Thursday, September 2, 2010

Labor Day is coming up, you probably not see this until Labor Day but in reality it is 4 days away at the time of writing. Reminiscing about the family outings and get to-gathers on this day. The heart turns to families and very close friends of the BBQs in the back yard and the gatherings. Who is hosting this year’s party? Probably no one since mom and dad are gone. Want you all to know that we miss you all a lot and an e-mail every now and then helps us get through the days and times like this. This is the start of the “Holiday” event leading up to Christmas. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas then New Years who is hosting the events now?

Shopping experience here in Cebu is pretty different than like at the stores at home. Here you are greeted by all the store employees as you pass “Sir, Mum” everywhere you go. You stop to just look at something and you have 5 store employee’s there “Sir, Mum this would look good, that’s a great looking tie, you would look good in that” practicing their sales skills. In all actuality it looks like a piece of trash but anything for a sale. Too bad they don’t get a commission. One day I just stopped to look at a wallet while Shauna was shopping and I had 8 employee’s telling me what kind of a wallet I wanted and oh yet it would look good in my pocket. I would go away and try sneaking back but each time at least 5 employees was right there on top of me telling me how wonderful that wallet would look in my pocket. Finally I stopped, called them all around and asked them if they knew what it was I was looking for. How could they then tell me how great it would be? Asked them if they were afraid I would steal something and told them that they could frisk me when I left if they wanted to but I would prefer to shop alone. They still hovered about 10 feet away with their backs to me but glaring over their shoulders at me. On one occasion there were 10 checkout counters and they were all fully staffed with at least 4 people per booth doing nothing, but only one of them was working. I had to go to 6 of them before I found one that was open to pay for my purchase. I thought if I tried to walk out maybe one of them would be willing to take my money but “my position” told me not to do it, so I searched until I found one that was open. Very interesting!

Hanging out at the temple. I have never seen a church house with so much activity going on as I have around the Stake Center here on Temple Square. There are meetings on top of meetings. People just hang out. Shauna thinks it’s because they have no place else to go so they all come to the church and visit. The parking lot is full of people, not cars. On Sundays there are usually 10-15 cars in the parking lot but groups of people everywhere. You all are aware of my sleeping patterns; well this morning at 3:30 there was a guy just sitting on one of the granite planters looking up at the temple. When I looked out again at 5:00 AM he was still there. Checked again at 6:00 AM but he was gone. There is a basketball court at one end of the parking lot and there usually a group of young men, Missionaries or the security guards or some guys of that age group playing basket ball every morning around 5:30 when the sun comes up, until about 8:30AM. People just seem to come to the temple square and just hang out. Something else very interesting!

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