Sunday, 7 June 2015

Salt Lake City - 4th April

We met up with the Walters at Lola's house at 10am. We'd decided we'd hike from there up to Ensign Peak, overlooking Salt Lake City. It was another glorious, warm day.

At the top, Dan gave me a couple of sheets he'd printed out about the history of Ensign Peak, to read out to everyone. It was really good, and I really felt the spirit. It felt like a special place, especially knowing that some Endowments were carried out there before the temple was built.

Nice seeing the kids with their pen pals!

We then went back to our houses, and at noon Scott picked up the Walters and bought them to our's, so we could all walk down to attend the Saturday afternoon session on Conference together. It was lovely walking down - such a good atmosphere!

At Temple Square we split up. We had arranged to meet up with Chase Huntzinger, the son of some of our US military friends who had lived in Huntingdon. It was great to see him all grown up! He's not long been back off his mission. (Harry was having a bit of a strop about having his picture taken at this point, because he was in the middle of drawing a picture!)

Also while we were hanging around outside the Tabernacle, I saw David Sessions just walking by! He was also the son on some of our US military friends from Huntingdon, and I was his youth Sunday School teacher a few years back!
We also bumped into the Robinsons from Northampton, who Lucy had been to the concert with the night before.

Scott had arranged to meet up with his cousin Dean Cryer, and his family, who now live in Canada but were in Salt Lake City on holiday too!

It was fun seeing the place fill up, with loads of Mormons everywhere, plus a few protesters with placards (which made no sense to me at all, especially the bit about Mormons being drunks?!!)
We queued up at our entrance number, but then saw the Walters again who told us we had to go and check our bigger bags in, so the boys went ahead, while Lucy and I went to check our cameras in, and found them again inside the Conference Centre. We were in the middle of the middle level.

The front of the Conference Centre.

Conference was great! We were in the session where at the beginning we get the chance to sustain our leaders, and have the church reports. When President Uchtdorf asked if there were any opposed, a few people in the audience shouted out 'Opposed! Opposed!' We were a bit surprised, but President Uchtdorf handled it entirely cooly, and noted the opposition, telling them to speak with their local leaders about their concerns. I wasn't sure if this happened every time in conference, but apparently it's the first time it's happened in a long time. By the time we got home that night, there were already 'Mormon Memes' made up about it, which we found hilarious!
Anyway, it didn't bother me really. People have the right to express their opposition (though they are asked to raise their hands if they oppose, just as those who sustain raise their hands - not just yell out.) It just made me feel sure about my own sustaining of our leaders.
The conference talks were all so good. I made notes and went away with a lot to think about.

After conference, we met up with the Walters again, who were flying back to Idaho that evening. Scott, Jack and Tom left then, to get some food before the Priesthood Session of conference, and Lucy, Harry, the Walters and I walked back to our house.
Tyler using one of the flags left out for pedestrians to cross the road and stop any traffic with!

We weren't quite sure then what the plan was, so I popped up with the Walters to Lola's house, and she had prepared food, so Dan drove me back down to pick up Lucy and Harry, so we could all go back to Lola's.
We had a pleasant evening at Lola's - watching bits of the Priesthood session on TV and chatting. Harry went off to play with Tyler and had a great time!
Lola has had a really interesting life! She's lived all over the world, been in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, been married twice, had no children, been secretary to one of the Twelve Apostles, and knows all of them really well!

At 7.30pm Dan drove me, Lucy and Harry back to our's, and Lola followed with the rest of the Walters who were all packed up for the airport.
We said our goodbyes, then Lucy, Harry and I walked back down to Temple Square. We had another look around Deseret Books, and showed Lucy the Tabernacle and view from the top of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.
By that time, Harry was tired out. I will always remember waiting at a pedestrian crossing facing the Conference Centre. Lucy and I were the only ones standing there, with Harry actually lying down on the pavement... the Priesthood Session had just finished and so on the opposite side of the crossing facing us were hundreds of guys in suits! We were definitely going against the flow!
We tried to get on the roof of the Conference Centre, but weren't allowed, so we walked home, where the boys were already back. We all chatted a bit before bed.

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