Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Trek - Day 1

Ready to leave and hoping for the best.

Hughie loading up.

Greetings from President Silva

Just met our kids.
Unaware of what awaits us.

"God hath not given us a spirit of fear,
but of power, and of love,
and of sound mind.
Be not therefore ashamed
of the testimony of our Lord."
2 Timothy 1: 7-8

We drove to our starting destination in a truck.
The kids piled into three buses with their gear.
We had a three-hour drive, lunch, and loaded our handcart.

Our family was first in a company of 13 handcarts.  The pioneers averaged about 8 and a half miles per day.  Our company pushed and pulled, up and down, and all around - a total of 10 miles on our first day.  Needless to say, I couldn't keep up. I sent my family on their way.  Me, I just kept plodding along - last in.

We arrived at our first campsite at dusk.  It had been a long and tiring day.  We set up camp and before our meal we ended our day with prayer.  Happily our meal had been  prepared for us.  We heartily ate soup,  homemade bread, and brownies too.  We were off to bed - not good for much else but sleep.  We even got a little rain that night.

The girls minus me
Just getting started

The guys
Ready to go
One story I shared with our family, before we hit the trail, was of Joseph F. Smith coming home from his mission in Hawaii.  He had joined a wagon train in California.  Some ruffians entered their camp. Most of the people Joseph was traveling with hid because these hoodlums were threatening to harm anyone who was Mormon.  Joseph F. Smith walked up to one of the intruders.  The man, with pistol in hand, demanded, "Are you a Mormon?"  Joseph responded, "Yes siree; dyed in the wool; true blue, through and through."  The man grasped his hand and said, "Well you are the . . . pleasantest man I ever met!  Shake hands, young fellow.  I am glad to see a man that stands up for his convictions." (See Gospel Doctrine, 518 or Sheri L. Dew's talk, "True Blue, Through and Through," BYU-Idaho Devotional, 16 March 2004)

As a reminder of the story, I then gave everyone a blue handkerchief to use on the trail.  Throughout our trek I would periodically shout out, "What are ye?"

And they'd reply, sometimes not so enthusiastically, but they proved it every day,

"True, Blue,
Through and Through!"


  1. This experience ranks right up there as the most difficult, yet most spiritual experiences of my daughter's life! The "Women's Pull" was especially moving... and the boys were crying, as they watched the women struggle up the hill. To sit around the campfire at night, with one of the brethren playing "Come Come Ye Saints" on his harmonica... I can't imagine... and although she never wants to repeat it, I know she is grateful she did it!