Original article posted by Greg:

I don’t know why I mention it, really. I suppose the point is that you are missing out on a few cool things happening to me because I can never remember to write them in these little posts.

The other day six brothers and sisters all came up to us. The oldest was probably 10. They surrounded us as we tried to figure out where to go tracting. They pushed the buttons on our bicycle lights and asked questions. “What is this for?” and “What is in your bag?” and “Want to come play?” One of them asked us “Where are you from?” And another one answered “They’re from heaven.” “Are you from heaven?” “Hey, these guys are from heaven.”

We left them there in the street while they waited for their father to finish getting drunk. And I wondered if it was fair of us, and what would happen to them in years to come.

But I wonder that kind of thing a lot.

In other news, a new chapel here in the Hualien district has opened last week. So we had our church meetings there for the first time on Sunday. It is a beautiful building. People all over our area know it and ask us about it. Great feeling inside, too.

I think this band is called TLC. I find I don’t like TLC.

I heard somewhere that goldfish have a memory of four seconds. That would mean that a goldfish’s entire life is whatever he has experienced in the past four seconds. Hey, look… Bubbles.

I don’t know how true that is. I imagine it’s one of those statistics that 78 percent of the population can make up on the spot.

But I got to wondering about the memory span of a human.

Okay, obviously we remember a lot longer than four seconds. But there is an aspect of us that is somewhat forgetful, as well. That is, even though we can remember the fact of the event we forget what it meant to us at the time.

My thought is that the average memory span of a human being (in that sense) is probably around a year for most people. The reason for this is that I can remember just under a year ago I was able to drive around in a car and listen to music. I remember the fact of it. I remember that I thought of it as an enjoyable thing. But I don’t any more. You know? Like I forgot how it was to enjoy it because I haven’t been able to do it for a long time.

Anyway, I think that is probably true for more things than just driving in a car. I imagine it is hard to remember why you liked spending time with the people you spent time with a year ago unless you still do. Or hard to imagine what it would be like to be back at the job you had a year ago when you’ve been doing a different job for a year.

So the trick is to let the unimportant things fade, and keep the important things bright in your memory. Maybe that’s one good purpose of a diary. We meet lots of people here who find real stability and happiness in life, then figure there’s no need to maintain it, and a year or so later they are completely different people. But I completely believe that a maintenance of emotion and belief and thought is possible for an immense amount of time.

Of course, there is the nostalgia eel, who swims up the passages of our personal history like a slippery ribbon-like ghost of goodness past. Then it’s like being there again, re-living it over again. But never quite as potent, nor ever quite the same flavor again.

So that’s my random ‘people are like fish’ theory. I’m not sure how gills fit in, but I’m sure they do somewhere. Of course, it’s just my opinion, I could be wrong.

I continue to get along well with Elder Taylor, who is probably the most laid-back guy I have ever met. Which is good. But we still haven’t had anybody get baptized. Which is bad. Because that’s a big part of why I came to Taiwan.

Yes, I still get the responses posted at the end of my messages, so please contine to post them. The responses, I mean.

Lacking further commentary,
-Elder Hamblin

Orginal comments:

Nickname: squishous
Re: Also we eat flakes floating on the upper surface of existence.
this isn’t really a responce. It is more of a change of topic.

Merry Christmas!! I don’t know if you will get this before the beloved day of presents arrives, but I wish you well all the same. And, I hear the Tiawanese give great fireworks!! take pictures.


P.S. what is the difference between regular Cheer and “good” cheer? I suppose it has something to do with Tide or All or wossname.

Nickname: AnaNg
Re: Also we eat flakes floating on the upper surface of existence.
Are the flakes floating? Are we floating while eating the flakes? Are the flakes soggy? Is there no gravity on the upper surface of existence which makes the flakes float? Why are there flakes in the first place? Where did they come from? Did some random alien spill his morning cereal? Or was the alien not-so-random? You decide…I’m off to eat my mourning flakes.