day off to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary. Wow, can it be that many? We did a little shopping and eating and just enjoying some down time, something you learn to really appreciate here on a mission.
Now who is this newcomer to the mission? Elder Sea gull? We drove to the beach area but it was raining and not a great day for a walk. But Presidente had an idea of what to do with the stale bread from breakfast the day before.
Feed the Sea Gulls. They started to surround us. I told Presidente that he had to get in the car as it was starting to feel like that old movie "The Birds" by Alfred Hitchcock. They were coming down almost eating out of his hands.
Sunday we were in Ourense attending church and visiting the Elders there. What a dear branch they have. Here Elder Ryser with his "father" Elder Webb are enjoying the homemade cookies I like to bring the missionaries when we come for interviews. Elder Ashby and Dredge get their fair share of cookies in the car.
Elder's Roldan and Oscanoa wave good-bye along with a few of the members of the Rama in Ourense. We have a full day of interviews up the coast to complete before bedding down in A Coruna.
The next morning we finish with the interviews in Santiago with Elders Sayaz and Nestvogel. Monday is P-day, so we met them early and Presidente allowed them to come in their preparation day clothes as they had plans to do e-mail and shopping and a sporting activity. Elder Nestvogel is a real athlete and he is always on the go. Great Elders doing great work in Santiago. They have two baptismal dates set. After our interviews it was off in the car for the return trip home to Bilbao. The ayudantes had a full night of visits and we had lots to do to prepare for the next week of interviews. We did 40 interviews and found 40 hard working missionaries setting their standards high for the new year.