Saturday, August 29, 2015

July – Continuing Celebrations – Part 1

We have found the seasons here to be Winter, Winter, Short Spring, a Summer of Festivals as well as Construction. We don’t know yet about Fall. We just know that there are a lot of Festivals in the summer and a lot of construction. Does the construction sound familiar. Every ethnicity has a festival ad there are festivals at the lake, downtown, etc.

Wednesday, July 1, was National Canada Day. It is like the 4th of July for us in the USA. We went downtown to walk around and see the festivities. Most of the streets were closed so we drove part way and parked the car on the street where there were no parking charges or meters and then rode the double decker bus into town.


The Canada Supreme Court building was open for public tours so we went in. We found it very interesting. Canada has nine Supreme Court justices, three from Quebec because they are French speaking and three from Ontario because they have the most population of all provinces, two from the west and one from the Atlantic side. All the judges are required to be bilingual in French and English. They are required to retire at age seventy-five. The building is high quality, French in style and very well finished with wood and stone. The presentation was given in English and French alternately. We both enjoyed the tour very much.
Sorry about the side view, but we could not fix it. This is an RCMP with Elder Payne
We walked on Parliament Hill and watched a Secondary School band play. We were on the grounds when a RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) told a couple that he had to leave because it was going to really come down in about 5 minutes. It did and we had an enormous rain storm. We were prepared with an umbrella and our raincoats and we and everyone else ran toward the Rideau Mall. By the time we got there Elder Paynes pants were soaked below the knee. His shoes seemed to be Ok. Sister Payne's skirt was soaked at the bottom and my shoes were swimming. We finally got in the mall and headed for Nordstrom’s. Sister Payne went into the washroom and wrung out the bottom of her skirt and tried to dry her shoes in the hand dryer, after which she put paper towels in the bottom. The operative word here is try. We decided to eat lunch with about 1,000 people in the food court with no seating. We went around and around and finally found a place to sit.

After it stopped raining we walked to the Canadian National Mint and took the tour. We loved the Mint. The exterior has incredible architecture.
Again it was very interesting. The mint in Ottawa makes collector and investment coins for countries all over the world. I think he said they can make two thousand coins an hour. And they had two hundred million dollars’ worth of precious metal on supply. We lifted a gold bar and of course took a picture. We bought some collector quarters for souvenirs.

After, we walked through Murray Hill Park and bought two cobs of corn from a farm vender. We saw the locks that start from the Ottawa River and go south along the Rideau Canal.
All day we had walked a total of 11,420 steps and finally boarded the bus to go home about 7:30 or 8:00. When we got home we went up to the sports (24th) floor of our building and watched the fireworks through the window. The fireworks were spectacular.
We like to walk along the Rideau Canal. These pictures were taken just as the sun was setting. It is beautiful no matter what time of the day it is.


We love to help at the Garlic Farm. This month we got to go and help sort the garlic. We would make sure the garlic bulb is solid and not splitting and put them in the proper pile. The garlic had been picked and was drying on these large wooden shelves. We had a couple of Chinese YSA investigators helping with garlic. They are both really sweet. We hope they keep coming to church and keep progressing in the Gospel.


It is interesting that many of the Chinese students are interested in the Church; but, from outside influences, they read decide not to listen any further. We have a quite a few Chinese members on our YSA rolls that we cannot find both here and Montreal. Many have gone back to China. We hope when China is open to proselyting, they will come out of the woodwork and be good members in China. However, we have one great Chinese sister that is absolutely darling. She helps a lot in missionary work as she studies at U Ottawa. She is definitely amazing and we love her to death.

This month we had a couple of days to travel. Brother Turner had told us that we really needed to see Jones Falls. We drove down to Jones Falls and saw this beautiful set of locks. There is a 54’ drop in the river at this point. The locks are huge. We watched some boats going through a couple of the locks. Then we hiked up to the top lock, then went back to this quaint little village with its boat docks, a very expensive old hotel and a small, older fast food sit down restaurant.

We traveled to Kingston and stayed in Gananoque. The next day we took a one hour boat tour of the thousand islands on the St. Lawrence Sea Way. This is something that Elder Payne wanted to see since he served his mission on the US side of the St. Lawrence River. It was beautiful.
To count as one of the Thousand Islands, land within the channel must be at least 6’ square and have at least one living tree and one bush or two trees and be above water level year-round.

We had transfers and no we are not going anywhere; but, our grandson Tyler, Alisa and John’s son is coming home. We are so excited for them. We see the missionaries as they are transferred both to another area and home. We love to be these missionaries and we get so attached to them, it is hard to see them leave our YSA area.

Did we mention that the YSA has no boundaries within our mission in Ontario and Gatineau, Quebec. Our Dows Lake missionaries also get to use Facebook to communicate with the YSAs, since that is their main form of communication next to texting. It is a good thing they can use Facebook, because they can keep up with their investigators, their less actives and their new converts. The missionaries keep in touch with the new members for at least two years and the less actives as well. The church hopes that they can be friends for life. That is a great opportunity for the missionaries as well as the members, because they can see them progress and know how they are doing.

We have been asked to teach the Temple Prep class to a member of our ward. She is going to get her endowments in August and is so excited. She is a great member and a wonderful YSA. What a blessing we have to see her progress and her love for the Lord as she prepares herself for the Temple.

We had our HEG (home evening group)/institute combined activity at Brother Turner’s home. We roasted hotdogs and s’mores in the fire pit. One of the counselors asked if anyone had a spiritual thought. My mind went blank, but Elder Weber, one of our Chinese Elders assigned to our ward, offered to tell about the scripture he had recently read. It was an excellent end to the night.
We will send part 2 in a couple of days! Love Elder and Sister Payne






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