FAMILIA UNIDA
MISSION PASEO 
OF THE GUATEMALA-EL SALVADOR MISSION, 1972

A complete tour of the Guatemala-El Salvador Mission
June, July, August and September, 1972

INTRODUCTION

In May of 1972, Elders Teel, Cameron, Mundy, Eddo and myself, were assigned to develop a musical show promoting the Family Home Evening program of the church. We had the opportunity of visiting all 29 cities and their individual areas on a 101-day tour performing a total of 78 times. I will attempt to relate a few of the highlights of each area along with a brief description of each city. I welcome any additional information/interesting stories anyone might have concerning this particular period of time and the cities visited. So sit back, relax, and enjoy my own personal biased view from inside La Familia Unida.

Scott Shirley

GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA - JUNE 1, 1972, THURSDAY
GETTING OUR ACT TOGETHER

I bounced into the mission home from Escuintla to meet the other elders. A load of greenies had just arrived. I remembered some of the older missionaries saying to me on my first day, "If I still had 22 months left I'd slit my wrists!" Most of the ones who said those kind of things were the ones everyone else wished they really would. I thought many times about offering razor blades to a few of them myself. The new group of greenies included Elder Don Dodge who would later be my junior companion up in San Pedro.

Guatemala City had a population of just under 700,000, about 45% Indians, 55% Latinos. It is up on the plateau about 75 miles north of the Pacific Ocean. The original capital was set up by Spain in the city of Antigua in 1570, but when an earthquake destroyed the city the "Audiencia" or court of judges was moved to Guatemala City in 1776. The dominant religion was Roman Catholic

Guat City had the coolest temperatures I had experienced during my mission so far. It reminded me of the summers in the Idaho mountains, with the exception of not having many palm trees in Idaho (they just don't grow well in the snow).

A ROOM WITH A VIEW or ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST
We moved into a house directly in the flight path of incoming aircraft by the airport. Flights of 747's had just begun and we would run up on top of the flat roof to watch the monsters gliding in. We were often shaken from deep sleep by the screaming thunder of the giant jets just a few hundred feet above. The best part of the house was HOT SHOWERS! I had forgotten they were even possible.

The five of us were to be a district with Elder Randy Teel as our DL. He was a big Texan that played guitar better than anyone I had ever seen. I had known him since the previous November back in San Salvador. Eddo, from Sepulveda, California, was his junior companion. I had been in the same district with him in Escuintla. Elder Randy Mundy, from Topeka, Kansas, was a great singer/guitar player/drummer, etc. I had been in the same district with him the previous October in San Salvador. Elder John Cameron was the architect of the group. He had received permission from President Glade to organize the group. He was from Lyndhurst, Ohio, and had been a member of "The Young Ambassadors" at BYU. All of us had been in various rock bands and groups which presented a problem: Can five egos that large co-exist for any reasonable amount of time to any degree of harmony? The answer of course was absolutely not, but we gave it a shot anyway and lived to tell about it.

We began practicing our songs, did errands and then went with Teel to interview some baptisms. Mundy threw up in the street. Not a good sign.

REHEARSALS
Elder Cameron's main effort was to teach me how to sing. I had sung in rock bands, but there was a difference between singing and what I had been doing. I enjoyed much more whatever I had been doing.

GUATEMALA CITY, LONELY HEARTS CLUB
JUNE 5, MONDAY

I received word from home that my girlfriend was anxiously engaged in a cause other than myself, though she insisted such was not the case. In my righteous indignation I decided to write her off (before she wrote me off). I announced to the others what I had done and suddenly I noticed them with their heads together. They were all bigger than I and jokingly crowded me into a corner and said, "Elder Shirley, you're stupid." Then holding up a picture I still had of her they added, "Anyone who would write off someone who looks like this when you look like that is stupid." Then they just walked away shaking their heads. At first I did not know what to think, but then I began to wonder. I wrote her another letter as if nothing had happened, she wrote back, and we have now been married for 22 years and have 5 children. Thank goodness for friends who are willing to tell you the truth about yourself.

GUATEMALA CITY, LA FLORIDA
JUNE 6, TUESDAY

While we were practicing at the Stake President's house lightning knocked out the power. We got soaked in the rain and had to take a taxi to Colonia La Florida to do a show. We had our first taste of hecklers when a couple of teens took our guitars and would not give them back. Elder Dodge, a world-class wrestler, convinced them to give the guitars back.

GUATEMALA CITY, EQUIPAJE VIAJE
JUNE 7, WEDNESDAY

We beat the streets trying to find appropriate equipment for the show. It was not clear if we should go electrical or acoustical. There were pros and cons about both. We also could not agree as to what we were to wear. Because we could not agree on materials for matching ties we returned with nothing. Nothing egotistical about that particular group!

GUATEMALA CITY, STRANGE DUDS FOR STRANGER DUDES
JUNE 8, THURSDAY

Three heads can arrive at a decision faster than five, so Mundy, Cameron and I picked out the ties, shoes, and belts. With our little tennis shoes we looked like rejects from Gilligan's Island.

GUATEMALA CITY, CAPILLA BARRIO DOS
JUNE 10, SATURDAY

We were asked to sing at the funeral of Ruth S. Jacob who died of cancer while working among the Guatemalan Indians in the Union Church. An Indian choir sang and did an excellent job. We had tried to put together a song none of us had ever heard before. We had little time to practice and it was evident such was the case. We regretted we could not have sung better for Sister Jacob.

We spent the evening practicing much harder. Funny how a wake-up call can provide impetus for more intense rehearsal.


GUATEMALA CITY, PARQUE ZOOLOGICO
JUNE 11, SUNDAY

We took my street display to the zoo and began teaching about the Book of Mormon. Zoo security guards came and asked us to leave, so we went outside the park and set up by the huge statue of the Indian next to a pond. It was good to be a missionary again.

GUATEMALA CITY, REHEARSAL
JUNE 12, MONDAY

"What if the upcoming performances at the zone conferences don't go well. What if the other missionaries don't buy into supporting the tour? What if the entire project falls flat? What if we keep worrying about it and waste time we could be practicing?"

GUATEMALA CITY, COMBINED GUATEMALA AND XELA ZONE CONFERENCE
JUNE 13, TUESDAY

We felt extremely odd in our double-knit blue pants, matching plaid ties, matching leather belts, and slip-on boat shoes. Gilligan would have been proud.

We were so nervous about what the other missionaries would think we completely blew our guitar duet. President Glade just smiled and asked us to play it again. We needed a good humbling.

I saw Elder Dominguez and had a great visit with him. We have followed each other around ever since the LTM.

ON THE HOMEFRONT

It seemed one thing after another was happening to make me humble in the midst of all the show biz and glitter. I received a letter from my family saying my sister-in-law had just had a baby and that things did not go well. The baby did not survive. They had decided to give the baby my name as his middle name and they hoped I would understand. I excused myself from the rest of the guys and went up onto the roof of our apartment. It was just getting dark yet the last remaining rays of sun outlined the tops of some distant thunderheads. The tears flowed like they had never done before. Then came the peace I had hoped would come, the peace that cannot be explained. Funny how it took something like the death of a child to help me begin to understand a little more why I was there, the meaning of what we were all involved in, and the joy of serving others. The view from that roof was one I needed to see.
SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR, ZONE CONFERENCE
JUNE 15, THURSDAY

We left the mission home at four in the morning and headed for the land southward. We spent the entire trip either sleeping or practicing our songs for the conference. We seemed to blow some of our songs again and it was most discouraging. We wondered if it was all worth it. The trip took about seven hours.

POP'S WAS TOPS

Any visit to San Salvador was not complete without a visit to Pop's Ice cream emporium. My personal favorite was a banana split with three flavors of sherbet covered with caramel and whipped cream. I never could figure out why no one else ever ordered the same thing nor why the employees would giggle and nudge each other while preparing my personal delicacy.

THE LONG AND WINDING ROAD

The Pan American highway from San Salvador to Guatemala City required seven hours of sheer endurance. We left San Salvador at eight in the evening and got home at three in the morning. I understood why the President flew home. We needed seven hours of humbling that can only come from driving seven straight hours through infierno. I wish I hadn't needed so much humbling. On the lighter side, we told jokes all the way back and somewhere along the way ran over a dog. I'm sure he felt much better the next morning that we did.

GUATEMALA CITY, RECORDING STUDIO

A member made arrangements for us to do some recording for a tape at a local recording studio. We were a little in awe about the entire thing. We didn't stay serious for long because Gomm and Blacker were on the other side of the glass windows of the recording booth making faces at us. I didn't realize someone could get their finger that far up their nose. Anyway it helped ease the tension.

GUATEMALA CITY, CUCKOO'S NEST
JUNE 17, SATURDAY

We listened to the tape we made yesterday and it was so absolutely horrible we erased the entire thing. We must have been in denial because we refused to believe we really sounded that bad. How accurate can a recording studio be anyway?

ASSORTED MOVES AND TRANSFERS

Rumorvill reported that Elder Golightly went lightly to another area. Dominguez went from Chimaltenango to Esquintla Quetzal, and my former greenie Elder Williams left Escuintla to work with Elder McDonald in Guatemala City. Reintjes made senior and went to work with Mack in La Florida.

DOES "PR" STAND FOR "PROMOTING THE RIDICULOUS?"

We thought we might be more successful taking pictures of ourselves for public relations than we were in making tapes. At least the pictures didn't make any sound. Bryant Glade took his camera and we took some shots at the Camino Real. We used the pictures to give to newspapers, etc. Bryant did a great job considering the subject matter he had to work with.

GUATEMALA CITY PARK
JUNE 18, SUNDAY

We took our street display to the park to do a little street preaching. There was a small cement wall behind the display and Cameron got the idea of standing on it and teaching from over the top of the display. It worked rather well and we attracted quite a crowd. One guy told me he was not interested because he believed it was Columbus who discovered America, not the Nephites. I tried to explain but the brain was closed for the day. I'm glad Columbus did discover America. Can you imagine every October 12 celebrated as "Nephi Day" or the capital of Ohio being "Laman?" It just wouldn't have been the same.

"FILLING" THE SPIRIT

I went to a dentist who said he would give me a good deal on my teeth. He started poking around and before I knew it he had drilled and filled four teeth, without bothering with the nuisance and additional cost of Novocain I might add. After all, it takes much too long for the numbing to go out of your face anyway.

GUATEMALA CITY, LA FLORIDA
JUNE 21, WEDNESDAY

One of our better shows was in La Florida. We took the bus over there and played our guitars on the bus and sang all the way. We had a captive audience and had a great time entertaining the people on the bus. We got to the show late and had no chance to tune up, so we just jumped right in and started. We had a great time, then went to P&P restaurant to celebrate, compare notes, and make plans.

