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Tuesday, September 07, 2004



After leaving the library in Hamilton, I went through the downtown area to find a park, so I could do some writing and eat. I got turned around and went through the inner city area. I was a little bit nervous, people there weren't really friendly or hostile either, but I'm sure I got some strange looks wondering why I was there. I was looking for the LDS chapel and found it, just across the town boundary in Fairfield, and then went looking for a park where I could spend the night.
When I got up in the morning, my canteen was missing. My first thought was that it had been stolen; my second that I had left it at a convenience store I visited the night before. Fortunately, that's where it was, still. I attended meetings at all three LDS congregations: In the first one, the Fairfield ward, a couple invited me over to dinner that evening. It was a fast and testimony meeting: the Sunday School lesson was on the first few chapters of Helaman, including the origin of the Gadianton robbers, and the priesthood lesson was on principles of welfare; specifically health. The second was a Spanish-speaking branch. I haven't been able to converse easily in Spanish on general topics, although I spent 2 years in a Spanish-speaking mission, but I understood the service and the testimonies in this one. In the Hamilton ward, I had another invitation, but since I had already accepted one, I declined with thanks. This sunday school lesson was another repeat of the lesson on warfare, with yet a different emphasis, and the Priesthood lesson discussed a recent message by President Hinckley calling on members to more actively resist the moral rot influencing our society. Afterwards, the couple that invited me to dinner came to pick me up. They invited me to stay the night, wash my clothes, and in the morning, take me to my next destination. Afterwards we watched news and a couple of programs on BYU TV. When I got their address so I could sent a card when I arrive, I was a little disconcerted to find that they they have a Cincinatti address. After all my efforts to avoid going through there! But, I must say that both of these wards were more friendly than average, compared to many I have visited.
I had decided to go through Lebanon, then Wilmington, but they thought it would be almost as easy to go to Wilmington, so that's where we went. I had hoped to stop at Wilmington College, but since it was Labor Day, I didn't even try to stop at the libraries, but headed south to New Vienna, and didn't quite make it there before nightfall, and stopped a couple of miles outside.
New Vienna is a small town showing obvious signs of declining population and prosperity. It looks run down and didn't have a library, or much else, according to the two residents who were waiting at City hall for the attendent there to run some errand. I didn't stay, and heades east on State route 28. A passing farmer gave me a ride a couple of miles, and I hiked nearly as far as the next town, when a young couple stopped and offered a ride to Greenfield.
I'd say more, but my time here is limited. My next destination will be Chillicothe.

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