This turned out to be another interesting week. We went to Gallup on Monday to do some shopping and to get price quotes from Home Depot for small studio-type apartments to replace the Elders' RV trailers. Owen will turn in his plans for those and we will wait and see what happens.
Tuesday we went to the Center, but there was hardly anyone there and they were closing early because of the holiday. So we decided to go and do some visiting. We knocked on several homes, but no one answered. At one home a guy met us in the driveway, he was cordial, but told us with all due respect they liked their privacy. We took that as a 'go away and leave us alone.' Later we found out that from around the first to the fifth and then again around the fifteenth, very few people are home because they get their checks and then head to Gallup or other places to do their shopping.
Owen got a call on Tuesday that the trailer in Tsaile (Say.lee) was still having problems. We got up early on New Years Day and headed out. We went to the senior couples' trailer (the
Rogers) because the Elders were there. I told them I didn't remember a New Year's Day when I was up early enough to see the sun rise. They laughed and said that they didn't remember when they had ever gone to bed on New Years Eve so early (10:30 p.m.).
When Owen checked out the trailer, it was definitely having problems (carbon monoxide). He decided to pull the furnace out and have it checked/and or fixed in Gallup the next day. Since it was still early, we decided to go on up to Bluewater to the District Senior Couples' party. We were glad we were able to go. All nine of the couples were there. They had a nice dinner, visited, watched a video "People of Destiny", and played games. It was a nice afternoon. After we watched the video, Sister England (our blind sister) commented that she had never seen that movie before. Everyone just kind of sat there wondering how to respond. Finally someone started to laugh and we all did then. Sister England then commented that she has seen the movie now. She is a very special person and easy to overlook the fact that she is blind because she can do anything.
We took the furnace to Gallup and the guy was able to fix it. He said that 109 parts per million of carbon monoxide was normal. This furnace was putting out 2200 parts per million. He said that those young men must be doing something right and that the good Lord was looking out for them because they should have been dead. So we were on the road again for Tsaile. Owen put the furnace in, but couldn't get it to start up. He finally quit, and the Elders said they had an electrician friend they would have check it.
Owen fretted and worried about it and wondered what to do. He even called Doyle Jensen, his electrician friend. Saturday he decided to head back up there. The Senior Couple, the Rogers, have been without a car for the past two months waiting to get the engine replaced in it. In Tsaile there is Dine' College (around 800 students), a gas station, and a health clinic. That is all! They have to go to Chinle or Gallup to shop. So we took the van up there to let them use until they get their car back.
This time Owen was able to figure out the problem and get the furnace running. Hurray!
Our little Branch had 42 people to Church today, even two of the people we have met at the Senior Center. Some even drew us maps as to how to find their homes, which will be really helpful. No one has an address, just PO boxes. So you have to know your directions, count the roads, rocks, ditches, or pine trees in order to find them. Directions are a problem because I am one-quarter turn off on them. When we are going north, I think it is west. (No surprise, right sisters?!) Hopefully, I can get oriented soon.
I was talking to Natalie today. She told of a lady in their ward that bore her testimony and talked about her nephew who is serving a mission in Farmington, New Mexico. She said that they lived in a little RV that had been having furnace problems. The furnace would turn off in the middle of the night. They were waking up with headaches and how he felt that they should leave the vent open. They had had someone come and check the furnace and it was putting out enough carbon monoxide to kill them Afterwards Clinton got up and bore his testimony about the very same story only from his father's standpoint who is also serving a mission in Farmington. What a small world we live in. How grateful we are that the Lord was watching over and protecting those young men.
We were getting ready to leave the Senior Center on Friday when a man came in. Owen had been asking around about the fire protection capabilities in the area. The director introduced us to the man, and he invited us to the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) meeting at 1:00 p.m. When we got there, we found out that it was the meeting of the Chapter Council, and the man we met was the president of the Chapter. WOW! Are we special or what? Owen presented some ideas to help them, and they seemed interested. Their nearest response team is in Sanders, about 30 miles away.
Things are starting to pick up and doors open. We are going to try and do a lot of visiting this week, providing we don't get another service call.
We send our love to all of you. We feel very fortunate to have the special family and friends that we do.
Elder and Sister Olsen