Sunday, April 10, 2016

We are back in the saddle again!

It was our first full week since returning from our quick trip home. It was a busy week, especially given all that needed to be done to get caught up. You might recall that we were in the midst of zone conferences and car inspections when we left for Utah. Well, we were only halfway through these when we left. Our fellow office couple finished the inspections for us, but this didn’t include entering the findings from the inspections into the data base and making all the follow-up phone calls to help the missionaries arrange the needed repairs, tire and oil changes, and other requirements.
In addition I have a Chevrolet Colorado that I must get ready to sell. It requires a few repairs, most of which are now done, so in this coming week I need to arrange to have it detailed and then, once everything is done, it will be priced and sold. No, I don’t set the price but do have some input. Each week I receive a couple of calls from people who are interested in buying a mission car, and several are interested in the truck so we will see, once it is priced, who is still interested. As for the truck, it is in great shape and I wouldn’t mind having it myself but that would be wrong so I’m not even thinking about it. I’ll include a picture so you can see for yourself. 

I also received a call from Nissan that we will soon have a few more Rogues to plug into the fleet. I will then take some aging Chevy Cruzes and Subaru Imprezas out of the fleet. Cars are taken out of the fleet before they get too many miles (kilometers in our case) on them to be attractive to potential buyers. I have a list of about 15 people who call almost weekly wondering if we have a car for sale. Many of those who call are people who have previously purchased a mission car. My sister, Ann, who is serving in the New York New York North Mission recently purchased one of the cars from their fleet and will drive this home when she returns. She ended up needing a car when her companion, who had brought her own car, finished her mission and returned home. Anyway, the point I am making is that the cars have been well maintained, are sold before they become high mileage cars, and are fixed up and detailed before they are sold. People who are aware of mission car sales policies feel these cars are real bargains.

The most challenging thing about my job is the difficulty finishing a given task before a call takes me in a different direction, and before I can get back to the first task there is another call and another direction, and so my day goes. The formula goes like this:        90 cars X two young missionaries /car = a busy day. I mention this because it took me three days to successfully enter all the inspection findings, but the task is now done.

I should also mention another thing which took quite a bit of time this past week. In the mission I also serve as an MMA, Mission Medical Advisor. Before I tell you of why I am mentioning this, first some background; the person who has the responsibility for overseeing missionary medical issues in each mission is the mission president’s wife (MPW). When the Elders or Sisters have a medical (or emotional issue), they first call her. Where there is an obvious need for immediate attention she calls a physician or clinic from a list we have and she arranges for immediate care. For colds, back pain, sprains and strains, and other more minor things, she calls an MMA to assist her in determining the best course of action. For the part of the mission around Calgary, this is me. MMAs do not provide treatment but advise the MPW, and this is often best done by seeing the missionary and providing an assessment. I then advise the Sister Miles and make an entry in the missionary’s electronic medical file. Now back to what I was about to say, - this past week there was an usual flurry of sprains, strains, and the like which needed to be seen so this managed to take some time out of my busy week as well. Lest this may sound like I am complaining, I am not. I do like to keep my assessment skills up and it gives me a wonderful opportunity to get to know the missionaries I serve even better.

We are preparing for the visit of Elders Christofferson and Martino, which happens on Saturday, the 16th. It isn’t often we get to meet with a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles and one of the Seventies. All of the Elders and Sisters will be coming to Calgary for this event. This is a real treat, and it presents a unique opportunity to have most of the cars in the mission in one location. The unique opportunity is this; we were able to arrange for a man to come to the north mission Zone Conferences and, while we did our car inspections, he made the rounds and fixed the rock chips in the windshields. Now we will have the opportunity for the remaining cars from the south mission to have the same treatment.

Speaking of rock chips, at that last car inspection which we did just prior to leaving for Utah, we had the window guy also fix a ding in our windshield and we were good to go, except – on our return trip to Canada, just before crossing the border, we picked up another ding and it is bigger than the first.

Thank you for the many emails and FaceTime wishes surrounding my recent birthday. It was a good birthday even though we were traveling back to Canada on the actual day. I also received some nice gifts as well. I will include a picture Kathy took of me in my new tie, which I received from my daughter, Tana. It is a great tie.


I bear testimony of the reality of a loving Heavenly Father and of His Son Jesus Christ, whom we gratefully serve.  

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