Mt. Isa

Mt. Isa

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 29, 2011


Good to hear from all of you. It should be getting cooler there soon I hope; it seem like it has been just sweltering for ages. That is not fun, I'm not really look forward to that when the summer rolls around here. I've heard about the hurricane and the earthquakes over in the States, it is interesting stuff. It makes you think. It seems like, as I've been out here, I hear a lot about the natural disasters that are going down around the world but I guess that is all there is to talk about when you see religious people. Give the Coombs family my regards, I miss them. That is crazy that Madeline's has grown that much. I can't imagine what they're Christmas photo's going to be like. I need to send them a letter.

Good to hear everything is running well, dad. It will be awesome if you get to watch Shorty’s plane while he's gone (on Mission). I'm sure you're just having a great time flying all around the metroplex and all. Once you get your skills honed you'll have to take mom for a ride again just to see if things have changed over the last couple of years. (note from the Mom: that won’t be happening…)

This week has been really good, actually, it has been great. We had Zone Conference on Wednesday and we drove the car down and handed it over the Mission President. It was a sad time. The training though was really good. It lasted from about 9am to 3pm but it was great. The new Area Councilor, Elder Pearson, was there and he's a great speaker. We learned a lot and it was very uplifting. They also introduced the new I-am-Mormon campaign that will be airing from September to the end of the year. It the first ad campaign the church is doing outside of the US and it is going to be huge. Go on to if you haven't gotten the chance to see it yet. They have some good I-am-Mormon clips; it is going to be interesting to say the least. We're excited and hopefully the campaign will help get the church’s name out and to clear up some misconceptions.

We also have a couple of baptismal dates set so we're really excited and hopeful for them. Things are going surprising well and the Lord has really blessed us. It is great to have some success!

As for Warwick, we really don’t have the roaches like we did in Mt. Isa and it is still a little cool for the toad or frogs to be coming out. It has been cooler and rainy lately but it is all good. It is already getting warmer and it will be hot before long. There's not much to do here on P-days so we basically just chill in the flat and sleep. It’s fun. Warwick is a small town; we've done some window shopping and walked around town but again, it is a small place.

Thanks for the emails and the uplifting words. I'm doing good. Love you, talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch

August 22, 2011


Sounds like things are going well back home. It is good when everything is nice and calm. Hope you find a job mom, from what I hear things are pretty tight, like you said, but best of luck to you all the same. Thanks for the email Colin it's good to hear from you and I’m glad to hear that classes are going well. Congrats on those A's. Keep it up and work hard. Enjoy the cooler weather as it comes. It sounds like it is quite hot in Texas.

It has been rather cold and rainy here lately. The house we live in is an old Queenslander or basically a house built on stilts off the ground. The air circulates but it is rather cool but that is all good, we stay warm most of the time. It has been a change from the warmer weather up north but I'm adjusting ok all the same.

Queenslander buildings are primarily of timber construction and can be low or high-set, one to two storeys. They are typically "tripartite" in sectional composition; underfloor (stumps), primary rooms (can be two levels), and roof. All have one or more veranda spaces, a sheltered edge of the building that is typically only part-enclosed and used as another living zone. This consideration for climate is the defining characteristic of the Queenslander type.

The raising of the main living spaces off the ground can be seen as both a stylistic and practical device. The vertical "stumps", initially of timber, allow the building to "float" above the terrain. Queenslanders all have this underfloor area that is used to cool the building through ventilation and also for protection of the main structure from termite attack and other pests. The stumps also help to overcome any variations in the terrain that would normally require earthworks to flatten for construction and allow for the natural flow of water across the terrain in the event of excessive rain and downpours.

Funny thing is that we've had our own car for the last 3 weeks but last Friday the Assistant to the President called us and told us that at this coming Zone Conference we'd be losing the car permanently. :( We'll be on bikes full time for the foreseeable future. It is good though. With the cold weather and the car we haven't really got a lot of exercise and the kgs have started to creep back on. Fun times though, it'll be good to get on the bikes.

We have been teaching a good deal which has been great. We even had two young teens that we've been teaching come to church and we are hopeful for them. They're good. The hardest thing will be finding fellowship for them with the opposing lifestyles of their families. It'll be interesting but we are hoping for the best.

