Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Monday November 4, 2013

Monday November 4, 2013

Dear family,

This week has been good. I always forget what has happened by the time Monday comes around. Yesterday my companion helped me remember some of the fun/funny things, so I hope this week will be a little less boring.

First is the earthquake!!! My first earthquake ever!! We were standing outside the church waiting for an investigator. I was leaning against the wall, when all of a sudden I thought, "Wow, this is a strong wind, I can feel the building moving. Wait a minute . . ." It was pretty exciting to be able to feel it. We could only feel the quake for about 5-10 seconds, but apparently it lasted for a minute or two. We were both stoked, because it was a first for both of us, and we ran inside super excited to ask the students in institute if that really was an earthquake. We found the teacher standing fearfully next to a pillar and no one was looking particularly excited. They did find our excitement quite funny!

So this week was Halloween . . . but Halloween isn't really celebrated in Taiwan . . . :( 
I was determined to do something! I woke up Wednesday and decided that we were going to carve pumpkins in English class that night. Ok, so it was really just drawing faces on tiny pumpkins with markers from the Primary closet. It still made me happy to see some Jack-o-lantern faces on pumpkins.

The best part of Halloween was seeing a group of college kids who actually dressed up!  It was funny being the one saying "Wo keyi pai ni de zhao pian ma?" Can I take your picture? Usually we're the ones sticking out.  
Is this xiao3long2bao1 ?

Also for Halloween we set out to  find xiao3long2bao1, something a member had told us was yummy that we have never eaten. We knew there was a shop around the church, and asking around not only led us to the place, but the man bought them for us too! Yes. Being Waiguoren (foreigner) is the best. And then we bought some candy in honor of the holiday, and of course ate all of it that night :)

We also finally ate Agei, Danshui's traditional food. It's actually really good!
Is this Agei???
It's pretty simple, just a big tofu ball with noodles in the middle, but the sauce makes it yummy. The traditional Agei is historic.  Way back when, fisherman would make Agei because it was easy to take out on the boat without getting messy, etc. because the noodles are surrounded by Tofu.

Today was pretty fun too. The XXX family came to Danshui to visit us! They were an amazing family from Zhudong that I love so much. They are the best.  They have this amazing capacity to love. It doesn't really matter what I do or how good I am at this or that, you don't have to earn their love in any way-- they just LOVE. It was pretty fun! We didn't have too much time because we had to go to Taipei to sing, but it was perfect. It was also XXX first time eating gummy worms . . . which she was REALLY reluctant to do . . . so I had to take pictures.

I did push-ups for the first time in a VERY long time. Bad idea!! I was sore for days!!  My companion is pretty good at working out . . . so I'm hoping to get in a little better shape; hopefully it will make riding up all these Danshui hills a little easier.

We met with a girl we'd contacted on the street for the first time Thursday night. First of all we thought she'd fang'd us,stood us up. We ended up sticking around the church for a half an hour (experiencing an earthquake). We realized our phone was having problems, fixed it, and got hold of her.  Then we met with her! I was glad a few things kept us around the church, because it was an amazing lesson.

Actually the lesson wasn't that amazing because I talked too much, but SHE was amazing! We asked why she'd agreed/wanted to meet with us, and she said because she wanted to get to know God. WHOA. But it gets better. When we asked her what it would mean if God really existed, she said she would want to follow him. AAHHH! These people really exist?? Yes, they do. It was super cool. I'm really excited to keep meeting with her.

XXX came to church this week!  It is so hard to get people to come to church. I really hope the gospel can help her, because she needs it. It was cool to see her and JM, the gospel principles teacher, talking after class. XXX was talking to JM a bit about her problems, which had to do with the lesson that was taught, and it really made JM care about her and want to get involved.  We visited  JM and her family after church. She talked to us about XXX and agreed to help us peike XXX lesson next Saturday. She invited us to have it at her house. Yes!  

Finding peike's is SO HARD.  I'm excited about getting-members-involved. Peike's were actually a miracle this week. One night I spent 45 minutes to an hour trying to find a peike for the next day. I called everyone I could think of without success. BUT, another night, after trying really hard with no success, a member called US back and said she could!!  Last night a member called us about something and agreed to peike BOTH of our lessons tonight!! I was SO grateful.

Temple tours was a Book of Mormon day.  We handed out 5 copies of the Book of Mormon, 7 counting the English one we gave Elder Weech and the Spanish one we gave our Recent Convert who is studying Spanish.  We gave one to a man who lives in China; another was a Korean BoM to a man just visiting Taiwan for 5 days. I BELIEVE in the power of the Book of Mormon. Handing out copies of the Book of Mormon is my favorite thing to do.

A couple weeks ago before District meeting the Elders called and asked if we could pick them up some food, because they were running late. However I misunderstood and I only bought two lunches . . . and 4 elders needed food! I felt pretty bad and told them I would buy them pie to make up for it. This week, we came through. Tuesday rolled around and Sister George and I bought an entire cheesecake and brought it to our district meeting. It was a little pricey, but definitely worth the Elder’s reactions!

Training really is wonderful. I can't say that I'm the best trainer ever, I'm definitely not perfect, but I can say that it feels right. And I'm really happy. Needing to take the lead makes me more responsible for what we do together, I'm a lot more motivated to do it and I feel greater satisfaction and involvement in what is done. I'm glad to be a missionary.

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