ASSORTED MISSIONARY FLORIDIANS
Barrus, Dodge, McGaughey, Mack, Reintjes, Shelley DL.

GUATEMALA CITY, GOLD AND GREEN BALL
JUNE 24, SATURDAY

The ward had hired a band for the Gold and Green Ball. Looking at all the equipment they led us to some serious coveting. We just knew if we had the proper equipment we could sound so much better. We asked the band members if we could play during intermission and they said it was all right with them. Keep in mind we had not practiced anything whatsoever that was compatible with electronic equipment, we simply believed we could do it. There was some hesitancy due primarily to wondering what it would do to our reputation if we did not do well, but when decision time came Teel said, "Go."

Teel played the electric guitar and I played keyboard. Mundy played the drums and sang at the same time. Lippencott played electric bass. We played for some time, I played an organ solo and Mundy played a drum solo. It was something like a live jam session that we were fortunate enough to live through. The verdict: Reconsider the use of electric equipment and consider practicing before any public performance.

GUATEMALA CITY, WARD 6
JUNE 27, TUESDAY

We were still not seasoned performers in that we were still reacting to the audience and how things were going in general. In the middle of the performance I broke a guitar string in the middle of a song. There was no opportunity to restring, so we just continued hoping Teel and Eddo could play loud enough to cover, then Teel broke a guitar string. Other than the fact our guitars were all out of tune we lost the spark and the spirit of the show and it went so far south everyone was speaking with a twang. We officially pronounced the show DOA (dead on arrival).

GUATEMALA CITY, FIRST & THIRD WARDS
JUNE 30, FRIDAY
We looked through the curtains before the show and rather than seeing the 136 people in attendance we could only see the chairs that were still empty. We were still somewhat shaken from the last performance in Ward 6. We thought it was going to be so much easier than it was. We were beginning to wonder if the entire project would fold.

We knelt behind the curtain in prayer and asked the Lord to help us put on a good show and that everyone there would be lifted from the performance.

Cameron started the show by sitting on Mundy's lap pretending to be a ventriloquist's dummy. It was so bizarre and hilarious it set a relaxed tone for the entire show. The performance was such a success that people were asking us for autographs after the show.
ASSORTED FIRST AND THIRD WARD WIZARDS
Richard Adams, Anthony, Blakesley, C. Davis. Elder McDonald operated the spotlight for the show.

TOP 10 RECUERDOS FOR JUNE, 1972

10. Pushing a stranger's car three blocks to a service station.
9. Working street displays in the park and at the zoo.
8. Finding my lost contact lens in Mundy's boot.
7. Paying $65 a month for room and board (Do you missionaries really need a clean white shirt EVERYDAY?).
6. Talking to my parents on the phone on my dad's birthday.
5. Trying to decide between electrical or acoustical equipment.
4. Movie of the month: Let It Be.
3. Getting rumbled out of bed by approaching jet aircraft.
2. Playing songs on the bus on our way to do a show.
1. Hot showers.

GUATEMALA CITY, ZONE FIRESIDE
JULY 2, SUNDAY

I found it interesting that missionaries (including myself) were often more critical than the members and people in general. Latins were so loving and accepting of mistakes we made in our grammar while some missionaries took it upon themselves to save everyone else whether or not they wanted such rescuing. We were more nervous about performing for small groups of missionaries than for entire theaters full of strangers. Why was it we were so concerned about what the other missionaries would think of us? I have noticed that with age and maturity comes the ability to not be so concerned about peer perception. Perhaps it is senility. Yes, that must be it. I must be getting older. Now, what was it I was writing about??

In spite of our worries about performing for missionaries the show went very well. We knelt in prayer before the show which calmed our nerves. Elder Dominguez offered the closing prayer which left everyone with a special spirit. We felt good about the show.

GUATEMALA CITY, WARD 2
JULY 4, TUESDAY

The mission had supplied us with $60 to buy some equipment for the show. We tried to get it on line for the show in Ward 2 but did not have time. We were not about to do another performance without proper rehearsal. We had learned not to do that from the Gold and Green Ball on June 24.

In spite of our best intentions we started the show without much enthusiasm and energy and went downhill from there. The best part of the show was when it was over. It was yet another opportunity to learn humility.

CHIMALTENANGO, GUATEMALA
JULY 7, FRIDAY

A little over 20 miles to the west of Guatemala (as the buitres fly) was a small town of under 10,000 called Chimaltenango. Elders Heggerhorst and Maurent were working there. We also saw Dominguez, Roundy, Lemus, Stumpy and Cheney.

We arrived at the theater and set up all our amplifiers and speakers. When it was time to start the show the seats were almost completely empty. Elder Teel got upset with the whole thing and told us to follow him. When a Texan that large gets upset, you had better do what he says. Teel, Mundy, Eddo and I went outside and crossed the street over to a little park in front of the police station that looked like an old castle. We sat on a stone fence and started playing "Jumping Jack Flash." People gathered around as Mundy sang and then shouted an invitation for everyone to follow us to a free concert across the street. We felt like the Pied Piper as we started playing and everyone followed us to the theater. I went out in front of the curtain to play guitar solos while Mundy and Teel went out to gather in more people.

Elders Dominguez and Lemus had persuaded the local Catholics into letting us borrow their PA system. We needed it because the theater was packed. It turned out to be a tremendously successful show. It can be very beneficial to get a Texan all riled up.

GO SOUTH YOUNG MAN
We went back to the nest then grabbed a TICA bus for El Salvador. It was a nice Greyhound-like bus. "TICA" most likely stood for "This Is Costing A lot." After bouncing up and down the long roads the name was changed to "This Is Coming Apart."

We checked into El Salvador at the boarder then on the road again to Santa Ana.

SANTA ANA, EL SALVADOR, ZONE FIRESIDE
JULY 8, SATURDAY
Santa Ana was always one of my favorite places. I finished up my mission there ten months later. It had the coolest temperatures of any place in El Salvador I had the opportunity of working.

It was one of the larger cities in El Salvador with a population of under 100,000. It is located about 80 miles to the southeast of Guatemala City.

Kusch and Wright were the zone leaders and we stayed with them at their place. Cacuango was the district leader. The zone fireside went rather well.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN

Teel and I left the others in Santa Ana the following morning because we wanted to get to San Salvador early and visit some people in our old stomping grounds. We hitched a ride in the back of a pickup and ended up laughing, playing our guitars and singing our way to the capital. We spent the afternoon with the Sanchez family in Santa Lucia. It was great to be back in my first area.

LAYCO CHAPEL, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
JULY 9, SUNDAY
San Salvador was the largest of all the cities in El Salvador. The population was somewhere around 380,000. Keate and Paulson were the ZL's. Other assorted Layco-Psychos consisted of Bowen, Haack, Johnson, Keate, McCracken, and Martinson.

We tried something different at this show that ended up being a trademark of all the rest of our shows. The final number was "I Am A Child of God." Cameron and Mundy went out into the audience and gathered up as many little children that would come and brought them to the stage. We played and sang surrounded by those precious little ones. It is hard to describe the feeling generated by those innocent smiles and loving spirits. The spirit was stronger than it had ever been before. We were congratulated and praised, and to some degree thought the show was a great success. We often tended to judge the success of a show by the number of people in attendance, not realizing that the real power was in the message, not the messengers.

SPEAKING "SPANGLISH"

Each of us had only 730 days or so to learn and be fluent in Spanish. Those who had the opportunity of working day after day in the towns and pueblos learned the language much better. We had spent the previous month singing, playing, and conversing primarily in English and were beginning to lose some confidence in our conversation skills in Spanish. We seldom, if ever, spoke very much Spanish. I found myself envying those with superior skills.
We stayed overnight with the Sanchez family in Santa Lucia. It was great to speak Spanish again.

NORTHERN MIGRATION
JULY 10, MONDAY

We boarder a bus in San Salvador and began the 120-or-so-mile seven-or-so hour trip back to Guatemala City. I sat by Elder Bowen who was taking Cornish's place as First Assistant. There were several others who were on their way north that day for transfers.

PURSE OR SCRIPT - YES, CAR OR VAN - NO

We had interviews with the President and were told we were not going to be provided with a car. We would be going by bus, taxi, whatever we could find. We found that hard to believe and were not happy about it, but in retrospect it was one of the best things that happened to us. We would have missed out on hitching rides with so many nice people, visiting on "chicken busses" with people we otherwise would never have met, talked with others at bus depots and had time to visit with street kids. I'm grateful we were not provided with a car.

Realizing there was no appealing the decision about transportation there was only one thing we could do: Go to the Camino Real for baked Alaska. Now there's true comfort.

JULY 11, TUESDAY
MARATHON DAY

GUATEMALA CITY, ZONE CONFERENCE

The day started off with zone conference. President Glade gave a great talk then Brother Arnold spoke. He was Seminary Coordinator and also Mission Representative for all of Central America and some of South America. The five of us were asked to bear our testimonies at the end of the conference (we did not mention the fact we did not get to use a car).

GUATEMALA CITY, ROTARY WIVES LUNCHEON

After conference we were whisked away to do some numbers at a luncheon for the Rotary Wives. Teel was getting a cold and his voice was not its usual high quality. The purpose was to audition for a performance at the Conservative of Music. I had never been to such a swanky place before. I wondered why a person would need more than one fork to eat a meal.

ANTIGUA, GUATEMALA

We left the "luncheoning ladies" and headed for Antigua. It lies about 15 miles west of Guatemala City with a population somewhere around 17,000. Cheney and Kuehne were working there. They had booked a huge auditorium and we were expecting to be a huge success. The place was almost completely empty for the first show with what few people there were scattered around the auditorium. The attendance was such a disappointment we had a quick meeting of the minds to figure out what to do. The missionaries then roped off specific areas for the second show. All the missionaries that had come for the show scattered themselves throughout the audience to initiate applause and laugh at the appropriate places. We went into the audience to gather children for the closing number and it was a great success. The heroes of the show were the other missionaries, not the five of us.

GUATEMALA CITY, COLONIA CIPRESALES
JULY 12, WEDNESDAY

This was a rather tough neighborhood, or at least it had the reputation of being so. Hardy, Henrie, Hone, and Stapel were working there. We did the show in a school hall and the crowd was tough. One of the rowdies passed gas so loud the entire audience heard it. We did manage to get some good references from the 90 or so people there.

GUATEMALA CITY, COLONIA JOCOTALES
JULY 13, THURSDAY
McDonald and Williams were working this area. We performed in a barn-like place with very few seats. We arrived in a taxi and had a very difficult time tuning up. No one but members were in attendance.