We ran into a 1/2 American Indian yesterday while we were tracting and she had previously done a little looking into what we believed about her ancestors. She not Christian and is very skeptical but she is very nice and interesting to talk to. We gave her a Book of Mormon and set up a time to see her later this week. Hopefully she'll be there and willing to listen to the message. It is interesting the kind of people you run in to. Some are just shocking but it is good to run into nice interesting people.

I got a chance to listen to some of the music and talks Dad sent. Thanks for that and everything is working well now.

The unthinkable happened and we got invited to Seminary this coming Thursday for Scripture Mastery...awe…NO! In the coming week, we'll be cramming to memorize as many D&C verses as we can but it is not look hopefully. We are going to get schooled by the two girls in the class. Guess you can tell Sis. LaFerney I got what was coming. LOL. Tell her hi and that I miss those fun Seminary mornings. Hope she's doing well. The D&C is really good though; deep doctrine there, but yeah interesting all the same. Keep up the good studies/work Colin, dad and you too mom.

Thanks for the messages and uplifting words. Talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch

August 15, 2011

Hey family,

Yeah sorry about the mix up last week with the transfers down from up north and the moving in to a new area. P-day temporarily got changing to another day for that week only. It happens every now and when you're down in the city (Brisbane), you have various other events going on. It sounds like everyone is doing well. It really sounds like it has been hot there. 40 day over 100 F wow that is bad! Lol Glad everyone is doing well and you've made it through a semester of Uni already Colin. Time flies when you're having fun. Enjoy it while you're up there. It was great to hear that Nivla and Shorty got their (Mission) call to Argentina. Sarah Vining emailed me as well and she is going on a Mission and just got her call as well. She's going to Everett Washington speaking English. It is exciting times.

It has been an interesting couple of weeks. Warwick is a lot different than Mt. Isa but it is a small town. It is a little farming community and it is very spread out over the country side. Like my last area we cover a good deal of area outside of Warwick but we don't get out there too often. We do have a full time car though so at least we haven't had to face the rolling hill of Warwick and the chilly weather. Although we have a car there is a Senior Missionary couple coming into the Mission and the President has told us that the car going to get taken from us. BOOOO. We're happy to have it for now though. Normally, in the past, missionaries in Warwick have been like we were in Mt Isa in that we really don’t have too much contact with other missionaries but that just fine. I like it better that way. We do get to drive into Brisbane next week for a special training so we're excited about that. Hopefully we'll get to go the Temple but we prolly won’t.

The people are generally nice to us here, which is good. My first couple of days here we even had a couple of people say hi to us in the shops and everything. It was really, really weird. The Branch here is fairly bigger than in Mt. Isa but it is basically made of two generations of two separate extended families. So in other words, you have the grandparents and then their grown children with their families. It is quite weird; everyone is related. Heaps of young primary kids and church is very loud and rowdy. Good people though. The flat is really big and quite cold in the mornings but we'll be moving in the next month or so. Hopefully the next flat will be a little nice and better suited for our missionary efforts.

We've been teaching a couple of people which has been good as well and a nice change of things. My Companions is good. He's from Sydney and has been out for about 18 months now and he's getting a little trunky but that is all good. He is a good teacher and we work well together. It’s good to have a Companion with some extra experience, I need it. He loves Lord of the Rings and has a Lord of the Rings Risk set, so we've been playing that on our down time.

I'm doing good. My shoes are holding up well and I have everything I need. Thanks for the emails and the uplifting words. It is good to hear from you. Thanks for everything. Love you and talk to you next week hopefully.

Elder Hatch

August 8, 2011


Hope things are going well. I’ve been in Warwick for almost a week now. It is basically a small farming town. Everything is nice and spread out and everyone has a good amount of land to live on. There aren't as many dogs or gates so it is great. My Companion is really excited to be in the area after it has been closed for the last 6 month and the Branch is struggling. They are happy to have up back as well. We're optimistic and really hope we can help things get moving here. Our flat is massive. It is a 3 bedroom house with a full kitchen and living room and an open screened front porch thing. It is crazy!

