Monday, December 5, 2011


GREETINGS FROM OWENSOUND CANADA! One of the members of the ward told me President Monson told his father that this is the coldest place on Earth, so straight from the mouth of a prophet. And if you require 2 or more witnesses, THIS IS THE COLDEST PLACE ON EARTH! Actually, so far it's not bad, although the previous sisters were 4 hours late in picking us up because of the snow, but it's all melted since then. We've been promised there will be lots of extra snow this year too, because the lake is warmer than normal, so awesome.

Also, this area is GIANT! you can drive at least 45 minutes in any direction and be in the ward boundaries, and if you go very top to very bottom it takes about 2 and a half hours. The members are from 25 different cities! So one of the big problems in this area is staying within the alloted 1800 kilometers each month (this whole metric system really throws me off so I don't actually know how far that is, but the Sisters before went over by about 200). 

So there were Elders here for about 8 years, then the area closed for a transfer and the Sisters before us opened it up. However, they both had some serious health issues, one actually went home a transfer early due to it, and so they were both instructed that this was to be their last area so take it easy and just do what they can to prepare for us. So we're basically starting from scratch, I don't know if we're technically white washing but we practically are. It's hard, I'm SO grateful for Sister Tuisku. I love her by the way, she is from Finland but we have weird connections! Her brother is currently serving in the Houston South Mission, her cousin is in what used to be the Toluse France Mission (sorry if I spelled that wrong Melissa), and her brother served in the Denver Colorado South mission! Crazy eh? But President Scott was not lying, she is incredible, she always says "I love my mission, my mission saved my life!" She's so cute and such a hard worker, super obedient which I love. We pray and hug before we ever leave the apartment, and pray before leaving the car, she has such a great testimony of prayer.

 So lies I was told about Canada:

-People don't say eh: True not everyone says it at the end of every sentence, BUT EVERYONE SAYS IT, I have to try so hard not to laugh. And some people do end just about every sentence with eh, maybe in the city areas it's less common but here in the northern country it's rampant.

-Americans exaggerate how they say about: NO, the Canadiuan accent is very very real! EVERYONE says out and about as stereotyped.

-You'll never need or hear french in Toronto: True, I don't need it, but almost everyone speaks French! They even have a French Immersion option for elementry school.

 Fun facts about my mission:

-Most of the population comes from 98 different countries!

-There are 8 mission languages I believe, including Farcee (spelling?) which is not taught in the MTC. You're called English speaking and then the mission president calls you when you arrive to learn Farcee. One of the Elders who came with us got called to do so, in the MTC he was in the disrict right next door. SO COOL!
- On the western side of the mission you can make out the form of an elephant on a map, the tail and ears go into Lake Huron (I think? Whichever lake we're by anyways). Owen Sound is directly on the butt, under the tail. Basically the entire butt is my current area.

I think sometimes I forget I'm in Canada though, the first time I went to Walmart I paid with cash cuz it was like $1, and the cashier gave me back purple bills as change. I stared at it so long, by the time I said thank you she was giving me a super weird look.

 Okay I think that's basically everything. I have no investigators yet, though we're hoping to start teaching some nonmember family members of ward members. We think the work here is mostly going to be less actives and member referals, there are alot of churches in this area so people are not interested in talking to missionaries on the street at all. We do OYM still (open your mouth, basically we walk a street and talk to every single person we see, it's terrifying and I'm not good at it!) but actually tracting hasn't seemed like a good idea so far. In fact our district leader challenged everyone not to tract any doors this week, so our instincts are dead on so far! But I love this area so much, the ward is like a giant family. They drive like an hour to get to church, so they love being there and everyone's best friends. It's awesome, my bishop rocks, my ward mission leader is amazing! This area is so different then I ever expected my first area to be like, and it's going to be aLOT of heard work, but I already love it. Love you all, I've got to go before this computer kicks me off and I lose this email! There are letters on your way! Love you!

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