This is part ten of a ten part series chronicling Paul’s Mission. It is told mostly in his own words using excerpts from his letters and photographs sent home.
I think they upped the mail box capacity I have 15 Megs free now. Before you were sending the pictures with Picasa I think but they were too small. If you go into the menu under tools options email you can change what size it sends them. Try 800 or 1024 pixels. I sent you a package in the mail. It has a bike in it. Transfers are in two weeks and it looks like they are going to move me somewhere. I’m in Oakland right now. I got an Easter Medical form was that the package?
[I’d like] that Australian licorice and some beef jerky. Feel free to open up the bike and put it together if you’ld like. It cost $13 to ship it home. We have some special account that makes everything really cheap to ship. There is one more week after this one in the transfer. We don’t have anyone scheduled as of now. Jovanic, a 20 year old from Mexico, is doing really well except he smokes so it looks like it might take a little more time. He lives with his member uncle who went to church for the first time in 13 years the other day. I don’t know where I’ll go. There are only two areas left that I haven’t been to, Hayward and Livermore. So it will be back to an old area or one of those two. It should be good.
I called them and they said we would have 100% coverage for the visit. The doctor just gave me some samples that supposedly aren’t very effective to see if it would work. There is a prescription that works well but it costs $150 and the insurance coverage is spotty so he thought we would try the samples first.
I’m moving back to Concord. I don’t remember what time it starts but it is in the afternoon so if you call before your church it should be alright. The doctor gave me some samples to try on my toe. I can’t think of anything else now for my birthday. Maybe you can save it up for later. My companion is a tennis player and he is short. I haven’t counted the times we went but we are allowed to go once a transfer to the temple.
[We use] Windows XP professional. They use the Mission Office System (MOS) which is a custom-made Access based management application. MOS keeps track of the finances and prints checks. It also holds all of the information about the missionaries, transfers, apartments, and so forth.
Microsoft office 2003.
Novel GroupWise (email).
Roxcio 7 burning software.
Custom vehicle management software (access based).
Convert Data Entry (CDE), MLS stripped down to just enter data (java based).
Missionary travel request custom software.
They have custom wireless client software for security.
Jaunt rapid assist for tech support (like vnc).
They are all wirelessly networked. One of the standard church issue copy machines is attached to the network for printing. They also have a Dell 5100 color laser that is nice. I was using Google Earth too for the referrals from headquarters (people that call on the commercials) and the visitor center. MOS has an ad hoc database that you can export and get at the data. I built a little script to throw out the names and addresses of the referrals to a text file, then import them into Google Earth and geocode them automatically. Then you just look at the map and assign the referrals to which area and ward they fall into. I bought Google Earth to add the capability to draw polygons and drew on all the ward boundaries in the mission.
We tracted into an English man the other day that had been to Macclesfield. I talked to some other lady from England and she said Cheshire was nice. Google Earth Pro is $20 a year. You can’t draw polygons with the free version but you can view them. Everything comes set up on a fancy custom windows DVD that you just pop in and hit go. I’m sure every mission office has internet access. We had a cable modem that went through the fancy church filtering system. They are flexible though, if they don’t have internet you can probably have them buy it. The set up in the boxes is open, you have admin rights and can do nearly what ever you want. All of the computer needs and programs are simple in the mission office. It shouldn’t be any problem. [Dad], just learn how to touch type. I really like the new membership software. It’s fancy and the reports are nice. I’d imagine it is cross platform too as it’s completely Java based.
The card came on my birthday and the package the next day. It was really nice. My companion is doing well. He gets a little frustrated sometimes because he can’t understand anything. We have a young couple Juan and Mayra that are doing really well. Also the Relief Society president’s sister, Marcia, is really good. She will probably be baptized soon. You can watch Dora on nickelodeon or cartoon network to help you learn Spanish. As for Steven I’ve got a database of all the Sister missionaries from the last three years. There isn’t any I would recommend but if push comes to shove we’ll round some up for him.
I really liked the Narnia books. Don’t buy anything for Jake yet, all of my stuff is in really great condition and I think he will be able to use most of it. All of my shirts still look really good and my slacks. The flight plans have changed. I will be on flight 3925 and not on 3957.
Oakland, CA to Salt Lake City, UT
Delta 3925—Operated by Delta Connection Carrier, Skywest Airlines
We have Marcia Baquedano lined up to be baptized on the 18th. We are working to get Roman Mora baptized then too.
On this Fathers day I am happy to count you as a son of mine and to find you coming home soon from your mission. You have done well, thank you. Uncle Mike is planning on being at the airport to see you and to eat with us.