Unfortunately, the last Elders that were here (6 months ago) failed to clean out the freezer before they turned it off. That was quite a nasty sight; so much so that we even had to get a new fridge. It was bad. We have a car for now but it'll be taken off us soon, sadly, and it will be back to the bikes. It will be a hard transition because the town isn't flat at all and is very spread out over a valley. It will be a trial but we'll deal with it when the time comes.

It is a good place though and we're excited and hoping for the best. My Comps quite experience so it feels good to have that extra support and experience rather than the feeling of complete responsibility that comes a Senior Comp.

Time is running short. Talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch

Friday, August 5, 2011

Note from the Mom

Sorry for the delay in updating Kiefer's blog. Thanks for your patience and for checking in.

Kiefer is now in Warwick, Queensland, Australia.

We did receive a package from Kiefer this week. It contained a copy of the Koran and a Kipa which he received from a member in Mt. Isa. He also sent us some Vegemite (which we have not been brave enough to taste yet...we are waiting for Colin to be home...) and some Tim Tams. The Tim Tams came with instructions for a common Missionary challenge for the Brisbane Mission.

A Tim Tam is a delicious cookie ("biccie" in Oz slang) made by Arnott's of Australia that is chocolate, or some other, cream between two chocolate wafer layers, all covered with milk or dark chocolate. There are some variations - Tia Maria filling, double coating, and the like.

Kiefer's instructions for a Tim Tam Slam:

This is a typical Missionary challenge.


Mix a cup of Hot Milo(hot chocolate).
Bite off opposing corners of the tim tam.

The Slam:

Without using your hands, use the Time Tam as a straw to drink as much hot chocolate as you can before it (the cookie) starts to melt.

Before the Tim Tam melts out of your mouth, tilt your head back while you still have the Tim Tam in you mouth and enjoy.

Warwick, Queensland, Australia

Warwick is a town in Queensland, Australia, lying 130 kilometres (81 mi) south-west of Brisbane. It is the administrative centre of the Southern Downs Local Government Area. In 2006 the town of Warwick had a population of 12,562. The surrounding Darling Downs have fostered a strong agricultural industry for which Warwick, together with the larger city of Toowoomba, serve as convenient service centres. Warwick is situated on the Condamine River.

Mean max temp: 24.2 °C 76 °F
Mean min temp: 10.8 °C 51 °F
Annual rainfall: 692.1 mm 27.2 in

Referred to as the 'Rose and Rodeo City', Warwick was established in 1849, the town is now the centre for the surrounding region famous for its horse and cattle studs and fine wool.

August 2 (post transfer)


Yeah it’s me and it is Tuesday afternoon. This is my P-day now that I've just been transferred and my Comp has to do emails so I thought I'd explain just a little bit of my journeys over the last 24 hours or so.

The flight down to Brisbane was good. It seemed a lot faster than I remembered the flight up. The sights out of the plane were awesome. Everything was very dry and dead. I even saw a couple of wild fires burning which was cool. I got to the airport and chilled in Brisbane airport for about an hour before the ZL's (Zone Leaders) picked me up and took me to other missionaries that I'd be staying the night with. We had a chill night. There were four of us running together for the afternoon and the Senior Comp (home bound) of the area had been there 9 months so he had a good number of goodbyes to say. On top of that he hadn't packed...the bad thing was we didn't get back to the flat until like 10pm and then he literally packed until 2am so none of us got any sleep really. I think I got about 1 hour of sleep last night. It was tough. We went to Transfer meeting today which was interesting. There are 17 missionaries going home and 12 coming in this transfer so that’s a really big transfer. There were so many people there. As it turns out I have been re-assigned to a small town called Warick about 2 hours west of Brisbane. It was really weird being back in the big city so I'm comforted slightly that I get to go back out in the country. I'll still have the same challenges but it'll be good. The area has been closed for the last 6 months so we have a good deal to do to pick up things and get it running properly. It is a good little town; we have a car so it should be a good time. Once again, it is a very small town so we'll prolly be biking a fair bit. All good though. I need to shape up. My Comp luckily is quite experience and has served in the area previously about a year ago. It'll be fun, I hope. Unfortunately I've kind of been running on adrenaline for the last day and haven't had anything to eat to I'm a little knackered. On top of that we have to clean the freezer. The last set of Missionaries left food in there and turned the fridge off so there are heaps of maggots in there and it smell awful to say the least. Some missionaries are just shocking I can't explain.