There was an outside balcony on the theater, so we went up there and began to play some songs to attract attention for the show. We used the theater's public address system for additional sound. We managed to attract a few additional people.

McDonald had developed a great lighting system. He had learned a few tricks in his theater training before the mission. The attendance was sparse but the spirit wasn't. We had a great time.

LA PRENSA LIBRE
Our picture came out in the paper and a blurb about what we were doing and where we would be performing. We did not get the coverage we anticipated but it was OK. We did not make the front page, so I cut and pasted the paper into my journal so it looked like we did. I never could figure out why the other guys in the group always accused me of being vain.

GUATEMALA CITY, WARD 5
JULY 14, FRIDAY

We took a taxi out to ward 5 for the show that night. Two of the "Ward Five Fanatics" consisted of Gwilliam and Nielson. They had the stage all decorated with posters of the group on the wall. They had worked very hard to get ready for the show.

We decided not to use our electric equipment and discovered we actually sounded better. We did not have access to mixer boards and the technology that would come years later, nor did we have a sound technician necessary to run the equipment. Simple was better, and believe me, we were simple.

Once again the closing number was crowned by singing "I Am A Chile of God" with the stage filled with children brought up from the audience.

GUATEMALA CITY, COLONIA LA FLORIDA
JULY 15, SATURDAY
Performers are an odd lot indeed. I don't know how many times we arrived late for performances. I wonder if we got an additional adrenaline rush from the challenge of the moment, of improvising. Who knows. Perhaps we were just not as organized as we should have been.

The chapel at La Florida was packed. The missionaries had built a portable stage that was very effective. It was the same stage we used the night before in Ward 5.

Some of the local Floridians were Barrus, Borgquist, Dodge, Gardea, McGaughey, Mack, Reintjes, and Shelley. After the show some hecklers were fooling around with our equipment. One of them took Elder Dodge's pen. Big mistake. Dodge was 2nd in the nation and 4th in the world at 191 lb. wrestling. It was nice to have a bouncer like him around.

A pregnant lady got rather excited at the performance and went into labor after the show was over. Elder Dodge went for an ambulance while Shelley and another elder gave her a blessing. A large crowd had gathered to see what would happen. She was given a blessing that the baby would not come at that time. The bomberos took her to the hospital where the doctor said it would be a miracle if the baby was not born that night. It was indeed a miracle because the baby was born the next morning. Due to complications and the fact the baby was so premature it died shortly after birth. Once again the real heroes were not the ones on stage.

GUATEMALA, QUEZALTENANGO, XELA ZONE
JULY 17, MONDAY
NOSEBLEED HEAVEN

Xela was about 70 miles straight west of Guatemala City. Unfortunately you could not go straight west, rather around, up, over, down, and through mountain passes. Though we were riding on a TICA bus we were nevertheless nauseous from motion sickness by the time we arrived. It was a city of around 50,000 people nestled high in the western highlands of Guatemala.

We did the show for the missionaries, then had a zone volleyball game and some refreshments. We boarded the bus and headed back for Guatemala City. Mundy got some good references from some French tourists on the bus. Tourists we would have missed had we been traveling in a private van.

GUATEMALA CITY, WARD 4

We all felt like we had been dragged through a knot-hole backwards after traveling the roller coaster bus ride to Xela twice the same day, but we still had another performance ahead of us at Ward 4.

Two of Ward 4 Fantastics were Gunnell and Hillery. Their entire district also helped in getting references for the show. Things went well and we got some good references, then home to nest a bit.

GUATEMALA CITY
JULY 19, WEDNESDAY
LEAVING THE NEST FOR GOOD

The day had finally come to leave our "permanent" living quarters. We would now be on the road, sleeping at various apartments of other elders or staying in hotels as we could find them. Goodbye to hot showers and continuous roaring of incoming aircraft and regular meals. Hello to doing our laundry wherever and whenever we could, to irregular meals, sleeping on busses and in depots. Ah, that was the life. Just another day in paradise.

PASEO ITINERARY

The overall plan was to leave Guatemala City and go west through the highlands to Xela, then down to the coast and back to the capital, then swing east around Zacapa and down through the boarder to Santa Ana working our way to San Salvador, then west down along the coast and up through San Vicente. At least that was the plan.

GO WEST YOUNG MEN
SOLOLA, GUATEMALA
JULY 20, SATURDAY

Due primarily to our superior planning we promptly missed the bus to Solola and had to wait for another. We and all our equipment were let out at Los Encuentros in the middle of a rainstorm. Luckily we got a ride into the city arriving too late to get into our performing clothes and had to do the show in our levis.

Solola was a small Indian town nestled on the north shore of Lake Atitlan. It is often featured in travel brochures. It is about 50 miles straight west of Guatemala city.

We performed in an old theater to a very polite audience of primarily Cachiquel and Quiche Indians. I'm not sure how much of our gringo Spanish they could understand but they smiled and seemed to enjoy the show nonetheless. We gathered some good references.

Gomm was there with the mission van. Why we did not ride with him I do not know. We stayed with McQuarrie and Landeen.

PATZUN, GUATEMALA
JULY 21, FRIDAY
We left our equipment in the mission van with Gomm and traveled the 15 miles east to Patzun. It was a small Indian town of less than 3,000 people situated about 30 miles straight west of Guatemala City. The city was typical of Indian culture with narrow unpaved streets, multi-colored miniature houses and even shorter people. At about six feet in height I felt like a giant. The people all dressed alike in red and yellow typical clothes. The Sister Missionaries wore long skirts. The cool temperatures of the highlands reminded me of Idaho in the summer.

Telephones were scarce so we had to use the telegraph to send some messages to the district office. We spent the afternoon sampling something called chuchitos which consisted of some kind of mystery meat wrapped in tortilla dough and fried in oil. We learned to be very serious and sincere about blessing our food. We also learned to drink lots of Coke (something about faith without works being dead, you know).

When it was time for the show to start we had to go outside and play again to drum up an audience. Once again the closing number with all the children on stage was the best part.

We got up the next morning and went to a public shower. Now that was certainly different. I felt like I was back in high school.

LET THE LITTLE ONES COME

Mundy and I were to travel together so we went down to the bus depot to wait for the next ride out. We sat there on the curb of the cobblestone street talking, laughing and joking. We noticed some little Indian children eyeing us a little way off. We smiled and with that assurance we were suddenly surrounded by a group of miniatures. We laughed and joked and played with those precious little people. It was indeed the single-most memorable part of trip for me. When I think back to those days in Indian country I can still see Mundy and myself sitting on the cobblestone streets of Patzun playing and joking with the children. We came from different countries, different cultures, were of different ages, yet the kinship of youth spoke fluently the language of love.

PATZICIA, GUATEMALA
JULY 22, SATURDAY

Patzicia was a small town of less than 3,000 people about 7 miles southwest of Patzun and 25 miles to the west of Guatemala City.

We got off in the middle of the town and began walking down the road toward the chapel. Fields on both sides of the road were filled with towering sugar cane plants. We were shocked to see a clearing in the middle of some corn fields the white spire of one of the newest and most modern chapels in the country. It was absolutely gorgeous and highly revered by the members. Nothing like it existed in the entire city. In back of the chapel was a basketball court where some Indian girls were playing basketball in their long typical skirts and braided hair. We leaned over the fence and sampled some sugar cane which we chewed on for hours, sucking the sweet juice and spitting out the woody pulp. What a life.

We walked back to the main plaza in the center of town and started playing our guitars and singing. Almost instantly we were surrounded with a crowd of curious onlookers. We invited them to the show and then sang as we walked the half-mile back to the chapel followed by a small crowd of people. The show seemed to lack spark which forced us to work harder. Sometimes working harder is not as good as working smarter. We could have done better but got some good references anyway.

QUEEN OF DENIAL

There was a city celebration that day, so Salazar talked an drunk member of the city committee into letting us perform at the coronation of the Queen of the city. A local radio station was covering the big event and the crowd was enormous. The stage was set up outside. We played a few songs as loud as we could but I was sure they could only hear us three-fourths of the way back.

When we finished playing, the candidates for Queen came parading across the stage in front of us. Suddenly fireworks went off and the Queen herself entered the stage in a cloud of smoke. Everyone cheered as the bombs exploded. I could hear Bert Parks singing in my mind, "Here she comes, Miss Patzicia."

HARD DAYS NIGHT, COLD NIGHT'S DAZE

We spent the night sleeping in the kitchen in the chapel on the floor. It was so cold in the night that we had to keep getting up to turn on the gas stove to prevent hypothermia. I never imagined anywhere in Central America could be so freezing cold.

PATZICIA, GUATEMALA
JULY 23, SUNDAY

Cameron and Eddo were so uncomfortable sleeping on the cement floor that they went into the chapel and curled up on the benches. When Elder Salazar got there early he quickly got them up and out before the members came in. He explained that the chapel was held in such high regard by the members that it would be a great disgrace for anyone to be seen sleeping in there. We figured we would not have any problem because we certainly hadn't been doing any "sleeping."

When it was time for Priesthood Meeting to start no one was at the piano, so I sat down and started with some preliminary music. Most of those little places had no members who could play. I guess my piano teacher "Mean Old Mrs. Mortensen" was right when she forced me to learn all those hymns I hated so much. Darn her anyway.

A SPRINKLE IN TIME

In order to get something to eat we had to do a little traveling, so we walked in the rain over to the bus stop and hitched a ride in the back of a Volkswagen pickup truck. Did I mention it was raining? Did I mention we were in the back of a VW pickup? We got so soaking wet we were freezing to death. Eddo tried to cover himself with a red plastic bag and started clowning around sticking his head above the cab of the pickup and over the sides of the truck to the point we thought he was going to fall out. The drivers of the truck must have thought we had lost our minds. At least we weren't the ones hauling around a truckload of laughing, freezing, soaking wet gringos.

We finally got to the restaurant and warmed up with some good food. The clouds hung down around the mountains like huge grey curtains. It was beautiful.

We got back in time for Sacrament meeting, then I found a roll-away bed on the stage behind the curtains and slept like a rock for three hours before someone found me. Sisters Magyar and Draper took pity on us and prepared us a tuna casserole. I had never been fond of tuna casserole in my pre-mission days, but I gladly consumed every ounce of that delicious dish. My compliments to the chef-ettes.

AT PEACE ON THE PISO

Contrary to popular belief it is possible for a floor to become soft if one is sufficiently exhausted.

PATZICIA, GUATEMALA
JULY 24, MONDAY
PIONEER'S PROGRESS
The first of the Shirley's arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in the 1850's and promptly boiled some water for a hot bath. There I was, some 120 years later, in the mountains of Guatemala, boiling water on the stove for a hot bath. Some things never change.

