Monday, April 8, 2013

Winter is over!

It looks like we've survived the winter.  I was beginning to think it would never end.  Getting through the "mud season" was a little messy.  And there are still some shady spots that have some ice lingering and slowly melting.  The parking lot just outside our apartment door is one of these.  So, if we tip toe through the parking lot to get to the sidewalk, we're usually OK. 

Here are some photos of a bus on one of those muddy days.  On some of the busses, the windows were so dirty, you could not see out to know where you were.  So you just have to pay attention and count stops and look out the door when it opens. 

It was also hard to read the bus numbers sometimes.  Some of the busses had their numbers written by erasing some of the mud.  Like "Wash Me" that you see on dirty cars.
Last week we had a visitor from Moscow, Sister Nechiporova who is the Public Affairs director for the Europe East Area.  We were able to have a couple of meetings with her and some partner organizations.  After one of our meetings, Alan got a phone call, so we wandered around to the side of the building while he took his call.  Here is a tractor that had been used to clear off the remaining snow from the property around the building.  A plow in the front, and brushes in the back.

After I took the photo, I noticed that the workers were inside the tractor having nap time!

This is a statue outside the Nazarbayev Center showing a traditional Kazakh woman cooking and her husband is serenading her!  There were lots of different statues around town to celebrate Nauriz.  But they are mostly taken down now.  There must be a huge warehouse somewhere to store all the decorations they use throughout the year.
This statue is of a traditional horse race game.
We had a nice visit from the Almaty elders as well as the office elders last week.

Here are some of God's Army!  We enjoy having the young missionaries.  They are doing a great work!

And our English group continues to do well.  We even have some people coming that we invited with our poor language skills.  We met a girl on the bus last month that has been coming and the girl that cuts Alan's hair and her friend the seamstress came too.  Our neighbor came and she even gave us a ride home!  Here, Elder A is telling a childhood story of the time he cracked his head and needed stitches while playing "Hide and Seek".  They seemed to get a kick out of that!  We are praying that more of them will ask questions about the gospel and lead to more lessons for the elders.
We enjoyed being able to watch conference.  It's amazing that even though we're halfway around the world, we can still enjoy it with the rest of the church.  Even if it's in the middle of the night, or if we watch it later, it is a blessing to be able to participate.


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