On Saturday night we went to a 30 year reunion organized by the young adults that was, just by serendipity, held at the Reading chapel! Just as we drove into the crammed parking lot we looked at each other and thought, “YIKES! What if Charity brings investigators here?” We are having fun playing the game of “keep away” as it’s a mission rule not to see parents until you leave the mission and she still has about five and a half weeks left!
As it turned out, she didn’t show up….but lots of people who knew her did! This cute woman with her husband went on the very first teach with her when she just arrived. Her companion Sister Pedersen had called her to go with them and she said that it was so fun to figure out who she was because she used to sit behind all our kids at Stake Conference when she was a little girl. She said she wanted to be friends with our kids and could even remember what I was wearing! She was so thrilled to see an Eyre show up again in the mission!
They had organized a roast pig dinner for about 250 people with old pictures of life in the late 70’s slowing on a big screen, an old movie playing on another wall and a great band for dancing. The pig was HUGE and cost these great organizers 500 pounds which is about $850! T
Just as we were going through the line someone else grabbed my arm and this lovely woman whispered in my ear, “We took your daughter out for a birthday dinner last night!” It was almost like reaching out and touching that cute Sister Eyre! This couple was amazing! They had met on the Internet. She is an American. He is a British father who had lost his wife to cancer and was left with six great kids…ages about 16 to an infant. She took the plunge and came over and married him about three years ago and according to him, was doing a great job!
The girl on the left was one of the singles.
People just kept coming up to us, saying what a WONDERFUL missionary Charity was and reminding us of things that had happened when we were here. Pay day!
Next we decided to sneak over to Sister Eyre’s flat and take a picture. Since I had her address in my head, we put in the GPS and wallah. We took a video from the church right up to her house and my heart was pounding like a spy and we were almost sure she was out on a teach but we would have died, had she walked up to her door (although she never would have seen us). Here it is. See the 223 above the door:
This is a school directly across the street:
On the way home we swung by Basingstoke to meet the great and amazing Atkins family! They are such a terrific family and we just basked in being in the beautiful atrium on the back of their house where Sister Eyre and her companion had so many wonderful teaches. Their little 11 year old George was so adorable! He just sat through that whole conversation of about an hour and a half like a champ!
When we left, we decided to see how long dad’s arm was and all squish onto their love seat together for a picture. Sorry I’m so big…I was sitting on Dad’s lap!
Then George took this one:
It was such a pleasure to see this family who have had such a hard year having lost their little daughter to cancer. They had planted a garden in her memory (pink roses) and also had a beautiful dovecote where they kept doves named after the “their” missionaries. Charity wasn’t home.
Ah, there’s nothing like missionary work! What a beautiful family!!!
More coming about our visit to Epsom yesterday and our missionary reunion coming up today as soon as we can find the next Internet connection! This is the hardest place yet!