TECPAN, GUATEMALA

Elder Salazar guided Mundy, Cameron and myself to Katok, the fancy roadside inn at Tecpan. Mundy and Eddo wanted to take their chances hitching, so we crowded onto a chicken bus with all our speakers and equipment and headed for El Quiche. We picked up Buttars and Sanders who were going there to help work the show. Buttars and I had a great time conversing about Idaho, our favorite native state.

EL QUICHE, GUATEMALA

We traveled up one hill and down another to the little town of El Quiche 30 miles to the northwest of Patzicia and 50 miles west-northwest of Guatemala City. It had a population of somewhere around 7,000 people. Cammack and Kellett were two of the missionaries working there at the time.

THE NIGHT THE LIGHTS WENT OUT IN QUICHE

The local bomberos were the sponsors of the show. We were scheduled to perform at a local theater. The firemen gave us a ride to the show house in the fire truck with the red lights flashing all the way. We started the show and the power promptly went off. We had the bomberos drive their fire truck up to the front door and shine the lights up onto the stage. We used their hand-held loud speaker as a sound system. Fortunately the power came back on after we had suffered through only two songs and we were able to complete the show in a more appropriate fashion. It certainly gave us an opportunity to improvise under adverse conditions.

PULGUITA LINDA

We spent the night in a little pension getting well acquainted with the "Pulga" family. They weren't much for conversation but had us for dinner nonetheless.

TOTONICAPAN, GUATEMALA
JULY 25, TUESDAY

"Toto was only about 20 miles southwest of El Quiche so we decided to take a taxi. It ended up costing us $10 which was much more than the bus toke would have been. The city had a population of somewhere around 8,000 and was situated about 60 miles west-northwest of Guatemala City.

A REAL CLIFFHANGER

On our way to Toto we were bouncing up and down a dirt road on the edge of a deep canyon when we came to a sharp turn around a corner and came face-to-face with a jeep coming the other way. There was nowhere to go for us because the drop off was to our right and he was in the lane closest to the mountain. Our driver hit the skids and we slid toward the edge of the cliff coming to a stop a few inches from going over. We nearly had to change our name from "La Familia Unida" to "La Familia Partida."

We continued driving into a rainstorm that continued throughout the night. We arrived at Elder Adamson's house. Marsh, Reynoso, and Tueller were also in Toto-ville. Adamson cooked us some chicken and dumplings. He even had pie for desert. Such hospitality was unparalleled. As the rain drizzled outside the warm chicken and dumplings sizzled inside of us. How delicious.

TEATRO MARAVILLOSO

The theater in which we were to play was absolutely gorgeous. It was a Shakespeare-type design being round with several layers of balconies up above. I expected to see John Wilkes Booth come jumping from one of the box seats just above the stage.

Attendance was low again so we went outside the theater and started playing to attract a larger crowd. Some street punks tried to give us a bad time but it didn't bother us much. The show went very well and we walked in the rain back to the pension. When we got there the owners of the boarding house had given our beds away but arranged for some others.

WHAT CONDITION OUR CONDITION WAS IN

Up to this point in time we had worked primarily out of Guatemala City. Now we were on the road and things were a little different. The weather was cold and we were not accustomed to the food. We were often able to eat only one meal each day along with the few snacks we could find along the way. We were not used to sleeping in a different place each night, not to mention spending nights on the floor. It was getting harder each time to get excited about the show. It was also getting more difficult to get along with one another. We had expected a little more glamour. What we were finding was work and lots of it. Some of the other missionaries told us they wished they were in the show instead of us. We were finding it easier each day to agree.

TOTONICAPAN, GUATEMALA, STATE OF CONFUSION
JULY 26, WEDNESDAY

We thought the night before that we had told each other when we were going to leave in the morning, but Teel and Eddo left early without telling us. It turned out they thought we had already gone without telling them but we had told them nothing because we were still there. They told each other what they thought about us for apparently leaving early and we told each other what we thought of them for really leaving early and Sisters Marsh and Tueller told us to knock it off and they would fix us eggs and pancakes. We told them we thought that would be fine. That's what we told them, I think.

The sisters then guided us to Cuatro Caminos where we waited for a bus in a heavy rainstorm, then off to Momos.

MOMOSTENANGO, GUATEMALA
JULY 26, WEDNESDAY

Momos was only about 10 miles in a straight line to the northwest of Toto but it was impossible to go in a straight line from one to another. Much more distance was covered going up, down, over and around all the mountains. Momostenango was about 70 miles northwest of Guatemala City and had a population of about 3,000 or so.

SUGAR, SPICE, AND THE SALT OF THE EARTH

We arrived too late in Momos to see the typical dancers scheduled to perform that day at some type of celebration. Everyone was a little upset about the miscommunication that morning, so Mundy tried to fix things by preparing everyone some hot chocolate. He accidentally grabbed the container of salt instead of sugar. It was not until we tried to drink it that the mistake was discovered. Sometimes even the best of intentions backfire.

MISSIONARY WEDDING BLANKETS?

No missionary recuerdo collection was complete without a wedding blanket from Momostenango. They were specially made blankets with Quetzal birds woven around the edges and the words "Los (insert your family name here) por las eternidades." I suppose it focused attention on where the missionaries intended at some future time to be married. What I found disconcerting was me actually buying something for my marriage! I found it very useful later in life. It has been successfully taking up space under the bed in the spare bedroom in my house for the past 25 years. Something has to go under there.

The show went rather well but was really beginning to be a drag. We were in need of some kind of spark.

CUATRO CAMINOS, GUATEMALA
JULY 27, THURSDAY

Cuatro Caminos was basically a transportation hub where four major roads met. We waited to there for the next bus to from Momos to Huehue. There were a few Indians there also and suddenly Mundy and Eddo decided to have some fun. There was a rather steep grass embankment going down from the edge of the road. They pretended they were in a movie and began to have a rather lame argument. Mundy then pushed him and Eddo rolled and rolled and rolled down the hill to the bottom, much to the amusement of the spectators. Eddo got up speaking as if he were a super hero and narrated what he was doing as he struggled to the top of the hill where Mundy stood like Superman. Just as Eddo got there, Mundy pretended to punch him. Eddo sprawled backward and rolled once again all the way to the bottom of the hill, only to return in much the same fashion only to, once again, be struck by a hay-maker, sending him back to the bottom of the hill. The Indians laughed, applauded and cheered the struggling Eddo on. It was some of the best entertainment we had seen on the tour. It is no wonder Eddo ended up in the motion picture business after his mission.

HUEHUETENANGO, GUATEMALA
JULY 27, THURSDAY

Huehue was a small town of around 11,000 in population about 20 miles to the north of Momostenango. It was about 80 miles northwest of Guatemala City and 40 miles from the Mexican boarder. It was about 35 miles north of Quezaltenango. There were some ruins there, but we were unable to find time enough to go visiting. Jones and Symmes were to of the way-out Huehue's.

Our first performance was at a high school and it was very successful. We did an evening performance that was not that well attended. We were competing with a popular movie at another theater.

HUEHUETENANGO
JULY 28, FRIDAY
We got up early to take an ice-cold shower at the Branch President's house. What a wonderful way to start a day. It must have been a combination of strange food and hypothermia for I got stomach cramps and so much internal gas I thought I was going to explode. By the time we dropped a few hundred feet in elevation to Xela bouncing along on a bus I felt much better. I guess atmospheric pressure does have its merits.

QUEZALTENANGO A.K.A. XELA, GUATEMALA
JULY 28, FRIDAY

Xela had a population of about 50,000 making it one of the larger cities in Guatemala. It was 70 miles due west of Guatemala City.
XELA PREP SCHOOLS

We spent the afternoon performing at two all girls schools and two all boys schools. The girls were rather awe stricken with Teel and started screaming when he began singing. He didn't do much for the boys.

MILITARY MADNESS

We did another show for the army generals and recruits and a military base. When we finished our first song everyone waited until the generals started applauding before they would begin. After the show we were invited to the officer's bar. They found it amusing we would only have soft drinks. They had a ping pong table and we played a few games. I loved ping pong and was rather proficient, but I also learned that when playing against generals and other officers it was prudent to know when to lose.

IT'S A GAS, GAS, GAS

It's strange how things happen in patterns. On the way to the theater in Xela the van we were riding in ran out of gas. The show was not one of our best and we seemed to run out of gas on stage even though one of the songs we sang was "Jumping Jack Flash" which has the line "it's a gas, gas, gas." After the show the van that was taking us home ran out of gas. We stayed the night at District President Mesaia's house drinking - you guessed it - gaseosas.

QUEZALTENANGO A.K.A. XELA, GUATEMALA
JULY 29, SATURDAY

Not as many people came to the show as did the previous night, though the show went smoothly and we were able to get some promising references for the missionaries to follow up on.

We stayed once again at the stake president's house which was still under construction. We were provided with great beds and had candles for lights because the house was still not wired. Very homey.

QUEZALTENANGO A.K.A. XELA, GUATEMALA
JULY 30, SUNDAY

We went over to the ZL's to shower for the first time in over two days. Zollinger and Purdy were the ZL's. We attended church then got a ride with the branch president's brother to El Quiche for another show.

EL QUICHE, GUATEMALA, SHOW II
JULY 30, SUNDAY

Kellett and Cammack were working the city. They had done a great job arranging the hall for the performance. The last time we were there the lights went out on the entire show. This time I forgot my contact lenses as well as my glasses and had to do the entire show guessing where I was. The show went very smoothly and was one of our best. Too bad I missed seeing it.

We headed back for Xela, got into our beds at the branch president's house, blew out our candles and hit the sack.

OUTSKIRTS OF XELA, GUATEMALA
JULY 31, MONDAY

As our bus was leaving Xela we were suddenly stopped by a roadblock. Everyone on the bus was ordered off by military soldiers with rather imposing weapons. We were lined up and had to put our arms up leaning against the bus while we were searched. It seemed someone had escaped from the local prison so every departing bus was suspect.

SAN MARCOS - SAN PEDRO, GUATEMALA
JULY 31, MONDAY

The twin cities of San Marcos/San Pedro were up in the nose-bleed part of the mission at an elevation of 7289 feet above sea level. It was 20 miles west of Xela and only 25 miles from the Mexican boarder. If you could have seen in a straight line to the east you would have seen Xela, Solola, Chimaltenango and Guatemala City, one behind another with Guat City 90 miles to the east. The population of San Marcos was about 5,000 people.
The two cities were very picturesque. Practically every road was paved with cobblestones. San Marcos was famous for its San Marcos Lion.

