When we got on the plane in Hong Kong, a sweet young lady (maybe in her early 40s) sat next to me. She asked about my badge and told me that she is 'searching' for a church at this time. She asked for some literature . . . it was all in our checked suitcases . . . but i did have a pass along card that I was able to give to her. She asked about our mission, who paid for it and told me she is looking for a church. She said that she has been to several and they all tell her they are true. Sound familiar? She said that recently she has been attend the Jehovah's Witness Church. So, I preceded to tell her that our Church is the restored gospel of Jesus Christ; that his gospel had been taken from the earth after his death. I told her about how a young man Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ and that the gospel of Jesus Christ had been restored to the earth in these latter days. She really seemed interested. So I got her name and address and will pass it along to the referral department at church headquarters. She is Filipino but lives with her German husband and 2 kids in Germany. She is here visiting her mother for 18 days. Maybe she will be a golden lead for missionaries in Germany . . . . :)
The mission put us up in a hotel in Manila for 2 nights to help us get some of our lost sleep and adjust to the time change. We also need to get drivers licenses before we go on to Angeles. So that will be our first order of the day on Monday. The hotel is very nice. We are on the 21st floor so we have a beautiful view of the city. There is a very expensive area of homes that we can see out our window. I would love to drive through the area to get a better look at the homes, but I don't think we will be able to do that.
Our hotel is connect to a very LARGE mall. I don't think I have ever been to a mall this large before! Since the internet in the hotel is very expensive, we can come out in the mall and connect to wireless that is free. So I am sitting in the mall at a yogurt shop writing this.
Back up to yesterday. . . . we were met in the Manila airport by a young man named Clem. He and the van driver loaded all of our luggage into the van . . . not sure if we could since we were so tired! They took us to the Holiday Inn hotel in downtown Manila. One of Michael's friends told me I would love everything about the Philippines except the traffic. . . he may be right. It was a little crazy, but our driver, Ernie, did a great job of getting us to the hotel safely!
First thing I did was take a shower . . . I felt so gross after 18+ hours in the air . . . not including the lay overs in San Francisco and Hong Kong. It sure felt good to be clean again! Then it was nap time. Neither myself or Wade could keep our eyes open any longer. We enjoyed about 3 hours of napping before Wade woke me up and told me we needed to go get dinner. We ate at a TGI Fridays next to the hotel. We started to walk around th mall, but we were both so tired. Wade was really out of it . . .the loss of sleep had caught up to him! So back to the hotel and to bed we went. I think we both slept until 6am this morning. I am finally feeling like I can make it through the day again!
We had a wonderful buffet breakfast here at the hotel. We are going to a 2pm church meeting this afternoon with our new friend Clem and his family. It will exciting to meet with the saints here in the Philippines.
As we drove in from the airport, I saw different types of homes. Some were very much like homes we saw in Egypt and Mexico. These I am sure are where some of the poorest people live. Other homes were a little nicer, but most were more like apartments. I'm sure we will see more of the poverty that is here as we travel to Angeles tomorrow.
I have taken several pictures, but will post them at a later time. For now, I will tell you that I am happy to be here and I am looking forward to doing the Lord's work here in this part of his vineyard!