It will be good experience I reckon. The members here are great already and we haven't been here a day yet.

Well my Comp is ready to go. It was good to email you and at least to let you know I got to my new area safe and sound. Tomorrow we have to drive back into the city for a training but all is good. Thanks for everything I'll let you know my address later went we decide if we're moving or not. Love you. TTYL

Elder Hatch

August 1


Luckily I get to email this week. The big news is that I did get a call Friday. I'm going back down to Brisbane. I won’t know exactly where I'm going until Tuesday but I could be anywhere. It'll be interesting to say the least. It’s weird to be in the limbo and not have anywhere that is yours. Friday night we got the call and I started packing. Saturday morning we picked up Elder Dahl, my replacement, from the airport, showed him around town and cleaned the flat for “deep clean”. It was good fun. Our flat is about the size of the kitchen back home with a small bedroom off to the side so it was a little more cozy with the extra Elder there but it was good time all the same. Elder Dahl's a good guy and he'll do well here in Isa I reckon. It’s weird after being here so long to be finally leaving but at the same time it’s good to move on. Some days it feels like I've been here for ages while other times it feels like I just got off the plane. It's been an interesting journey to say the least. I'm looking forward to going to the temple in the next transfer. It’s really been a blessing to get to go to the temple once a transfer and now I'm missing it after being up here for 6 month. I always think it could be worse though. Some Elders are up- north for 9 months at a time. It’s different to say the least. Being in the city is going to be shocking I’m sure. Too many people...people everywhere. lol.

Right now we're in the library in Mt. Isa. I've packed all my stuff in the car and shortly, following doing emails, they'll be taking me to the airport to fly back down to Brisbane. Not going to lie, I’m a little bummed about not being able to take the 26 hour bus ride, but it is all good.

Thanks for the email Colin glad to hear you’re doing well and that things are going good for you. Enjoy your last week at school before the holidays and keep pushing through finals. That’s always a stressful time of the school year but it really feels good to have it done after you get out of that last test. Honestly. I was just telling my Comp how some weekends I'd get a massive pizza from Papa Johns and just go to town on that as a reward for finishing all those tests. Man the pizza over here is is like all thin crust and most regular pizzas are like 8 inch with not very many toppings. It’s sad. I miss good pizza lol.

Well got to get headed to my flight pretty soon. I'm a little nervous but I guess what's new? Thanks for everything and for the support and kind words…talk to you soon. Love you.

Elder Hatch


What is Vegemite?

Vegemite is considered as much a part of Australia's heritage as kangaroos and the Holden cars. It is actually an Australian obsession that has become a unique and loved symbol of the Australian nation. A Vegemite sandwich to an Australian kid is the equivalent of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich to an American kid - but the taste is QUITE different!

Vegemite is one of several yeast extract spreads sold in Australia. It is made from leftover brewers' yeast extract (a by-product of beer manufacture) and various vegetable and spice additives. It is very dark reddish-brown, almost black, in color, and one of the richest sources known of Vitamin B. It's thick like peanut butter, it's very salty, and it tastes like - well let's just say that it is an acquired taste!

Australian children are brought up on Vegemite from the time they're babies. It is said that Australians are known to travel all over the world with at least one small jar of Vegemite in their luggage, for fear that they will not be able to find it.

July 25th


Things are going well here. The last week was good. We stayed fairly busy and things went pretty smoothly. We have an older lady name Sister Spath in the branch who is almost 80 and who we visit regularly. She's from Germany originally but has lived here in Mt. Isa for ages. She a single sister but lives with another branch member named Bro. Aria who is almost 70 and is a for them. They are really good to us and just fun people to talk to and visit with. Anyway her daughter from Canada has been in town and they are leaving for a couple of months to go to Canada on vacation and work in the Cardstone temple. All the members of the Branch wished her well and we even had a photo session…lol. We've really enjoyed them and we'll miss them while they are on vacation.

