I can't believe it's already been 6 weeks since coming to Midwood!! It used to blow my mind that people could meet and marry their spouse in like a month, but I kinda see where they're coming from now! You can fall in love with people so fast! I love the people in this Ward and the investigators we are teaching SO MUCH. It's been a crazy last week of the transfer but I think we were able to do everything we needed to.
We spent our P-day in Williamsburg, AKA hipsterville. We went to Brooklyn Charm and I got like 50 million stickers for my collection haha *nerd alert.* we did a lookup that night but she wasn't there and it took an hour to get there and an hour to get back so that's that! Tuesday we had back-to-back lessons from 10 till 9:30 and skipped lunch and dinner. Not a good idea. Wednesday we had more lessons, District Meeting, and we took a member to the temple. Whenever we take a member to the temple the stress level goes up by like a thousand. The session was at 6:15 and it was 5:45. The member texted us and said she was just leaving her house which is like an hour away....awk. So we called President and he said we could go to the later session which would get us home at like 11 so we waited and waited for the member. She finally got there and everything went good, it was a very good time and so special to see her face, she really love it. It is always worth the stress to get to the temple because of the peace we can feel there.
Thursday we did some online training for our iPads which included watching the district again and some other boring videos. Then we got an email stating that the software is corrupted and all the missionaries in test missions would have to redo the online trainings we had previously done. Haha! That night we had correlation at our Ward mission leader's house. He is Filippeano and probably my favorite person here. He is the essence of hysterical. Anyways there is us and 2 sets of elders so he made us this big pot of rice soup stuff that was scorching hot. After we ate it me and my comp started to feel sick. Just another day for us haha when have we not been sick this transfer? We had the bag of 3 leftover containers of soup and I was trying to tie it shut but one of the containers fell out and splattered all over their super nice kitchen. We went into panic mode. We motioned for one of the elders to distract the member, and his daughter helped us wipe up the mushy rice, mop and dry the floor. The member still doesn't know haha.
We got on one bus and it took us halfway home but when we got off to transfer the second bus never came so we started walking....we ended up walking the whole way home! Just as we walked into our apartment the bus that was supposed to come passed by. Oh side note: everyday you have a wake up call that you're in New York, but some days they are more jolting than others. As we were walking home we heard "elders!" So we turned around to see a nice lady and she started talking to the 6 of us. She explained how she grew up in Utah and was no longer a member of the church. Elder Choi gave her a card with the address of the church on it just as another woman who looked like her daughter walked out of the convenience store we were standing in front of. "Hi honey." Was the first thing the lady said. It must be her daughter right? As the second woman approached the one we were talking to introduced her as her wife. By now we are all pretty good at hiding our shock when stuff like this happens, but there was def a pause in the air. We graciously said goodbye and were on our way *quickly* haha.
Friday was a bit rough because of the whole food poisoning thing so we didn't get to work as much as we had hoped to. Saturday we were feeling absolutely terrible and decided that this had to be the flu, probably given to us by one of the families we visited or at the hospital. We finally got up the strength to go out around 2 'o clock and as soon as we got to our appointment we decided we had better go back before Sister Christensen threw up all over New York. On the bright side I read lots of good conference talks! I've had enough of hospitals and sickness and staying in the pad but I've kind of come to terms that this is the germ-iest city and I need to deal with it haha.
Ok can we just take a few moments and appreciate how weird New York is? I cannot even handle how many crazy things I see in one day. I don't even notice half of them anymore. People-watching on trains and busses is the truth when all is said and done. Even just listening to people's conversations is the funniest thing alive. My favorite is listening to some ghetto sophomores on the bus talk about their high school drama. Except it's not just drama, it usually sounds like WWIII is about to go down in East New York. Like people here get in major fights all the time! I love watching cat fights I think it's hysterical. One girl pulls of the other girls wig and then all hell breaks loose. Anyways I want to just video it but you really have to come visit to get the full effect. Sometimes I don't even feel like this is America. We walk down the street and no one is speaking English and people are wearing turbans or whatever the heck those things are and we are the only white people in sight. Murica. I love it. Oh and fast Sunday here is the worst thing ever because the whole city smells like food and everywhere you go there's food. Food food food. That's probably why we always get so many blessings on Fast Sunday is because there's so much temptation.
Sunday was so great. We had a regional broadcast from SLC and Elder Hales and Anderson spoke to us. They spoke a lot about the atonement and about living what we believe and sharing it. It was such a spiritual meeting. A girl from Oxford, England was visiting and I had a nice talk with her. Afterwards we had a baptism for Marcel. It was probs the most awkward baptism I've been to in a while, just because the guy who was conducting didn't have anything to do while they were changing out of their baptismal clothes so he called on me and my comp to teach everyone about the restoration. We took about 1 minute cause obvi you don't want to go into depth in that situation, and then we just stood there awkwardly so I was like "let's sing some songs!" So we sang like 4 hymns and then they finally finished changing. It was great haha. We were still sick and afterwards they had hatian food and some lady pretty much forced us to eat the fried bananas so we were dying and went home and threw up some more before our appointments that night. By the end of the night we felt a lot better and today we are doing pretty good. As long as no one makes us eat for a few days we should be fine.
Something I have been studying this week is Enduring to the End and the Plan of Salvation. I see people who are about to finish their missions and they are so strong and stalwart in the gospel! I admire them and look up to them. How are we motivated to be our best? On a mission, at work, within our families, in our wards? I think one way is staying in the moment. We can't live for all the things we want to happen. We must be where we are and work from there. I was randomly thinking about the bell curve (at least I remember something from college). I had the thought that In the gospel of Jesus Christ there should be no bell curves. We should never have a "highest point" only to regress to where we started. Because of the atonement we can always move upward. There shouldn't be any swan dives into Babylon. I love the scripture "Use boldness, but not overbearance; and also see that ye bridle all your passions, that ye may be filled with love; see that ye refrain from idleness." Sometimes it is hard to hold ourselves back from the things we want. I have learned that the best way to bridle passions is to let someone else take the reins. I think of Carrie singing "Jesus Take the Wheel" but I think this is a little deeper than that. We don't just quit and let him handle all our problems. We look to His gospel as a way to overcome the things we struggle with. "Refrain from idleness" is a pretty good motto to live by. Anyways I sound like a preacher by now but I do want to say I am so grateful for the restored gospel and especially for the atonement which allows us to be so much more than we could ever be on our own. I love being a member of this church and I love being a missionary even more. Thank you all for your support and love, I am grateful to have such an amazing family!
1. Some classy graffiti
2 & 3. The temple! This humidity though...the lions mane is real.
4. Met some cute sisters at the temple(:
5. Love this family!