Monday, December 19, 2011


19 December 2011

Dear Homefront,

Here it is, my new address:

620 South Main
Apt B8
Blackstone, VA 23824

This last week I sent home some packages. The one that is addressed to myself, I would ask that it is just put in my room. It's most of the letters I've recieved since being out and they were just taking up way too much room so this practice of sending them home may become a regular thing.

The other package is my old camera. I got a new one that is a lot slimmer and quite a bit nicer while still being cost effective (getting it was a whole pile of drama though (more later). Feel free to use it if you wish, but I kept my memory card so you'll need to get a new one. The new backpack I had my eye on however I did not get. The price I remembered seeing was for the smaller one that didn't even have as much room as the one I have now.

Now then, the drama involved in getting my new camera ... So we were at WalMart and I decided to get a camera there just while we were getting our weekly groceries, a good idea I thought. So Elder McElhany (who was also being transferred and thereby didn't really care what was bought) went with me over to the Electronics department and I weighed my options and picked out the Sony Cybershot and everything seemed to go smoothly. We met back up with the rest of the other Elders and we left. In the car, I decided to get a look at my new camera so I cut the professional looking sealing sticker and opened up the box ... Wherein I found a beat up and 10 year old looking Canon brick ... Needless to say, I was less than pleased. We were nearly back to the apartment so we took our groceries in and put them away. Then we went back to WalMart, where I got to wait for the corporate slowness to take place. I waited in line at the customer service desk, then they had to call a manager in to Customer Service, then the manager walked me back to the photo/electronics, then the manager and one of the photo workers went back up to customer service asking me to wait there, then the photo worker came back and said the manager would just be a minute, she then pulled out a new camera and opened it up so that we could verify that it was correct this time, then after 20 minutes of waiting, a new manager came back, and after I explained the situation once again, refunded the original purchase and rung me out again so ... all in all, it took nearly an hour to complete the whole process. But I finally have a new camera and I like it a lot.

Then after stressing most the day, I got to celebrate my last Monday in Tidewater YSA by joining the branch for their FHE activity. On the agenda that evening was to take a tour of the USS Albany, a fast attack submarine that was in port at the time, (unfortunately no pictures were allowed on the Naval Base or on the sub) but that was very interesting and rather enjoyable.

And now I'm in the Burkeville branch ... out in the boonies ... We cover a handful of small towns of mostly farmers, laborers, and hunters. There are lots of long winding roads through the woods and lots of open land. There are also a lot of military personnel here as well due to us being so close to Fort Pickett, one of the largest Virginia National Guard bases. I also might get to see a tank or two while I'm here. On one of the main roads which drives right between the fort proper and the artillery ranges, there are five "Tank Crossing" areas.

Elder Eborn knows the area and the people pretty well and has been here for almost 9 months. He's a pretty old missionary and will be going home in April. He's really laid back and likes to laugh and have a good time. He's a bit of a jock and loves both football and basketball.

Well, I think that's it for now ... oh yeah ... MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

With love,
Elder John Y. Roberts

PS: No, I haven't been able to write Bishop, however the missionary department is supposed to keep him and President Welch updated on my whereabouts and well-being. I got both the bishopric's card and the ward care package. Please give them my thanks.

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