Wednesday, September 14, 2016

South Island Trip - Day 1: Nelson & Westport

After we were done with Fiji, we had one more trip to finish off our mission.  This time we would be going to the South Island of New Zealand.

Our South Island trip was planned as a mix of business and pleasure. We looked forward to meeting various family history center directors and taking electronic folder of training videos and resource files we had organized to install at each place we visited. We also looked forward to seeing some of the beautiful scenery.


We flew from Auckland to Nelson, arriving shortly before noon.  We went directly to the Family History Center where we were met by the director, Sister Maria Robinson, and the Stake Technology Specialist. Sister Robinson had prepared a lovely lunch for us which was much appreciated.  All the equipment was working fine and they seemed to have a thriving FHC serving both church members and the community. We downloaded the training files, took inventory of computer tag numbers, and talked with Sister Robinson about how things were going.  After a brief visit we were back on the road and on to our next destination.

Nelson FHC Director, Sister Maria Robinson

We had about a three hour drive to Westport.  The weather was fine so we were able to enjoy the lovely views along the way. 

 We had dinner at a local bistro and then headed to the Family History Center.  There we met with the director, Jeanne Stechman.  While the Westport FHC is quite small it was well organized and seemed to be well utilized.  Sister Stechman had been helping a number of different people find family names to take to the temple.  She was very appreciative of the resources we brought and was a delight to visit with.

By the time we got done there we were ready to head back to our room and get some rest.  It had been a long day of travel and we were tuckered!

For that night we stayed at 
a hostel called "The Art Hotel". It was an interesting place where lots of young backpackers would stay during their travels.  There were some dorm rooms, but we had booked a private room. We suspected we were probably the first Mormon Missionaries to have ever been there.  We were just happy to find an inexpensive accommodation that was clean and had comfortable beds.  We got a good night's rest and headed out early the next morning.

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