Over the course of the week we had some cool stuff happen. Tuesday we were walking down the street and this inactive member that we didn't even know existed came out and invited us to dinner with they're family. They were basically like cowboys that normally work out in the middle of nowhere raising livestock but they're in town for a little while and so yeah. Good people and it was a good deal of fun to get to know them and what not. We even had a couple of random invites which was a little unusual. It’s funny at times when we knock on someone’s door and they say come in. They usually don’t know who we are and so it kind of an interesting situation. Still it’s weird all the same to have people invite us in on the spot because that never happens and I have to ask yourself sometimes...what is the angle...

Other than that it has been pretty normal. Not much going on the rodeo is starting here in a couple of weeks so the town’s population will prolly explode when that goes down. We had like 50 people at church this Sunday which was crazy and just unheard of for the most part. That was really cool. Sadly though the senior couple get cold easy and like it warm so it was very very warm though out sacrament meeting and most of the other meetings as well. Got to do something about that one…

A big thing they have going on down here is the rugby world cup just this last weekend, the Walabies played South Africa, so that was big. Everyone over here loves their rugby. Good times though.

I'm mailing off a package today...not really sure what’s all going to be in it but I have a gift someone gave me, some Tim Tams (chocolate cookies) and some Vegimite so far so yeah, I prolly find some other stuff to go in there and send that to you today. Enjoy. Hopefully nothing gets removed at customs.

Elder Hatch

July 18th


Thanks for the emails it’s good to hear from you as always.
I liked the picture of the dust storm in the valley, which sounds pretty cool. I bet it was a lot to clean up though. The pictures of the b-day (Grandma Guttery’s) party were great and everyone is looking really good.

I'm glad you found some Ginger Beer (soft drink) and tried it. It is definitely an acquired taste. I think I had it my first transfer here and then about three months later and I was hooked after that. Yeah, definitely give it another try, make sure it is well chilled and invert the bottle a couple of times… lol. I really enjoy it. A fun thing that the missionaries do here is called the peachy dance. You get a Bunderberg Peachy, like you saw at the store, and then after you try it you do a dance the mimics how you like it or dislike it. You should get some of that too. It is really very nice. I liked that one much better at first than the ginger beer at first. Try it and see what you think. It taste like a peach pie in a liquid form its good. They sell the ginger beers in a box of 10 and we've gotten a couple of those and gone through them over the last couple of months.

It sounds like it is very hot back home. I'm just glad it’s not that bad up here right now. It’s been in the teens, Celsius, in Brisbane and that’s pretty chilly so I’m not so keen about that now. It’s been nice here (Mt. Isa) and even on the warms side of things in the last week but it’s all good, the heat is not always bad.

Ha ha...Dad you’re getting trunky! (tired of being Bishop) That’s funny. You've done a good job though and you'll be missed I'm sure. They'll find something else fun for you to do so don't worry about that. That’s kind of how the church works lol.

We've had to start a miracle book to record ...daily our miracles. I'm not too keen on doing it, honestly, but we’ve been doing it and it is good to see the little ways the Lord has help us and strengthen us in the missionary work. I've been driving a little here and there with the senior couple's car but not too much whenever we go somewhere with them I'm the driver so that’s nice but we've still been biking a good deal as well. Transfer will be soon and I should be moving. I don’t know right now if I'll get flown down or take the bus. I'm not sure if I have a choice I think they just book whichever one is cheaper at the time. But since I flew up I might be busing down as well. It’s hard to say. I hope I get to bus down. It would be an interesting experience even if it was a painful one. I reckon. I won’t know for sure until I I'm either in Brisbane on the first or second of August or here in Isa. Either way it’s all good. The Rodeo is coming to Mt. Isa next month and things are about to get real crazy lol.

The week has been a slow one compared to last week the potentials we contacted and taught last week, fell through on the return appointments and our normal investigator were busy so we did some good finding for the week. Fun stuff. This week will be better though. I enjoy it here and it’s a good place but it can be hard. Studies are going well I feel like I'm learning a lot about the gospel and what not and that good.

Thanks for the emails and for the uplifting words. Love you; I'll talk to you next week.

Elder Hatch