Monday, July 3, 2017

Settling In {missionaryMum.5}

A snippet from Mum's emails home as she settled into life in Valencia during April and her first Easter there.

"Well.......what an interesting Sunday. Valencia 2nd Ward is lovely. Many kisses and hugs....when the Spanish people kiss it is always on both cheeks!  I might have understood every twentieth word!!!!maybe. They speak so fast and run their words together....just like us! We have downloaded the scriptures that have English on one side and Spanish on the other which is great if we can understand which scripture they are looking up! Some people speak English and there are a few South Africans in the Ward who do also.

Mum with Sister Plume, Sister Snowden and Sister Cummings

Sister Plume who they met in Madrid, where she just finished a two year mission serving in the temple. She is in their war and invited them for Easter Sunday lunch. Sister Cummings who doesn't have a companion at the moment, came too and acted as translator.

"Monday was a holiday in Valencia for Saint Vincent!!! The young missionaries invited us for a picnic near the beach......only 3 metro stops from us. Maritim Serreria. We had a lovely day the weather was good and the sea looked beautiful. They Provided  the picnic and with five of them and us two we had a good time."

Sisters Carroll, Cummings, Aguilar, Latu and Stanley.

The picnic at Maritim Serrereria. They all look like they deserve a good rest on their day off.

Just a tad windy, Mum said. 😎

Mum and Sister Snowden had been standing up all day on the concrete floors to do the digitising and now they have these great stools to sit on which makes it a little easier on their backs.

"Tuesday Alejandro, Silvias husband came and went with us to pick up the stools from El Corte Ingles. It was good to sit for a while and work. He doesn't speak any English but we managed okay, he is a lovely man."

"When we get to work each morning we have to set up the camera....calibration, focus, height of camera, we have to open the book and find a sample area and make sure all is right. Then we start clicking!!!!! The book must remain level so depending on where you are in the book we use black covered boards to build up either side. Black card is used under the pages so that all surrounds are black and just the page shows up. The image must appear straight and clean. No bits hanging off the edges or no dirt or dust. We try and flatten out the pages with gloved hands then just click on the switch....this is a bit like a flat mouse and is very sensitive. We must make sure we have no fingers or anything else in the image. The first book I did I had to redo as I had lots of fingers in it. So I have learned to check every image carefully as some books have thousands of pages and no page numbers, so finding the page to retake is very hard. The retake button is great as we can do that if it isn't right as we go. We do have a mask to wear but they are very hot and a bit claustrophobic so we don't usually wear them. We also bought an apron as it is quite dusty and the books can be full of insect droppings. Some are better than others but most have the edges eaten away or holes through the middle. At the moment we stand to do the work but we are going to get a high stool to sit on and that may help the legs and backs a little. The records are civil but are housed in the monastery of the Corpus Christi church. The archives seem to go on forever with the books piled high on top of each other. Salvador is the archivist and luckily he is young and fit. He brings the books to us and takes them back when they are done and we have evaluated our work. The books are uploaded onto the hard drive and each Friday they go to Frankfurt and they check them again and if they are okay they go onto SLC for uploading onto Familysearch. If they are not okay we have to redo!!!! They are very old and some of the writing is faint, or has come through from the other side. The writing is beautiful though. At the moment we are doing wills and deeds."

Mum's first full week working, she did 17 books and 14,000 images.

At the end of April, Mum and Sister Snowden invited 7 young sister missionaries to tea, from 4 wards.

Sisters Latu, Carroll, Aguilar, Stanley, Cummings, Doezie and Brudnicki

 They have set up a Spanish shelf in their apartment. It looks very cute and I'm sure will get very full over the next 18 months. 

At the end of April, Mum also had to go up to Barcelona to organise her residency card to stay longer in Spain. It only lasts one year before it needs renewal, but the one she arrived on, is only a temporary one. The train took 5 hours from Valencia.

 "Arrived in Barcelona at 9.15 to rain and cold. I stayed the night with Elder and Sister Berrett who live not far from the mission office, their calling is YSA/ institute. They were due to go into the MTC on the Monday and the Friday before Elder Oaks called them in and they were called to be Mission President in Mexico.  They are doing three months in Barcelona and then will leave on June 1st to take up that calling. Thursday was a wet and horrible day again. Had my photo taken and then to the Government offices for the finger printing ready for the residency card. Took two hours!!!!  I have to go back in three weeks to have fingerprints done again and pick it up......and it only lasts for one year. I caught the 2.30 train back to Valencia."