Sunday, August 31, 2014

Evan's Lookout and Other Common Names

 There was a special meeting involving 6 of the 9 Zones in the mission. These are some of the missionaries in attendance.  We were taught by Elder and Sister Taylor, Area Mental Health consultants.  The subject matter included companionships and communication.  The information was very good and the presentation was very well organized and delivered. We are going to practice our newly learned communication skills on each other.  Even old dogs learn new tricks!

 We have come to appreciate the learning curve that missionaries experience with relationships, languages, the gospel, and themselves.  It is a lot of pressure and the leaders are ever mindful of helping us have the tools that we need so that we are not stressed.  

 As you look at these pictures, you will hopefully feel the love we have for each and every one.  They brighten our day, lighten our load, and though we are much older, we often feel they are our peers and friends.  How blessed we are to count ourselves as fellow missionaries with these outstanding representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ.

They make us smile while I am getting smiles from them.  

We received another email this week from a mother who has found our blog and enjoys seeing not only her missionary but learning about his life from us.  So for all of you "Blog Stalkers" we hope you enjoy this small glimpse of this week and find your son or daughter pictured here.  

You can probably find a few that seem to jump into every picture - my photo bombers!  It was a race to see if I could take the picture before they got there and then to see if I could close in and shoot and leave them out.  From the looks of these shots, the Bombers won!

I had this beautiful picture of all sisters and then - What is that Assistant doing in the background!  He is actually short and yet was able to leap and time exactly with the snapping of the camera.  Skills!

He is in the background again, but didn't time it as well.  Better luck next time Elder.  

We were able to leave the office for 4 hours while we attended this conference.  

As Sisters in Zion!  We are even getting in some of the pictures now.  The visiting and comraderie after the conference is uplifting and joyful.  We should have come to these conferences at the first of the mission!  Oh yea, we get to work for a living!

The transportation arrangements to get all of these missionaries to this chapel were amazing.  But thanks to the opal cards which help with public transportation, many rode the trains and Elder doesn't have to reimburse them anymore.  The missionaries like the public transportation because they can meet a lot of people that way.

Say, what? Where? The information centers here are very good and have unique displays about the area.  We found homemade crafts and local articles for sale which are of high quality.  We stop at information centers before exploring an area because it helps us focus on what we want to see and do.

The Lennox Bridge is large and is the oldest arched bridge in Australia made of stone.

We went to the Blue Mountains again on Saturday to see some of the places we have missed.  There are so many hikes that are beautiful and before you get to the end of this blog we are certain you will agree.  

 This is the home of Norman Lindsay a famous Aussie painter.  We didn't visit his gallery because his favorite subject was naked women.  Hmmm, a short outside visit was all we needed.  

The bulk of our time was spent in this area - Evan's Lookout.  There are numerous hikes and we did not have enough time to do them all - we will go back.  But we are certain you can understand why we we were interested in this site!

This looks like a postcard!  The rain kept coming and going but we pushed on.  The temperature was 7 degrees Celsius.

Rainbows  are always so vibrant.  We continued on with the hike because we knew this was a sign that we would not get flooded out!  :)

If the trail is impassable, they have this solution for stopping your hike.  The gate has a lock - but for now it is open!  

This was Jurrasic Park size ferns!  The rain forests are incredibly beautiful.  Of course, you have to get down to them which means lots of steps climbing down.  This trail is one of the earliest built - around 1913.

This looked like the weeping wall - the rain was coming out of the sky but also coming off the rock walls.  We actually put up the "brolly" or umbrella so that we could protect the camera.

And the name of the falls is Bridal Veil!  This was the hike of common names!   We hiked over the top of the falls but there is another hike along the rock wall to the side.  

Remember these are the Blue Mountains.  This is not a touched up photo by Adobe but the real color!

This is Elder's "Vanna White" pose!

A nice jogger was willing to take the photo.  

Remember we said climbed down and climbed out - we have decided that it is either steps to heaven or steps to hell depending on how tired you are as you climb.  The yellow flowers are Wattle.  Aussies use it as flavoring.  We actually enjoyed Lemon Wattle syrup on our pancakes.

There are lots of clever sayings about water falling but since it is late on a Sunday night, we are all out!  What we can tell you is that we finished the Book of Mormon in 60 days!  That was a goal that we had been working on together.  We can also tell you that it is an amazing book of scripture and another witness of Jesus Christ.  We have been thinking alot about our family and friends this week. You are always in our prayers.  We know that school is starting for all and we hope for a successfull year for each of you.  We will keep you updated as we continue on our quest to learn all we can about NSW.  Until next time - love and hugs, Elder and Sister Feil