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[Comments] (2) thanks for the memories: I forgot to mention that Friday was my farewell party, since this week is Diwali and so everyone is on holiday. I was given a farewell book with some very interesting things to ponder.

One comment, from anonymous (most are signed but this one is not) says: "Hi John, I would write on all the bricks 'I miss you' and hope that i[t] falls on your head so you know how it hurts to miss someone special like you. 'love you John'

Another is not a message to me but a quote as follows: "Happiness is not something you postpone for the future, it is something you design for the present" -- Jim Rohn. I don't know a Jim in our group, but there are a few people I still don't know, like the new guys. Susie thinks it's a properly cited quote. They had nothing else personal to share with me I suppose, but they love quotes like that around these parts.

Many things are also in quotes that leave me quite confused. For example, "Thanks" for all your support, or We sure are going to "miss" you. If I didn't know better, I'd think the quotes are sarcastic. But I do know better and it's not like that at all, though I'm not sure what it is like.

This book is very akin to my Filipino farewell book from the Kong not ten years ago, full of stickers, advice, quotes, stories, and the like. And I love it!

exit stage left: So yesterday was the primary program, which is actually something I've come to dislike. Between the Saturday practice (we skipped it) and practicing during General Conference (to which I take extreme umbrage) it just seems like more of a chore than a valuable presentation.

Maggie knew her line. James 1:5. She really did. But of course she refused to say it, and refused to sit on the stand with her class. I finally got her to sit on the stand by giving her her own chair separate from the other kids. She didn't want to sit by India kids; they are mean to her. She says. Then when it was time for her scripture I took her up to the podium. Silence. She refused to say it other than in my ear, for only me to hear. Not for India people to hear. So I told her to say it with me, which basically left me saying it. She also kept refusing to sing the songs and kept asking if she could come sit with me, which I didn't let her get away with.

In the end she did NOT get a box of Nerds bought in Dubai as a present. I get them because I said the scripture. But at least she sat up there. I guess next year we'll find out if this is really just a shy thing or if it's like she says--just not for Indian people thing. Obviously she's shy but I also think she doesn't like Indians much.

Afterwards they were rewarded with a Domino's pizza party. On a Sunday. Again, seems to defeat the purpose of a primary program when it's polished off with breaking one of the ten commandments. I often feel like kids are made for Primary and not the other way around. Hopefully it'll be a better program back home.


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