We arrived in the twin cities and the bus dropped us off at the home of Gonzales, Smith, Rigby and Akin. We ate supper with them then headed out in the rain for the theater. The show went well and afterwards a policeman was giving Rigby a bad time. He wanted to see our license to perform. Teel told him we didn't need one. We figured he was upset because he did not get a free ticket to see the show.

We stayed that night in a small hotel. I worked in San Pedro later in my mission and never had any difficulty sleeping there at night. The cold temperatures reminded me so much of my native Idaho.

COATEPEQUE, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 1, TUESDAY

By the time we had traveled from San Marcos/San Pedro at 7289 feet above sea level to Xela and down to Coatepeque on the coast my ears refused to adjust to the elevation change and were killing me.

Coatepeque was about 25 miles southwest of Xela, 25 miles from the coast, and 20 miles from the Mexican boarder. It was 90 miles straight west of Guatemala City and had a population of about 15,000. We were greeted at the city limits by huge clouds and buckets of rain.

When the rain stopped we went out to the theater by the railroad tracks to set up for the performance. The local fire department were our sponsors and the place was absolutely packed with people but we only managed to get 30 references or so. There were member-kids there wearing Familia Unida T-shirts. I bought a few of them and still use them today, that is every time I paint the house.

RETALHULEU, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 2, WEDNESDAY

We caught a bus for Reu and traveled the 20 miles to the southeast of Coatepeque. The City was 30 miles south of Xela and 80 miles west-southwest of Guatemala City. The population was somewhere around 18,000. The small coastal town reminded me so much of Escuintla where I had worked earlier. Both Mundy and Cameron had worked in Reu before so they left to go visit people.
I went with Elder Jenks to do some advertising for the show. He had the idea of walking around playing a tape of our songs. We quickly found out that was not very effective. We went back to the house and suddenly a huge rainstorm hit. I wondered if that was all it did in Reu was rain.

We played in the Rex Theater. Not too many people were there but we did manage to get a few references. We then took a taxi to the church and it was packed for the performance. There were a lot of members there but they needed to know about the family home evening program also. We had a great time.

We then celebrated by hitching a ride to the movies to relax a little.

MAZATENANGO, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 3, THURSDAY

After breakfast and lunch in Reu we grabbed a chicken bus for Mazat. It was about 10 miles east of Reu and 70 miles west of Guatemala City. It had a population of somewhere around 20,000. Cuff and Nye were the seniors working there. Gomm and Mahoney came by in the mission van to deliver mail. It was good to hear from home.

We performed in a small theater inside a radio station owned by a member. Cameron and Eddo had put on a show in Mazat several months earlier that did not go very well. Many members had the idea that it was just another singing missionary thing. We were determined to redeem ourselves.

The entire show was broadcast live on the radio. Everything went rather well with the exception of running out of pencils necessary for writing down references.

GUATEMALA CITY PREP SCHOOL, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 4, FRIDAY

We got up early and traveled the 70 miles to Guat City. We went straight to the Biltmore for some first class grub, a haircut, shave, etc. We then took the mission van out to the school where President Glade's son was going to school. We were somewhat nervous about it until Cameron and Mundy started hamming it up on the stage and got everyone laughing. Things went much smoother after that. The show went well except for the fact we were not used to seeing young ladies in hot pants and mini skirts. We found that a little distracting to say the least.

We played a little basketball with the kids then grabbed some fried chicken for supper.

Got up early, grabbed a bus and road over 70 miles to Guatemala City. Went to the Biltmore and had Chef Salads. Haircut, shave and facial massage. Great except for the popping of my pimples. Teel and I went to the P&P to eat french fries, then got a van out to President Glade's son's school.

COLONIA SANTA LUCIA COTZMALGUAPA, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA

We arrived at the theater just before it was supposed to start. Both the balcony and the main floor seating area was packed. It seated somewhere around a thousand and many people were standing. The show went smoothly and we had a great time performing.

Elder Lemus delivered some mail to us which included a tape from my girlfriend. I always did like Elder Lumus.

GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 5, SATURDAY

We camped out with some members in Guat City. I learned never to be surprised about what I might see. In a tub of water by the shower where the clothes were washed were live fish swimming around in the wash water. I'm still not sure what that was all about.

ESCUINTLA, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 5, SATURDAY

We got a bus to Escuintla which was about 30 miles southwest of Guatemala City. It was a coastal town of about 30,000 people about 25 miles from the Coast. I had worked there prior to being in the show. It was good to be back home.

We had lunch at La Sarita restaurant, then off to visit members and old investigators. We had planned a quick trip to the beach but thought it would be better if we didn't, so we just lounged around listening to tapes until the performance.

COMEDY OF ERRORS

The theater was large and looked even bigger with so many empty seats. The electricity kept going off during the show. My guitar cord broke and we decided to put Eddo's cord on my guitar and he faked it for the rest of the show. I stepped on Teel's guitar cord and pulled it out. Some kind of strange bug lit on my face while I was playing a song and would not get off. I finally got it to fly away when a moth landed on the back of my neck. The audience was noisy. I couldn't blame them, I wondered what strange insects were landing on them also.

UNDESIGNATED DRIVER

After the show we got a taxi back to Guatemala City and soon discovered the driver was drunk. The good part of the trip was he did get us home safely, the better part was that he was so tipsy he didn't charge us much. We spent the night in a small hotel.

VILLA NUEVA, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 7, MONDAY

We got to take the mission van to Villa Nueva which made the trip much easier. The mission staff were asked to drive and were not too happy about it because they had just climbed Pacaya Volcano and were still exhausted. They were good sports anyway.


The performance at Villa Nueva went very well. At the end when we had little kids sitting all around us as we sang "I Am A Child of God" the little girl sitting next to Teel started turning the knobs on his guitar string. Everyone laughed.

THE GRASS WAS ALWAYS GREENER SOMEWHERE ELSE

Several of the missionaries wished they were in our singing group. We were quickly growing tired of the show. Mundy talked about going into the Indian program. Cameron wanted the public relations job. Eddo wanted a greenie in his own area. Rumor had it that Teel was going into the office as 2nd assistant. I didn't really care, I just wanted to do something different after the show had completed its run.

As a rule, man's a fool.
When it's hot he wants it cool.
When it's cool he wants it hot.
Always wanting what it's not,
Never wanting what he's got.

Author unknown.

ZACAPA, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 10, THURSDAY

We had something to eat in the P&P and then hopped a mini bus for Zacapa some 70 miles east-northeast of Guatemala City and 80 miles from the Gulf of Honduras. The population was somewhere around 11,000. We went down out of the mountains and followed the river at the foot of the Sierra De Las Minas mountain range. It was a long horrible trip and I was sick when we got there.

The theater in Zacapa was outdoors. It was a round theater with a cement stage nearly surrounded by a pool of water about 12 feet wide between the performers and the audience. It was as if an orchestra pit had been flooded with water.

RAINDANCE

We hadn't worried about being rained out because it almost never rained in Zacapa. We got ready to start and the rain that never fell in Zacapa began to fall. We went into a small backstage area and Elder McDonald led us in a special prayer that the rain might stop. We waited 10 minutes and sure enough the rain ceased. We hurried out, set up, began playing, and the rain started again. We hurried back inside again and amused ourselves playing songs for some of the member kids. The rain did not stop, but we did. It ended up being our only no-show.

SPOOKY STORIES

We found a giant moth with about an eight-inch wing span. It looked rather spooky which seemed to intrigue Elder Teel. He loved to tell stories and started telling all kinds of evil-spirit type accounts he had heard. Some of the other missionaries we were with joined in, some in fun, some fully believing the absurd, the bizarre and the strange. Though it was meant to tease and amuse I noticed there were some lights left on that night.

CHIQUIMULA, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 11, FRIDAY

We had breakfast, then jammed into a mini bus and headed down the winding road for Chiquimula some 15 miles straight south of Zacapa. It was about 60 miles east-northeast of Guatemala City with a population of around 15,000.

Eddo and I hiked up the mountain to the west and had a wonderful view of the area and the entire pueblo. It was a picturesque little town but much more arid than what I was accustomed to. It was more like desert Mexico than the typical jungles of Guatemala and El Salvador. Various varieties of cactus struggled for life in the arid climate. There were also strange looking trees with flat tops. I never knew what they were called.

The advertising had been excellent but nevertheless few people were in attendance. We went to the park and played some songs to attract more people, but still had very little luck. Another band was playing in the park so Mundy asked them if he could play a drum solo. They thought that would be fine and Mundy went to work. When a crowd came to see what the crazy Gringo was doing we invited them to the show and filled many more seats.

The timing of the show was off but it got worse as we went along. Elder McDonald was running the lights for the show and very tactfully told us the show stunk. We agreed. We hadn't had a real good performance since we played back in Cotz.

"GUATEMALA, WE HAVE A PROBLEM....
AUGUST 12, SATURDAY

We boarded a bus and blasted off for Guat City, then within about an hour of the city limits the bus broke down and we were stranded. We changed busses and thought everything would be fine when the second bus blew a fan belt and we were stranded again. We were getting anxious because we were supposed to play at Ward 6. Finally a member came by, spotted us and took us right to the house where we were to stay. We had time to eat, then off to the show.

WARD SIX, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 12, SATURDAY

We were about as discouraged as we had ever been on the tour. We were wondering if it were possible to have an above average show. We were in for a surprise at Ward 6 because the show was an overwhelming success. Things went so well we actually thought someone else was performing. We learned that we simply could not do a good performance every time we wanted. Without the Lord's help we had no show, and we knew it.

JALAPA, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 14, MONDAY
EDDO'S BIRTHDAY

We spent the morning in Guat City celebrating Eddo's birthday and doing some errands, then took a taxi to Jalapa for #30 and promptly had a flat tire on the way. Jalapa was 35 miles straight east of Guat City and had a population of around 12,000.
The show went very smoothly. The rain did not start until after the show had begun.

The Elders in Jalapa were most accommodating. Not only had Call and Evans worked hard for a successful show, they even moved out of their beds so we could have a good night's sleep. We certainly did not deserve such consideration.

JUTIAPA, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 15, TUESDAY

Teel and Cameron were not ready to go when we were so we left them there and headed for Jutiapa some 25 miles to the south. It was about 50 miles southeast of Guat City with a population of around 7,000.

At the edge of town was a large hill with a huge cross on top. Eddo and I liked to hike, so we made our way to the summit and had a great view of the little town and the surrounding landscape. We were enjoying ourselves rolling large rocks down the sides when the guy who was paid to guard the hill told us we should think of doing something else. We thought that was a good idea.

We played in a small hall and the sound was very good. We had a special prayer and dedicated the performance to the Lord. Everything went very well. Our stage presence was good and our timing was finally clicking the way it was designed. The show was really fun to do.

