Thursday, September 25, 2014

One More Day to Revelation

So let me tell you about this week. 

No, there is too much. 

Let me sum up. 

IM GOING TO SEATTLE AT 4 AM TUESDAY. Whoohooo! I am so beyond thrilled. Beyond thrilled. There is no place I'd rather be, even more than Taiwan right now. It's true. Our teachers were so happy that we had a "good attitude". We had to tell them nooo no no no- Its not like that. Being delayed wasn't something we had to overcome to have a good attitude. We are so legitimately happy to serve multiple missions. Plus, how else would I get to go to the two best places in the world? How else would I get to know what it was like to serve stateside and in somewhere as foreign as Taiwan? The Lord is so good to me. This is so much better than I could have planned for myself. 

Most of my district left at 2:00, 3:00, and 4:00am Monday

morning. So that's a little sad. But we'll all be back in the mission home together soon, hopefully in about a month. Maybe for my birthday? Ay ay?


So this week at the Devotional, Elder Scott came. And guess what, I got to say the prayer. I can't remember what in the world I said but people I didn't know said it was a good prayer... I will choose to believe them. I was just praying that I'd be able to say it all in English (how ironic to pray over a prayer) and that I'd be able to use my thees and thous correctly. I really have no idea if I did it right. I also got to sit sort near Elder Scott, and you know what? He's shorter than me. It's surprising. His whole talk was on prayer- about how we need to develop our relationships through prayer. Without it no one is truly converted; They have a testimony but they aren't converted. In true Elder Scott style, he talked about what the feelings and impressions of the spirit felt like. He answered a lot of personal questions for me that I wont go into here, but somehow I got the feeling that his upcoming conference talk will be very similar. 

When we all got new calls

So last Wednesday we all got new mission calls. They told us we'd get new calls maybe Thursday, but probably Friday, but alas they showed up and surprised us Wednesday. Sneaky Travel Office. I think they just like to toy with our emotions. But, we decided we were gunna open them all as a district. So, we came back from lunch and kicked everyone out of our classroom and said a prayer and opened them one by one. Then we let our teachers back into the room and told them all where we are going. 
    Sister Geddes, Ou ZL, and I are going to Seattle. Two are going to Detroit where they will try not to get mugged. Elder Stuart is going to Texas ! Woot Lubbock, where the water tastes like dirt. Tang ZL is going to Cali, Sister Bi and Hong ZL to Portland, Shi ZL to New Hampshire, and Wan ZL/Elder Varvel is going to good Ol'Boise Idaho. 
     I'm really excited to being going with Sister Geddes. I love her. We're really praying we'll get to use Chinese or be near each other to study. I guess we'll find out tomorrow. 

Adventures with Doctors

Ya, I'm just barely not sick. Thursday night was rough. I've visited the doctor twice this week- once of free will and once because Tang and Shi ZL pulled their mean little zone-leader trick on me and made me go. I feel better now though. But guess what! The doctor gave me permission to chew gum in public, especially on the plane. He said if I don't chew gum, my ear infection and blah blah will get a lot worse. Hopefully there aren't too many judgemental people in the airport. I got to go get medicine in the middle of the night Thursday. What a little adventure. Too bad I wasn't coherent enough for it. I also got to opportunity to ride to BYU and go to the bookstore, or the Walgreens here to get medicine and whatever else I wanted. I think the staff here just knows me well enough and pities me. I decided to turn the opportunity to venture off the MTC down, to my companions disappointment. I didnt want to have to resay goodbye to BYU, especially in the middle of the school year. That would not have made me feel healthier. 

Birthdays Galore: 

So this week was Hong ZL's birthday. We asked him what he wanted, and he said he wanted us to just weave Disney quotes into our daily speech all day. Wierd. I did not see that coming from him. But guess what? I have never had a more fun day here. We used things all day long from Disney movies. Like someone asked what we should really get him for his birthday and Bi Jm said, "Oh the usual. flowers, chocolates, promises you don't intend to keep." Then at lunch Bi JM picked up a fork and asked, "What an thingamabob?" "No thanks, I got plenty... but who cares. No big deal. I want more." I wish I could remember some of the funnier ones but there was a LOT of Emporeros New Grove and the funny old guy from Tangled. My favorite moment though was when I walked into the cafeteria with him and shouted at the top of my lungs, "HEYYY, ITS HIS BIRTHDAY!" and everyone yelled. Then I turned to him and said, "Now all of China knows you're here."

