Thursday, August 9, 2012

Avignon 7

Wow, lots of questions this week, hope I can remember all of them
    Gap is not in our area (mine and elder call's) I went there for exchanges in the past because I was with the district leader, and gap is in our district.  It is a really small town made up of retired old people and middle school students. Yes it is in the Alps, and it is very pretty.  There is an equipe of elders there, and a branch of about 20 active members.  We talk on the phone with our district leader to know when we are doing exchanges, then we can buy the train tickets ourselves or call the mission office who will buy them online and we can pick them up in the gare... er trainstation.  Normally we only stay for 24 hours, and one night, so we just carry some extra clothing and toothbrush in a bag with us.
    French hot dogs are nothing compared to american ones.  There is only one brand (that I have seen) and they are all the really cheap small ones, but ça va.  I think it is the heat here, but I really haven't been eating as much.  i am not sick or anything, I am eating don't worry, but I rather would just eat a little salad and water than hotdogs or a sandwich or something. I am back on the loosing weight track, down to 230ish pounds!
    No I am not district leader, it has now gone to the Gap elders... that will make exchanges interesting, because Gap is about a three hour train ride from every other ville in our district.
    We got lost once yesterday, but that actually led to a cool miracle that I'll tell you about in the day to day
    Yes we have a "lecture CD" and I love the CDs!  They came just in time because Elder Call has no music unlike all my other compagnons, and it is great to listen to during lunch and dinner etc.
    Quansah is amazing!  He is getting the priesthood next week, and normally should be blessing the sacrament for the first time the week after!  We taught him about temples recently and he really wants to go!  Really he is the most prepared person I have ever met, he is so Awesome, I hope you get to meet him some day.
     I got Elder Call hooked up with a KEbab his first day here ha ha.  Though, I think I might be done with them for a while.  As I mentioned above, I don't feel like eating heavy stuff like that.
     The theatre festivale is done, and there is practically no one in the streets anymore.  I guess avignon is still a pretty bussling city, kind of, but compared to the festivale, it feels pretty empty now.  Thank goodness they got some people to cut down all the flyers from everywhere, I was worried they were just going to be left up until they rotted off, but they are mostly all gone now.
 Day by day
Monday:we walked around centre ville, and got Elder call moved in.  Then all our rdvs fell throgh, so we ported for three hours... fun
Tuesday:  Spent the morning studying (new missionaries take an additional hour of companion study and an hour of language study, that makes four hours of study a day... lots) with a break to talk to a morrocan who loves america, but was happy being muslim.  Then we saw Fr. Jeunehomme.  I think he is ready to come back to church, now we just need someone to take him, but everyone is on vacation... it make s things very frustrating at times.
Wednesday:  Study, porteing, saw Olivier, who said he would come to church this week (he didn't), taught english class and taught Quansah about the temple and priesthood afterward.  He is so great!
Thursday:  Took a trip to Carpentras (mark that one off the map, it is just east and a little north of avignon)  We worked there from 1h30 in the afternoon, to 7h25... with no success at all the whole day until 7h15 when we talked to one last family on the road who just so happened to want to see us again, and they gave us their number and address, and they come to the city where our church is often, so they already know where it is!  Miracles only come to pass after a trial of your faith.  that was a really hard day, but the end made it worth it
Friday:  Passed Olivier (a different one than the one before, but also a less active)  he answered the door, and we chatted, but he didn't invite us in..; sad.  then was our great day of less active passbacks, we passed about 8 less actives... and none of them answered. . . another ver long day, but I called an old ami and she set up a rdv with us for today (monday) so that was cool and our miracle for the day.
Saturday:  We worked a lot in the pontet again... nothing... lots of porting and nothing.. long hard day
Sunday:  Church was awesome, Elder Merservy, who had just finished his mission a week ago, came to our branch with his family as they were visiting the mission etc. I was able to translate for half of his family and a british couple (he translated for the rest of his family).  Elder Merservy's family is really cool, and we talked with them a bit after church.  He served here in Avignon a year ago, his dad served in Avignon 31 years ago, and there was another visiter who served in Avignon 20 years ago.  Like a little reunion or something.  I realized that talking with Americans is different than talking with French people, obviously it was in english and not in french, but I don't know...  there was something else.  Anyway that was interesting.
    Later that day we got lost while looking for another less active.  We had just passed another one (not there) and we were trying to knock on at least 10 doors before going to the next one.  We did the 10 (nothing)  Then I suggested we shoudl finish the block because there were only two houses left.  The guy at the first door lets us in, and brings his 12 year old son into the room, and tells us they were just talking about the mormons yesterday.  This guy Casstien has had quite a few tragedies in his life recently, and also he has some weird ideas about God, but he is very sincere and cool.  It was a really cool spiritual experience, and he wants us to come again, so we'll see where that goes.  He also humbled me in my French, because he was using tons of vocabulary I had never heard of before ha ha.
    So this week has probably been the hardest on the mission, but we had some really cool miracles.  I am still happy and still ready to work... we just have no amis, they have all gone and gotten baptised!  anyway, I love you all.  I'm glad the family reunion went well.  It is crazy the next transfer I will pass my year mark!  It literally only feels like I have been in France a couple months.  It is just shooting by, even this week which was really 'long' has gone by incredibly fast.  I am trying to cherish every moment. 
    It is wierd mixed feelings I have now, because I LOVE my mission, but it is pretty dang hard, so at the same time, I am glad it is going by fast, but I also don't want it to end.  GRR  I'll just live every moment I'm here the best I can, and then when I come home, I'll live every moment the best I can over there.
One last thing, I really would perfer If I cam home before we all went to France, that way i could be released and everyting.  Elder Merservy's stake president wouldn't release him fully , but he still could wear normal clothes and go swimming and stuff... I don't know, it is a weird inbetween state he is in, and he said he wouldn't wish it on any missionary ha ha.
I love you all again! keep the faith! go to the temple.  Did you see the new batman movie?  I heard about the shooting in the theater in colorado, that is really a shame, has it scared you away from going?  See you ;;... talk to you next week!

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