RADIO SHOW, JUTIAPA, GUATEMALA
AUGUST 15, TUESDAY

Later that afternoon the city was having a celebration of some sort. There was a marathon radio broadcast being made from the city park. Andelin and Lee had arranged for us to be on the broadcast. We did a live 15-minute show in front of several hundred people in the park. Everything went very well. I think the marathon announcer was glad to have a break.

RUN FOR THE BOARDER
AUGUST 16, WEDNESDAY


We got out of bed in Jutiapa, had breakfast and then headed for the boarder about 20 miles south. The bus took us half-way there then we had to wait for another. We thumbed a hitch that would take three of us and all the equipment, so Eddo and I stayed to thumb some more. We got a ride in a sports car that zoomed right along but left us still short of the boarder. A TICA bus came along but wanted more than we were willing to pay, so we ended up getting a chicken bus to the boarder. It took 45 minutes to check out of Guatemala and into El Salvador.

AHUCHAPAN, El SALVADOR
AUGUST 16, WEDNESDAY

We traveled the remaining 10 miles to Ahuchapan, a city of about 18,000 people some 65 miles southeast of Guatemala City and about 50 miles northwest of San Salvador. We had forgotten how much more street dross there was in El Salvador. Guatemala had been rather tame compared to what we were hearing in El Salvador. Nonetheless I felt comfortable in Guanacolandia. Something about it seemed like home.

Eddo and I got off in town and saw a marching band coming up the road. Eddo said he thought it would be funny if the band was promoting our show. When the band came by some girls in front were holding a banner announcing our show. Blake, Davis, Matheson and Maurent had done a wonderful job of promoting the show.

We left our bags at the theater then looked for a place to eat. The other elders had sent a car back to find us, but we weren't lost, we knew where we were all the time.

The show went smoothly and the references seemed promising. The charging of ticket prices always seemed to keep attendance lower.

CHALCHUAPA, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 17, THURSDAY

The morning paper had our picture and a small write-up about the show. I cut out the picture and pasted it into my journal so that it looked like it was on the front page. It wasn't. Did I mention the other guys kept accusing me of being vain?

Eddo and I grabbed a bus and bounced the 12 miles east-northeast from Ahuachapan to Chalchuapa, a town of about 20,000 or so people 10 miles west of Santa Ana and 35 miles northwest of San Salvador. A member drove us to where the Elders were staying. We quickly grabbed our cameras and went to see the ruins of Tazumal. It was fun climbing all over them and imagining what life would have been like so many centuries earlier.

Elder Averal got out his guitar and we had a great jam session. He and Teel both made me look like I had never played guitar before. We had a great time playing and singing. I learned much more about the guitar and even more about myself.

We played at the Lions Club and the show went very well. Elder Kilgore was the bouncer and had to bounce a few rowdies out the door. I found it rather ironic that someone with that particular last name would be the bouncer. It was obvious they didn't want any trouble and that they had picked the right person to keep things in order.


CHALCHUAPA, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 18, FRIDAY
SNEAKING OUT

The lady of the house we were staying with said she was going to San Salvador and would be able to take everyone and all our equipment except for two of us. Eddo and I decided to have some fun and sneak out early so that we would not have to decide who would have to hitch and who would get the "cushy" ride.

We stuffed blankets in our beds to make it look like we were still in bed, then just as we were almost outside Mundy started talking in his sleep and nearly woke up. We froze in our tracks and waited until he had finished his soliloquy the slipped out the door.

We managed to hitch a good ride and traveled the 50 or so miles to San Salvador. The population of the city was somewhere above 350,000. We got there in time to have breakfast at the ZL's, then when Teel, Mundy and Cameron got there we went bowling, shot pool and then out to McDonald's for burgers. Sounds like a tough life, verdad?

COLONIA SOYAPONGO, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 18, FRIDAY

It was great to see some of my old friends from Santa Lucia at the show. I also saw Elder Paul Nielson, one of my old senior comps. He was the DL and was worried about the show being well-attended. His concerns were all for naught because the applause was more enthusiastic that we had been accustomed to. They made us do our comedy number twice. Up to this point we had never had any curtain calls. Does that reveal more about the audiences or the quality of our performance? I wonder.

COLONIA SANTA ANITA, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 19, SATURDAY

The Elders from the Santa Anita area wanted us there early to do some promotional activities so we worked splits with them to cover more territory. Later we stopped over to leave the equipment at the theater but it was locked. We had to huddle under a shelter to keep out of the rain.

PARQUE SAN SALVADOR, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 19, SATURDAY

The elders had arranged for us to do a short performance in the park where we used to do street displays when I first started the mission. I had a hard time keeping on pitch so Cameron sang right in my ear. The result was I couldn't hear myself to see if I was on pitch. It was not one of our greatest performances. I worked splits with the Santa Anita Elders after the show. They were conducting a special fast.

IBERIA THEATER, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 19, SATURDAY

We had excellent facilities for the show but did not fare as well with the weather. Do to rain not many people were there. We also used some new electrical equipment we were not familiar with. In spite of all that the show went rather well and we got some good references.

LAGO DE COATEPEQUE HOTEL, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 20, SUNDAY

The ZL's got a call from the guy who owned the hotel at Lago Coatepeque wanting us to perform even though it was Sunday. He said he could guarantee two- to three-hundred people, so the decision was made to go. Big mistake.

A driver was sent from the hotel for our convenience. The hotel was very posh. I did not feel comfortable. There were young ladies in bikinis everywhere.

We were fed a three-course meal. I was given a hot bowl of crab soup. I had never eaten crab soup before. It was not one of the more common dishes in southeast Idaho. Anything prepared with potatoes was just fine with me. I discovered a complete crab in the bottom of the bowl. One of the other guys was happy to take it off my hands. We were both happy until the waiter came by and refilled my bowl with more little crab bodies. I was not impressed with his kind service.
When the time came for performing we went backstage for a prayer. Kusch and Wright, the ZL's from Santa Ana were there along with Averal and Lloyd to help get references. As we were performing everyone just ignored us and kept eating, so we left the stage and moved over by the tables. The wine at the tables was beginning to take effect on the customers. One guy that looked just like Shemp on the Three Stooges kept coming up to us during our performance giving us a hard time. Elder Lloyd convinced him his conduct was not appropriate and ushered him away. Things got increasingly worse until there was no applause whatsoever.

Kusch really felt bad about the whole thing but it was not his fault. We decided to try and salvage things by going from table to table doing individual numbers for selected customers, that is those who appeared interested. We even got Averal into the act talking him into displaying some of his superior guitar playing abilities. We still did not realize the show had gone so far south we were somewhere in Antarctica. The audience was just as cold.

The owner of the hotel then asked us to go to the other side of the hotel and do another show. Our masochistic tendencies knew no limits. We set up and began playing but only about 20 people or so were in attendance. We got half-way through the performance when a big band back on the other side of the plaza started playing loudly, drowning us completely out. Our small audience jumped up and started dancing. It finally realized that particular "dog was not going to hunt." We packed everything up and called it a very bad day. The guy who booked us gave us all kinds of free ice-cream, etc., and even said we could come back anytime and stay for free. I wonder if he will still make it good after 25 years.

It was the second week in a row I had not been able to go to church. Strange how a missionary could feel inactive.

TEATRO CAESS, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 21, MONDAY

The theater we played in was the fanciest and most elaborate we had played in on the entire tour. The show went very well in spite of the fact Teel broke another guitar string in the middle of the show. We had to make the best of it and continue, trying to quickly tune the remaining strings during the applause between songs.

I was able to spend some time with Elder Baria, one of my buddies from the LTM. It intrigued me that his Texan accent was reflected in his Spanish as well as in English. We had a great time reminiscing about the past.

CHANNEL 2 TELEVISION STUDIO, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 22, TUESDAY

The local elders had arranged for us to go the TV studio and do some taping for an upcoming show of "Buscando Estrellas" which was one of the top shows on the two channels serving El Salvador at the time. It was somewhat like the "Star Search" format used by Ed McMahon years later.

I was somewhat intimidated by all the cords, cameras, lights, etc. We taped the songs "Primera Cosa Bella" as well as "Jumping Jack Flash" and "Impossible Dream." It was much more work than I had imagined. The lights kept reflecting off the scratches in my contact lenses.

ZACATECOLUCA, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 22, TUESDAY

We left the recording studio in time to catch a bus for Zacate some 30 miles southeast of San Salvador and some 15 miles from the ocean. The population was somewhere around 20,000. We were greeted by a rainstorm. How unusual.

In spite of the rain the place was packed. We had a very successful show and the local Elders had done a fantastic job promoting. We spent the night with them and once again got into telling spooky stories. There was always someone who thought it was hilarious. Most everyone else didn't.

DEDICATION MONTH

The month of August was "dedication month" but we never would have known it. We had set goals and failed to attain any of them. Perhaps the change of routine had something to do with it, who knows.

SAN VICENTE, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 23, WEDNESDAY

We arrived at the train station in Zacate too late to catch a train for San Vicente so we had to take the bus some 15 miles north to San Vicente on the other side of a volcano. The weather was so incredibly hot we got up on top of the chicken bus with the luggage on the roof rack and rode the rest of the way to San Vicente. It was by far our most memorable ride so far. We had a fantastic view of the countryside as well as a bit of cool air. The only down-side of the ride on top was the fact we all got sunburned.

San Vicente was about 30 miles east of San Salvador with a population of around 20,000. Only eight members were in the entire town. I had heard rumors the missionaries had been invited to leave sometime before and now the city was being re-opened.

We performed at the big show house in the center of town. We were surprised at the large turnout. The show was a big success. We visited with Elder Martinson & Co. It was great to see him again.

Our mail finally caught up with us again. It was not easy keeping in touch with home while going on tour.

The following morning we went over to the central park where there was a huge tower with a clock. You could see the tower from all around the town. We climbed the stairs to the top and got some great pictures.

USULUTAN, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 24, THURSDAY

We left San Vicente and traveled east along the coastal plain toward Usulutan. It was about 60 miles southeast of San Salvador with a population of around 23,000. The ocean was just visible on the southern horizon and to the north huge volcanos towered above us.

We performed at a school where the kids had just finished their final exams and were rather rowdy. A few families attended and the performance went well. Abrams was working there and had done a great job getting things ready.

SAN MIGUEL, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 25, FRIDAY

We traveled the 25 miles by bus to San Miguel some 75 miles east-southeast of San Salvador with a population of about 70,000. It was the eastern-most point of the entire mission.

We arrived at the theater and the show went very well. We played to a full house. Now we would start the final swing back toward Guatemala City.