5 Final Funny Moments of the MTC: 
  1. So this last week Elder Varvel gets a notice that he has 5 or more packages in the post office. So we all decided to go to the post office at lunch, because man five packages? That's the highlight of our sad little MTC week. So we get there and YUP, 5+ packages. He has so many that he has to carry his boxes on a dolly and his companion has to carry multiple packages too. They are so big that when we stacked them up they were taller than him! And all from his mom! We open them up and.. soup! All packages of ramen soup! Come to find out that his mom thought she sent him ten packages of soup, but instead she sent him ten orders! We've been eating as many bowl of soup as we could stand for days! They are so spicy they clear all our sinuses, but we make each other keep going
  2. Sister Ashby decided to sleep in her Sunday clothes to save time this week.. As a lifestyle choice. She crawls into bed and we were all like, "umm you forgot something." Haha I have no idea why. My companion started beating her with pillows until she would get up and change. ... We've been here too long. 
  3. I had to walk down to the pharmacy this week, so we're walking out the gates and the younger sisters see us and start shouting, "Where are you going? It's not P-day!" I told them that I just couldn't take it anymore! I had had enough! I was walking to Cafe Rio and I'd be back when I was good and ready! And no one was gonna tell me otherwise. [I was overly-dramatic about it that I was sure they knew I was kidding.] I came back 20 minutes later and told them I had a change of heart. That's when I found out there were actually worried and I laughed so hard that someone offered me an inhaler. 
  4. So our newest teacher told us this story. Every day in Taiwan you ride around on your bike and talk to people at stoplights. Lots of times they talk back just because you're an American, and sometimes they completely ignore you because they dont want to talk. One day he pulled up at at stop light and went to tell the man next to him about the gospel. The man just starred at him. He said no words. So he just keeps on sharing his message. Then, the man silently reaches forward and caresses his cheek! Just leaves his hand there! PAUSE. Now you have to understand that my teacher has red hair and sticks out like a sore thumb. Okay PLAY. So the man looks at him and asks" Are you... an American or an angel?" because he had never seen someone with his hair before! Yup. True story. 
  5. This week Sister Training Leader Sister Geddes remarked, "Always great to talk to you Sister Wawro; You never have any problems." "Well," I said. "Actually.. So last night I woke up, and my companion was standing directly over me. it freaked me out, but I couldn't tell if she was sleep walking or awake. I was so freaked out, so I just layed there without moving, with one hand over my face. Then I heard this sound: PTOOEY! And I felt something wet on my hand. I was so horrified at what happened that I sat there frozen, frozen in fear. Eventually she huffed and walked back to bed. I was so shocked and scared of her that I layed in bed until I fell asleep. When I woke up this morning and I remember and was so horrified that I frantically left to go wash my hands off."       Sister Geddes stared at me in disbelief and then tried to start to give me some advice. I busted out laughing and had to tell her no part of that story was even remotely true. We had a good laugh. 

The MTC Stereotype

So look here- people say the MTC is is like prison. I get that. Ironically, the English-speakers who stay here about a week are the ones who feel the most sorry for the people who stay here a long time, and often the English-speaking missionaries have the worst attitude. Sister Geddes and I were talking today about how people always send us mail saying, "You do it at the MTC! Just endure to the end!" We always laugh because people think we're dying or something.

 I know we've had to entertain ourselves a little to make it fun, but the MTC has been the best experience. I was looking at all my goals, especially my language goals this week, and I was surprised to realize I had accomplished them all. I made a plan, I did it, and the Lord blessed me far far beyond my normal capacity to learn Chinese. It was a really tender moment for me.  It makes me sad the MTC has a bad rep, because it has been such a great time in my life for me, and for many of us. It's also been a time of incredible spiritual building, which I don't write about in detail much but is very real. The experience here has been exactly what we made it: Wonderful. 

Remember: "Attitude is half the battle"

Now pictures: 
This fellows are singing in Devotional. Oh I forgot to tell you! I sang in the farewell devotional Sunday. This old Senior missionary came up and thanked me and started crying. It was so touching. He was so humble and so sweet. I wish I had to opportunity to know him. But- here's the other's in my district practicing from the other main MTC devotional where they sang. It was incredible. Told you my district was talented. 

So this is how Hong ZL cleans... Cleanliness is no joke people. 

Tang ZL got a master key ring for his falshcards.. like a janitor. And then hiked his pants this high for a picture. Perfect. 

HONG ZL's BIRTHDAY!! I have to include more picture of him this week because I found out his mom takes the pictures of him from my blog because he hasn't sent any home. Poor mom! Don't worry Sister Redding, I got you covered. 

Going to seattle!

Sister Geddes and I to Seattle!

Here's all of us at breakfast. 

These four- every time a someone would walk by, on of them would say "lemon tree" and they'd all stamp their foots in sync and cross their legs to the other side. 

This is four square. In its entirety. 

This is what a proper serve looks like... Check out that form. 

See the focus on his face? Ya. Not for children. 

Also, how scenic. Always nice to look at the mountains after you've been slaughtered in foursquare, so you can have a few moments to collect yourself. 


so we had an ugly shirt day, and took this photo. THEN Everyone changed out ofthe ugly shirts but me??? What is this betrayal!! I had to walk around ugly all day by myself!

This move is called the Primantis 

This is Wu JieMie/Lao Shi. She is our Taiwanese teacher. She is awesome. Also, her Chinese is really good... imagine that. ;) 

This is Wu JieMie/Lao Shi. She is our Taiwanese teacher. She is awesome. Also, her Chinese is really good... imagine that. ;) 

I leave my camera alone for 5 minutes and I come back to find them all posing for an album cover... #thestruggleisreal

This is my district. As a whole. Turns out we never took pictures as a group before now. 

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