My last week in Nausori, I played the piano for our ward missionary leader’s funeral. The commander of the Fijian military was in attendance, along with a bunch of guys in uniform. I got to attend my first Fijian funeral, and only attended two days of meals. I think there were more though. The food was very fancy and very tasty, and a nice way to finish up my service in Nausori.
I’m in Lautoka. It’s a city, with Fijian areas on the outskirts. Apparently, it’s the best place to be for Diwali, so I’m excited for Wednesday. They’ve been lighting off fireworks at all times for the past week, and we’ll be getting plenty of sweets. Driving into Lautoka, I felt like I was going home. We have a great senior couple here, and they introduced us to the area in their air-conditioned truck. We’ve already met a lot of the members, and they’re ready and willing to help with the work. There’s some returned missionaries here (one served in Ghana and the other served in the Phillipines) that have been showing us the area since it’s been whitewashed (both missionaries before us got transferred out). They changed it from an elders area to a sisters area, and the people have been telling us they’ve been begging for sisters. We received a very warm welcome, and we’ve got a full dinner list for the week. I feel much more comfortable here, but most of the people think it’s hot. It doesn’t feel like November, and the weather is mild by Mesa, Arizona standards. I’d say it’s an Arizona April or May. There’s sand and dirt here, not just mud. The palm trees are beautiful, and the same things grow here as other places. There’s just fewer of them. There’s also a cactus garden at my new flat! The whole house is painted pink, by the way.

Oh, I have a new companion and I love her very much. She’s a very consecrated, determined missionary. She’s from Australia, but her family is Tongan. She also only emails an hour and a half, so that’s a bit of a bummer. Just know that I’m well taken care of.


Sister Hawkins

{The photo was taken by Elder Van Roosendaal.}



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