COLONIA SANTA LUCIA, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 26, SATURDAY

We took the bus 75 miles west-northwest ack to San Salvador. We stopped off in Santa Lucia to leave our equipment, then off to McDonald's for some fine cuisine.

We did an outside performance in the afternoon behind the chapel in Santa Lucia. There was not a very large crowd but we had a great time anyway.

CHANNEL 2 TELEVISION STUDIO, SAN SALVADOR
AUGUST 26, SATURDAY

After the show in Santa Lucia we grabbed a taxi and hurried over to the TV studio downtown. We met with the host of the TV show "Buscando Estrellas." He briefed us on what he was going to ask us during the show, but when we were on the air he asked us none of those questions.

We were featured as "guest stars" on the show. Teel was the most "silver tongued" so he did the lion's share of talking which was fine with the rest of us. The MC would visit and joke with us, then go to a tape of one of the numbers we had taped back on the 22nd. It was by far the easiest performance we had done because we just got to sit back and watch what we had already done.

The MC kept telling jokes we did not understand but we laughed anyway. I was not paying much attention to what he was saying when he suddenly asked me where in the U.S. I was from. My mind went totally blank. I couldn't remember where I was from nor which language I was supposed to answer in. Such a mental condition has now been identified as "mentis gaseosis" or "brain gas." I found it was better to keep my mouth shut and have people think I was a fool than to open it and remove all doubt, at least on TV anyway.

CHILDREN'S ORPHANAGE, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 26, SATURDAY

We left the studio and prepared for our evening performance at the orphanage. Teel and Eddo went to get hamburgers and forgot the address of the orphanage. The time to perform arrived but Teel and Eddo did not. Mundy and I got up and started improvising. It was kind of fun because Teel had all the good songs we wished we could do so we gave it a shot. It was not the same without him or Eddo.

When we were half-way through the show Teel and Eddo came. We had a quick huddle and improvised a continuation of an already-determined-sub-par performance. Even Mother Nature did not approve of our performance because it began to rain with such force the noise did not permit us to continue. The show was called on account of rain: No hits, two runs, and five walks.

TICKET SELLING, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 27, SUNDAY

Elder Curtis was working a threesome so I split with him to go to church in Santa Lucia. Some of the members were excited because they had seen us on TV.

We had dinner with Elders Gomm and Curtis, then to sacrament meeting with Mundy in Monserrat to visit some old friends. We then went selling tickets with Elder Keat who outsold me by one. Mundy wouldn't quit until he had sold what he thought to be sufficient. I spent the evening with Baria because his comp was on a boarder change.

PUERTA DEL DIABLO, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 28, MONDAY

Baria and I bought some kite string and headed for Puerta Del Diablo just outside of San Salvador. A street drunk was giving us a bad time but we just ignored him. Then he made the mistake of slugging Baria who held a brown belt in karate. Baria held his cool rather well. When the guy came at him he just put a foot on the guys chest and shoved him back. The street drunk decided on his own that it was time to leave.

Puerta del Diablo was up in the mountains. The view from there was fantastic. We launched our kite but the low hanging clouds quickly soaked it with rain and it flew no more. The Elders from Santa Anita were there also. When the rain hit we had to run for cover. Elder Clark put on quite a comedy show trying to stay out of the rain.

DE CAMARA THEATER, LAYCO, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 28, MONDAY

We got back in time for the show at the theater. The place was packed and we had a very successful show. It was getting increasingly more difficult to maintain enthusiasm for the show.

ZACAMIL THEATER, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 29, TUESDAY
We arrived at the theater in a pouring rain. The theater was huge and modern compared to many of the other places we played. The large spotlight had a difficult time cutting through all the rising cigarette smoke.

The show went very well and many good references were collected. We celebrated by hitching in the back of a truck to McDonald's for some burgers, then off to Pop's for ice cream. We had a great time joking with Elder Rhodes.

CENTER FOR SPECIAL EDUCATION, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 30, WEDNESDAY

I was dubious about performing at the Center for Special Ed. I wondered if there was any real point to doing the show for the mentally impaired. I had thought the object of the show was to strengthen families and get references from people interested in the church. Fortunately my doubts were not heeded. The show had a special spirit about it, one that was different from the other shows.

We did the show outside for all the mentally and physically disabled children. Looking into those distorted yet innocent little faces, the half-closed eyes, the deformed little bodies had a profound effect on all of us.

The final number, "I Am A Child of God," was the most simple yet powerful performance of that song we had ever done. All of us had tears in our eyes following the singing of that beautiful song.

It was finally beginning to dawn on me that the real purpose of the show was not to conduct a public relations tour, not to advertise, not to do radio and TV shows. It was about love. Pure and simple love for other people. The love of sharing, lifting, offering hope. Those little children provided all of that for us. We were the recipients of their pure and innocent love. Suddenly it was not as difficult to get excited about performing. It didn't seem so much like work anymore.

COLONIA SANTA TECLA, SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 30, WEDNESDAY
SHAKING AND QUAKING

People started entering the theater as soon as we began setting up the equipment. The place was filled in no time at all. We expected a peaceful and solid performance. We were wrong.

We had just finished a number half-way through the show when suddenly the floor started shaking accompanied by a low rumble. The shaking quickly intensified and multiplied in strength so quickly it all seemed quite unreal. The sound was deafening as were the screams of people pushing and shoving for the exits. I looked up at the ceiling and saw dust and dirt falling from the ceiling.

Though it only lasted a few seconds it seemed much longer. For some strange reason all five of us remained unusually calm. One of the guys in the group stepped to the microphone and said he hoped everyone enjoyed our special effects. People started calming down. A few left realizing aftershocks would undoubtedly would occur. They were wrong. We finished the rest of the show without further incident and the show was a success. We hitched a ride home and hit the sack. What a day.

SONSONATE, EL SALVADOR
AUGUST 31, THURSDAY

We had our last meal at McDonald's then got things ready for the trip to Sonsonate. Mundy and I had the idea that we could hitch a ride with all our equipment. The other guys said we were crazy. We already knew that, so we accepted the challenge. We got lucky and hitched a ride on a truck and then another car that brought us all the way into town. Never tell Mundy he can't do something.

Sonsonate was about 40 miles west of San Salvador out on the coast about 12 miles north of the ocean. About 36,000 people lived there. Mundy had worked there before and was anxious to look up members as well as former investigators. We often got the opportunity to follow up on people we had taught before to see how the seeds were progressing.

A local band asked if they could be our opening act. Oh, how I wish we had said no. The theater showed a movie before we were to perform and the people waiting outside for our performance got soaked in the rain. Then the drummer for the warm-up band did not show up, so they wanted us to warm-up the audience for them until he got there. Imagine that. Imagine we agreed to do it.

The band started playing, then refused to quit when we asked them to. I guess they were trying to stretch their 15 minutes of fame. The audience was still wet and by that time very tired by the time we took the stage at 9:30 p.m. Then our PA amplifier burned up and we had to borrow the warm-up band's equipment which we were not familiar with. The best part of the show was when it was finally over.

My second senior in the mission, Elder Woodman, came down from Guatemala to see the show. He had missed each and every performance until that night. How I wish he had missed that particular show.

MOVIES OF THE MONTH

Nicholas and Alexandria

French Connection

Lawrence of Arabia

The Godfather, "El Padrino" (didn't see it).

SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR
SEPTEMBER 1, FRIDAY
Because we had played for a hospital fund raising project the hospital had paid for our stay in a rather fancy hotel. We took advantage of the air conditioning and left it on as long as we could. Did I mention we also slept as late as possible?

We then carried all our equipment to the outskirts of town where we got a great hitch all the way to Santa Ana some 35 miles northwest of San Salvador.

SANTA ANA, EL SALVADOR
SEPTEMBER 1, FRIDAY

Santa Ana was about 25 miles north of Sonsonate with a population of around 100,000. Kusch took us to the courthouse where we put on a short show for the government employees. Kusch also took some slides for us with my camera.

We ate some hamburgers then on our way to the church for the next show we heard a sound behind us. We looked back and saw a curtain of rain rushing toward us. We had to run for cover and just made it to the chapel before the rain hit us.

The chapel where we played was a new modern one. We were surprised at the support of the members, the acceptance of the audience, and the smoothness of the show itself. It went off without a hitch and was one of our most successful shows of the entire tour. It felt great.

While walking home after the show we got soaked in the rain. We relaxed with the people we were staying with and played some songs for them. We also watched some of the 72 Olympics on TV. Eddo and I then played a late-night game of chess, then off to bed.

CON-MAN
SANTA ANA, EL SALVADOR
SEPTEMBER 2, SATURDAY

Mundy and I had to do some errands and noticed we were being followed by a rather mysterious looking guy. When it became obvious we turned around and asked him what he wanted. He said he had an address that he knew was very important to us and for a certain amount of money he would let us have it. Mundy told him to forget it because we were "in the FBI and already knew everything we needed to know about addresses."

We then did yet another show at the chapel, but the janitor had changed the settings on the electrical circuits and the sound was terrible. We finally had to stop in the middle of the show to make an attempt at rectifying the situation. The janitor meant no harm but things always seem to turn out fine. He sold me his mandolin for $6.00. It was worth a bad performance to get a good mandolin for $6.00.

GOODBY EL SALVADOR
SEPTEMBER 3, SUNDAY

We left Santa Ana at 4 a.m., met the others at the church, packed our equipment for the last time in El Salvador and headed northwest back toward Guatemala City. We did not have any luck getting a hitch but then a TICA bus came by and we rode in style to the boarder then on to Guat City. When we got there the lady we were renting from had rented out our room so we stayed with the Arnolds.

FIRESIDE, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 3, SUNDAY
We got into the office in time to perform a few numbers for a fireside. It went rather well, then we had interviews with President Glade. He told us Teel was to be the new second assistant. The decision has been made not to continue the show. It had served its purpose. I looked forward to getting back to regular missionary work and speaking Spanish again.

After sacrament meeting we went to the Biltmore for chef salads, then back to the Arnold's to listen to Bro. Arnold talk about the recent conference in Mexico.
EL TEJANO, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 4, MONDAY

We celebrated our last D-day together at the local bowling alley, then off to see the show "Mary, Queen of Scots." Then off to El Tejano, one of our favorite places to eat. We were now in the process of saying goodby and had mixed emotions: Mostly joy and happiness. We had enjoyed what we had been involved in for the past three months but we were all the type of individuals who looked forward, not back.

CHURCH NEWS STORY
GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 5, TUESDAY

Some reporter from the church news was doing a story of our tour. Teel suggested doing a film strip. President Glade approved of the idea.

