Thursday, July 30, 2015

"Soft Rain"

P.S.  Here is our Guatemala version of "Soft Rain"
 (Known here as "Chipichipi".)
"Rain falls
soft rain at my window 
Every butterfly has hurried away
All the honeybees have called it a day

(Don't tell anyone that someone in the office has been found sleeping on the job!)
(Here is our favorite apartment inspection--todo bien...wouldn't you like to come home to this?)
(The Elders received cookies--galletas "Bien hecho!--Well done!")
(and then we gave them more things to arrange.  Do you see a Princess and a pea in this picture?)

And the columbine are bending their heads in the rain."
"Rain falls
soft rain making puddles

for the children's feet

(Okay, there are some bigger children's feet here...who says missionaries don't dance?  You just need to grow a foot or two and come back as a senior!"

(Meet Chino Amarito.  He earns his livelihood with a big smile.  Frequently Chino lets us know he hopes to find his way home on the bus...There are no cots in the church, although Hermana Starkey did get locked in one evening late...)

 (Hoorah for 12 plasticized pillows for new missionaries!  Extra blankets, and even a pair of pajamas.  Who says we are not ready for 72 hours?)
the puddles are sweet

(and so is the dessert or postre, and sonrisas or smiles at missionary gatherings!)

(and Primary activities...cookie dough trumps plasticina or playdough--little fingers celebrate the Day of the Father!)

And the skater-bug fleet finds small pools a treat
(Our entymologist friend found a new way to use spark plugs for art!)
(Here are my Guatemala 'Snickers', "Just for you!" explains a new friend from Salamá--a carmel wrap just a little like Grandma Gee's and Ann Tooles.)

And the columbine 
are bending their heads in the rain."
"While the rain is falling there's a quietness about the world;
While the thunder is calling

there's a quiet hush about the world

A time to remember the beautiful things,
To look for tomorrow and your fondest dreams..."

(When I told the office we need more wonder in our "marvelous work and a wonder"--Elder W. quipped, "I wonder where the 900 Quetzals went!!?")
It is a wonder, however, how many bedrock friends a person can make in a matter of months.
"Rain falls
soft rain through the tree boughs

Bringing ev'ning birds a quick friendly bath

washing afternoon dust 

from my wide garden path

(The mission manual says, notify President when your companion abandons you.  Tell me if you think this includes stopping to grab pictures on the side of the road!)

(These flowers belong to George and Elsie, who built their own home from scratch on a pine tree reservation.  Along with flowers, they planted 1000 coffee plants to pick, gather, dry, and roast their own beans to drink.  After this, George encountered a previous older couple missionaries in the grocery store, questioned if he could read one of their books, and found President and Sister Curtiss on their doorstep the same day.  Months later, they made a decision to forego coffee, so they could have greater be part something in which they believe.  "There is Beauty All Around" is Elsie's favorite hymn.  Can you tell?  George threatened to charge me a Quetzal per photo.  I will be in debtors prison if he collects!)
(This yellow ground cover matches Tegucigalpa temple grounds.  I had to grab it and run, to remember "beautiful things"!)

(The wall for a new house they are building next door to their first house reminded me of Adam and Eve.  They really love each other!  With the sweat of their brows, they leave color in their wake!) 

(Our paths continue to pass through gardens heading to Baja Verapaz, most weekends.)

And the columbine are bending their heads in the rain."

"Rain  falls
soft rain at my window
I will go outside where sleepy rain blows

Feel the wet on my face, feel the wet on my clothes
And like the columbine
I want to bow my head in the rain."

 (Sorry, the chihuahua wanted to include its head.
It is included for Zoey, to celebrate a high FIVE!")
 (and Riley and Kaleb can do rock paper scissors to claim the rana, or frog--perched on Saturday's nursery room tile)
 (Elders here are doing rock paper scissors on who can have the most pie, or the most afternoon appointments...whichever is sweetest!)

We learned at our district meeting this morning from Elder W. (above) that the best way to tie a tie (or for that matter, just about anything else) to begin with your arms folded.  Sister Gomez wins the prize in solving the puzzle.  And the rest of us win the prize, when we fold our arms and bow our head in the rain...and clouds, and sunshine.

We love you!
 (Elder B. was excited to hear that the Starkeys will be here for his birthday in December...Try to imagine bringing "pouch" or mail, when the missionaries discover friends at home have open arms.  Keep up your notes, prayers, and thoughts for missionaries--each is counted as a blessing, one by one.)

Happy end of summer to you,
Elder and Hermana Starkey


  1. Hahaha, your sleeping picture is probably my all time favorite of your history of blogging. Maria and I both got a good laugh from that :)

  2. Hahaha, your sleeping picture is probably my all time favorite of your history of blogging. Maria and I both got a good laugh from that :)

  3. I love your pictures and the song, as you well know!! I love you, too!!!