Tuesday, July 22, 2014

We made it to the Mission Office on Wednesday, July 16th.  We met with President Andersen and received our assignment to Pikeville, Bledsoe Co., Tennessee.  Presently they are part of the Crossview Ward in the church which is about 35 miles from Pikeville, and the Stake President is really pushing to make it a branch by itself.  For the last 9 months Elder Stradling (19 years old when he started) has had 5 companions and has worked his tail end off to accomplish this.  We are here to assist.
This is Pikeville, Tenn.  It's population is about 1,878.  I think they must have counted the dogs.  It is the county seat of Bledsoe Co. which has about 12,000.  Its elevation is 864' above sea level.  The temperature has been in the 70s during the last week (read it and weep, Tucson).  They say it will get hotter.  

This is Dollar General.  This is my favorite store....because it is the only store where we purchased our bed sheets and all other furnishings for our home.  Who would have every guessed I would be a fan of Dollar General?  We are also patrons of Save Alot and Piggly Wiggly grocery stores.  Food is much more expensive here.  I think we will have to give up milk because it is $3.78.  A head of garlic was $3.50.  Our first night here we purchased a can of Pork and Beans and a pkg of wieners, only to find out the can opener in our house didn't work.  So we had hot dogs.  The next night we had the pork and beans with wieners.  We are doing better now, but finding the time to cook has been difficult.
This is the house we live in.  It is known as the blue house on Birchwood St.  You can't see the beautiful Magnolia tree in front.  It is a nice house, but pretty bare.  We have 3 bedrooms (only 1 room has a bed) a bathroom where the water pressure is so low that you have to stand right under the shower head to get any water; a nice kitchen with no dishwasher or garbage disposal; a washer and dryer; and a living room with a love seat, couch, 1 end table, a small dining table w/ chairs.  I will take pictures later.
This is our neighbor (well, 2nd house down).  The Church of God of Prophecy.  We have trying to contact the owner because we would like to use this building for Sunday meetings  The Church of God of Prophecy only uses this building quarterly.There are so many churches in this town, some with beautiful buildings.  Everyone is very nice and friendly.

I joke about this town, because it is so small, but we really are beginning to enjoy it here.  The people are UNIQUE.  This is a struggling town with very, very high unemployment.  So much of this town does not live within the city.  We travel many miles up and down what they call mountains.  It is very green and lush.  I will blog again as soon as time permits.  Hopefully we will have our own internet then.

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