EXTRA BAGGAGE

With the show now completed, what was there to do with five extra Elders? This was a rather difficult part of the tour for we were accustomed to being on the road and at least doing something. Now there was nothing to do but spend the days doing errands, bowling, shooting pool, going to movies, all the things we thought would be so much fun but were now hollow and meaningless. The good side of this particular time was that it made us even more anxious to "return to the mission field."

We could not stay at the Arnold's anymore so we made arrangements to move to the Ashford home. He was a military man who had been baptized three years earlier. Their stories about their conversions were just what we needed to hear at that time. Sister Ashford said her only regret was that her family had not been able to benefit from the church much earlier. I had always taken for granted the fact that I was a fourth generation LDS on both my father's as well as my mother's side. Sister Ashford wished she could have been so lucky. I felt very ungreatful.

TRANSFER DAY, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 7, THURSDAY

We went to the office to get the moves. Not knowing what was going to happen to us was wearing on our nerves. We were surprised to find out that Mundy and I were to continue as companions in San Vicente, El Salvador. Mundy and I had known each other since we were greenies back in San Salvador nine months earlier. Before our missions were over we would spend almost the entire 22 months either as companions, in the same district, or the same zone.

Cameron would be going to Barrio Nuevo, Eddo to Ward 2 in Guatemala City, and Teel was the new second assistant. We were all excited to know what directions we would be taking. We still had some loose ends to wrap up before we would be shipping out next Monday.

TAKING SOME SHOTS
GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 8, FRIDAY

We dressed up in our uniforms and then went downtown to the recording studio to take some pictures for the Church News. The reporter then interviewed us on tape to get some additional information. I was uncomfortable being interviewed and was relieved when it was over.

We then hurried back to the mission office and got into the van to head for Zacapa to redo the rained-out performance we almost had back on August 10.

ZACAPA, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 8, FRIDAY
FINAL PERFORMANCE

We rode the 70 miles east-northeast of Guat City in the mission van. It was a much more enjoyable trip than the previous one in the chicken bus. We set up on the same outdoor circular stage with the water pond between us and the audience. I wondered if the purpose of that was to keep us safe from hostile spectators.

There was a different feeling about this show. As we finished each number we knew it was the last time we would ever be performing it in front of a live audience. As spectators applauded for each number we would look at each other with a different kind of smile, a look reflecting a sense of accomplishment, of memories both good and bad, of challenges as well as successes.

I also had the opportunity to say a final goodby to Elder Roger McDonald. He would be leaving soon for his home in Woodland Hills, California. I had come to know him as a greenie back in October of 71 when we were in a play together in San Salvador. He was one of my mentors whom I greatly respected.

RECORDING STUDIO, GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 9, SATURDAY

We spent the morning making tapes in a recording studio where a member was employed. We made one final tape of our songs on professional equipment and finally did a decent job. When the Teton Dam collapsed in 1976 and took out my house I lost my copy of the tape we had made. If anyone reading this still has a copy I would be most appreciative to have a duplicate.

SAYING GOODBY
GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA
SEPTEMBER 10, SUNDAY

Teel, Cameron, Eddo, Mundy and Myself went to church together then out to a small steak house for a last meal. We had a little awards ceremony and I received the "Vanity Award." I can't imagine why.

Our final meeting was exciting yet somewhat nostalgic. We had worked together, traveled together, helped each other through sicknesses, laughed, quarreled, as well as testified of our common belief in the truthfulness of the church. I remember President Glade telling us that the bonds we were forming as missionaries would bring us joy and happiness throughout our lives. He said we would always have a common sense of belonging and that whenever we would get together we would almost instantaneously revive old friendships, that our conversations would be accompanied with smiles and remembered joys. He was right. I never imagined the Internet would be one of the means for realizing his prediction.

We had our own private awards ceremony to celebrate the new beginnings we were now making. We had always called Elder Randy Teel by the name of Dobb Allwood, a southern radio announcer. He was our district leader as well as my individual guitar teacher. He taught me flamenco style guitar playing as well as more Cajun songs than the average person would care to listen to. Twenty-five years later I can still play all the songs he taught me. Perhaps some day I'll master them. I have lost contact with him and have been unable to find him anywhere. Anyone with knowledge of his whereabouts, please let me know.

Elder John C. Cameron was nicknamed Clarence. If I remember correctly his middle name was Clarence. He was a genius at organizing and directing, using his stage experience to the benefit of all of us. I have also lost contact with Cameron and would appreciate any clues as to where he is hiding.
Elder Scott Harrison Eddo was given the name of Fester Harrison. We first called him Festus, then he cut his hand and when it got infected we changed it to Fester. He was born to be in show biz and is presently Sylvester Stallone's make-up man. He has traveled all over the world and loves every minute of it.

Elder Randy Mundy was given the nickname of Ralph Emery, also a southern radio personality. I have yet to know anyone as determined and, yes, stubborn as Mundy. When he decided to do something there was no turning back. After our missions we attempted to form a band in Topeka, Kansas, and spent about three more months trying to get it off the ground. He is still working in show business working to make music in Nashville.

My road would take me in another direction. I had enough of show biz and longed for a quieter life. I returned to southeast Idaho and married the girl Teel, Mundy, Cameron and Eddo told me I was a fool for dumping and we have been married since May of '74. We have five children, one daughter and four sons, one of which just returned from a mission to Harrisburg, Penn.

I still perform locally on the guitar, but only when it fits my schedule. I am as famous as I want to be, and that is not very much. I am an elementary principal of two small rural schools and love everyday of work. I spend the summers with my children swimming in the irrigation canals and going to baseball games. My first priority is being a full-time father. I am one of the richest people I know.

After exploring so many roads, I took the one less-traveled, and that has made all the difference.

APPENDIX A
PERFORMANCE DATES

JUNE 6 LA FLORIDA GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JUNE 10 RUTH S. JACOB FUNERAL GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JUNE 13 ZONE CONFERENCE GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JUNE 15 ZONE CONFERENCE SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
JUNE 21 LA FLORIDA GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JUNE 27 WARD 6 GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JUNE 30 FIRST & THIRD WARDS GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 2 ZONE FIRESIDE GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 4 WARD 2 GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 7 CHIMALTENANGO THEATER CHIMALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 8 ZONE FIRESIDE SANTA ANA EL SALVADOR
JULY 9 LAYCO CHAPEL SAN SALVADOR EL
SALVADOR
JULY 8 ZONE FIRESIDE SANTA ANA EL SALVADOR
JULY 11 ROTARY WIVES LUNCHEON GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 11 ANTIGUA THEATER, SHOW 1 ANTIGUA GUATEMALA
JULY 11 ANTIGUA THEATER, SHOW 2 ANTIGUA GUATEMALA JULY 13 JOCOTALES GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 14 WARD 5 GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 15 LA FLORIDA GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 17 XELA ZONE FIRESIDE QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 17 WARD 4 GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 20 SOLOLA THEATER SOLOLA GUATEMALA
JULY 21 PATZUN THEATER PATZUN GUATEMALA
JULY 22 PATZICIA CHAPEL PATZICIA GUATEMALA
JULY 24 EL QUICHE EL QUICHE GUATEMALA
JULY 25 TOTONICAPAN TOTONICAPAN GUATEMALA
JULY 26 MOMOSTENANGO MOMOSTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 27 HUEHUETENANGO HUEHUETENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 27 ENGLISH HIGH SCHOOL GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
JULY 28 XELA GIRLS' SCHOOL QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 28 XELA BOYS' SCHOOL QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 28 GIRL'S SCHOOL QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 28 BOYS' SCHOOL QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 28 HIGH SCHOOL QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 28 MILITARY BASE QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 28 XELA QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 29 XELA THEATER QUEZALTENANGO GUATEMALA
JULY 30 EL QUICHE THEATER EL QUICHE GUATEMALA
JULY 31 SAN PEDRO/SAN MARCOS SAN MARCOS GUATEMALA
AUG 1 COATEPEQUE COATEPEQUE GUATEMALA
AUG 2 RETALHULEU THEATER RETALHULEU GUATEMALA
AUG 2 RETALHULEU BRANCH RETALHULEU GUATEMALA
AUG 3 MAZATENANGO MAZATENANGO GUATEMALA
AUG 4 PREP SCHOOL GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
AUG 4 SANTA LUCIA COTZMALGUAPA GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
AUG 5 ESCUINTLA THEATER ESCUINTLA GUATEMALA
AUG 7 VILLA NUEVA GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
AUG 10 ZACAPA THEATER ZACAPA GUATEMALA
AUG 11 CHIQUIMULA CHIQUIMULA GUATEMALA
AUG 12 WARD 6 GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
AUG 14 JALAPA JALAPA GUATEMALA
AUG 15 JUTIAPA JUTIAPA GUATEMALA
AUG 15 JUTIAPA RADIO SHOW JUTIAPA GUATEMALA
AUG 16 AHUCHAPAN AHUCHAPAN EL SALVADOR
AUG 17 CHALCHUAPA CHALCHUAPA EL SALVADOR
AUG 18 SOYAPONGO SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 19 SAN SALVADOR PARK SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 19 IBERIA THEATER SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 20 HOTEL COATEPEQUE (1) LAGO DE COATEPEQUE EL SALVADOR
AUG 20 HOTEL COATEPEQUE (2) LAGO DE COATEPEQUE EL SALVADOR
AUG 21 THEATER CAESS SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 22 TV 2 STUDIO TAPING SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 22 ZACATECOLUCA ZACATECOLUCA EL SALVADOR
AUG 23 SAN VICENTE THEATER SAN VICENTE EL SALVADOR
AUG 24 USULUTAN THEATER USULUTAN EL SALVADOR
AUG 25 SAN MIGUEL SAN MIGUEL EL SALVADOR
AUG 26 SANTA LUCIA SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 26 TV 2 BROADCAST SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 26 ORPHANAGE FOR CHILDREN SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 28 LAYCO, DE CAMARA THEATER SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 29 ZACAMIL THEATER SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 30 SPECIAL EDUCATION CENTER SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 30 SANTA TECLA SAN SALVADOR EL SALVADOR
AUG 31 SONSONATE SONSONATE EL SALVADOR
SEPT 1 ALCALDE DE SANTA ANA SANTA ANA EL SALVADOR
SEPT 1 SANTA ANA BRANCH SANTA ANA EL SALVADOR
SEPT 3 WARD FIRESIDE GUATEMALA CITY GUATEMALA
SEPT 8 ZACAPA THEATER ZACAPA GUATEMALA

We did 78 performances in 101 days, 51 in Guatemala and 27 in El Salvador. We covered 29 different cities, 9 in El Salvador and 20 in Guatemala.