It was a hot summer P-Day and we were on our way to the Dover Air Force Base. We arrived and got hooked up with tour guide T (Brother Hamner, him and his wife are the ward YSA reps! - Heather and T Hamner!). Brother Hamner is a C-5 and C-17 mechanic. He showed us the shop where they check out their tools and "bunny suits", then we waited for our Raptor 5 to come pick us up and take us out to the plane. At this rate, we were a hot...and a little sweaty, but nothing I haven't been through before. I had a half a water bottle with warm water in it so I figured I'd be fine.
We get out to the plane, and we get earplugs because some generator thing is so loud that it will burst our ear drums or something. T gives us a tour around the outside of the plan and tells us about all the fuel and cords that make the plane not explode. (: Then...we climb up into the cargo deck! This is where we reached FLIPPIN'HOT status. After a couple minutes there, he took us up into the passenger seating area...SUPER FLIPPIN' AFRICAHOT status....but, I hadn't passed out yet so I was set and ready to go into the rear of the plane and up the T wing, BRING IT ON! So we make it to the back of the plan, like literally, in the tail of the plane and I'm telling you, it was HOTTER THAN HADES! I will never forget that heat, talk about a burning in your bosom! Hot hot hot. But, once in a lifetime experience, so there's now way I'm backing down now!
So in order to get from the tail end, up into the t wing you have to climb some ladders. I hate ladders. Tight spaces- I'll get over it. Heights, as long as I'm strapped in- I'm fine. Ladders- no. Quadruple no. So of course I let all the others sisters go first, then the time came- my turn. After standing at the top of the first ladder for ten minutes, Sister Zeller and Sister Howard started singing my hymns from the bottom. Then, Sister Jolley came down from the top (the next 40' ladder/tunnel I had to crawl up). I had two sisters behind me singing me on, and one sister above me lifting me up. Literally. I had to get from a ten foot ladder, onto a ledge to the next ladder up the tail of the plane. I thought I was going to die. But after some pep talking from Sister Jolley, I DID IT!!!! Gloriously, triumphantly and totally dripping with sweat and smeared with grease. Tour guide T greeted me as I made my way to the top, "Sister Taylor, you're a freakin' champ!" I took some fantastic pictures and as I put my hands up in the air, that's when I knew something was wrong, I was totally shaky. And I thought, "Oh crap, this can't be good".
So I scurried back down the ladders, through the tail, onto the passenger deck and then down to the cargo deck and...crashed. I had to lay down on the ground or I was going to pass out and throw up. And I had no water left. SUPER! But after a couple minutes I'd cooled off and I felt fine. T came back down and told us we has one last stop, the flight deck! I couldn't miss this, that's for sure! So up the ladder I went! We get up there, and everyone's havin' a ball! Trying on oxygen masks, sitting in the pilot's seat and the flight engineers seat and...here it comes again, I feel like i'm going to puke. I was sitting in the seat thinking to myself, "If I stick my head out that window and throw up, will I get puke on the side of the plane? If I get puke on the tarmac, who's going to have to clean it up?" Yes folks, I know, this would only happen to ME. So then I'm like, "T...I think I'm going to throw up..." Back down the ladder and outside we went, because even though it was 95 degrees outside, it was cooler than anywhere in the plane. And I flopped to the ground again. There I was, laying on the ground next to a C-5. All the mechanics working on the plane were laughing at me. I didn't even care. And that ladies and gents is the time I finally made it onto a C-5. #NeverAgain
THEN, on Thursday, on our way to the Wilmington District Meeting, we found it- KRISPY KREME! Finally. Duncan Donuts is getting really old. Super overrated. We each ate two hot donuts in a matter of 60 seconds. It was glorious.
On Saturday we had a lesson with Ashli and Fiona and they prayed in English! They are so prepared and so...perfect! We found a Mormon message about the last week of the Savior's life and His resurrection all in CHINESE! When it was over we asked them what they learned and Ashli said, "God sent us His Son to die for us...because He loves us. He is the Savior of the whole world." TEARS were streaming down my face! These girls could not be more prepared! They came to church again yesterday and next week they are bringing a friend. They go home to China at the end of August, and I don't know how things are going to end up with them, but one thing is for sure, WE'RE TAKING THE CHURCH TO CHINA! I love those girls so much, being a part of teaching them about their Savior and the loving Heavenly Father has strengthened my testimony so much. The simple truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ are real, and life changing.
We have a divine destiny. Our course has already been mapped out by the Savior. We were MADE to succeed, the only thing that can change that is us. We have two choices in life- The Savior, or turmoil. There is no middle ground, there can't afford to be. These are the last days! We have to pick a team and stay the course! And just because we put our foot on the right path doesn't mean that the Lord will smooth it out for us. It isn't meant to be easy, we're meant to learn to rely on Him and not ourselves, or others, or things. Change doesn't need to be hard, you just need to be honest and then commit. We are meant to change. Please don't return home to your Heavenly Father the same way you left Him. Commit to your spiritual CPR, church, prayer and reading- DAILY. If we don't feast daily we will suffer deadening spiritual consequences.
I love you all so much. Thank you for your love and prayers, they are felt and needed. I wouldn't be here without you.
Sister Kadee Elise Taylor
p.s.- I'm not really turning 22 am I? #OldyPants #TurningGrey #iDontKnowAboutYouButImFeelin22