Ohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh so much to say right now, and I'm shaking a little bit from adrenaline because I just had the best experience about 10 minutes ago and I'm not over it yet. Whoo, gotta calm down....
First of all, my companion is FANTASTIC, and she's another great addition to my collection of international companions! So along with Finland, England/Australia, America, and Canada, I now have a companion from SPAIN! Sister De Ruvo is from a town near Milan, and is very clear she is NOT from the south hahaha. Her English is great, her dad served a mission in Utah so she's been speaking it her whole life, but I still get to laugh at her- I mean help her occasionally. She thinks I'm crazy though, one of her first questions to me was if I really commit people to be baptized in the first lesson. I told her "Every time!" and she gave me a devastated look. She keeps saying she has an Italian mindset and hates 90% of what I do, but she's a good sport and does it anyways. She is a great teacher, the Lord is keeping me in my place because she's been out a week and English is her second language, but she teaches better than me. Fact. It's gonna be a good transfer!
Best story of her so far: I told her to just tear something and she asked what tear meant. So I said, "you know, rip, cut" and mimed tearing something. And she said : "Oh, you mean like 'It's tearing up my heart when I'm with you!'" I died laughing, from now on I'm just going to sing NSync and Backstreet Boys whenever she needs to know a word.
Okay, here's my AWESOME experience I just had. We've been fighting all day to get on a computer at the library, because we have to go home and clean (ugh, more explanation about that later!) So we've come to the library 3 times and all of them have been taken, so we went and did something else and came back. So the 3rd time we went to ask about reserving computers, and I'm seriously unhappy at this point because I'm realizing I'm not writing any letters today, so we're standing in line for the desk and I say something to Sister De Ruvo and just call her Sister. So the man behind me laughs and asks if she's really my sister, so I explain how we're missionaries and that's our title. So he asks what denomination, we say the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, he asks if we have another name and I'm like uh oh...Yes, the mormons. Sure enough, he gives us that "oh you have lots of wives" look and goes quiet. But then he asks if we believe we all have the potential to have the same divinity as Christ. I'm super surprised, it's not a normal question I get asked in a library, so we start talking about the plan of salvation and how our purpose in coming to Earth is to eventually become like God. We finally reserved computers for half an hour later, he asks the front desk his question, and all 3 of us sit down. He came to the library to check out a book about the physiology of spirituality, so he tells us how people now think someone's crazy if the say they have a vision so he's studying the science behind spiritual experience, then he asks what we believe about prophets. So we teach him about how God always calls prophets and about the great apostasy after Christ's death and about Joseph Smith having a vision and being called to be a prophet. Coolest moment- as I was reciting the first vision from memory he started grinning at me, and when I finished he said "That really means alot to you. I can see it in your face." So I bore my testimony of how much it means to me to know God loves me enough to still call prophets, and I just beamed at him the rest of the conversation. We taught him the restoration and the plan of salvation in 30 minutes, we're going to see him on Thursday and he's coming to church on Sunday. HUZZAH! P-day miracles! I'm seriously so happy, I need a nap.
Thank you for all the birthday wishes, Mom that email of everyone that wrote on my facebook almost made me cry I was so happy. Yesterday I didn't say a word to anyone, Sister De Ruvo almost killed me when Sister Scott (my mission president's wife) called and wished me a happy birthday because I hadn't reminded her. (I told her but like 3 days before) But it's just awkward to tell a bunch of people you don't know that they should be treating you special (even though they should) especially since I'm training, so all the attention right now is on Sister De Ruvo so extra awkward. Anyways, it was still a good day but I REALLY appreciated all the birthday wishes today. I love everyone :) Best part though is definitely cory- "She's going to kill me!" Yes, I am.
I'm already in LOVE with Woodstock. It reminds me alot of Owen Sound, but it's a little bigger of a town and a smaller congregation. The branch here is amazing though, and they've never had sister missionaries here (at least not in anyone's memory) so we're extra loved.There were no investigators when we cam in, but we were immediately given some amazing referals. One is the fiancee of a less active who asked the bishop a few weeks ago if it was possible he could be baptized, and the Bishop said he needed to wait for some missionaries. Another is a man who came to church on Sunday with a friend who told us he's just been looking for more in his life and searching different churches. We've also had a few former investigators that we've contacted who said we can come by, so the work is taking off fast! This week is going to be really exciting. It's also fun here because my favorite zone leader, Elder Bean, is my zone leader again, so I plan to have this zone wrapped around my finger by the end of this transfer. Win!
Yeah it seems like white washing and replacing Elders is the theme of my mission, it is a little crazy that's all I've ever done but I don't think that's a sign of my abilities as a missionary. President Scott really likes to white wash it seems, half of the trainers this transfer are also white washing and there were probably like 25 of us. And he white washed at least 10 areas the transfer before too! So while I'm a little unusual to have done it so often, it's not too far above the norm.
The apartment here was an adventure though....It should be the nicest apartment ever, it has a balcony, a pool and jacuzzi (which would be awesome if we could use), a weight room (again, awesome if only it was open early enough), underground parking, a giant living room- sweet apartment! But, it's also had Elders living here for 50+ years. And the last set of missionaries that were here had an emergency where one went home and so the just pulled the missionaries out, so it's been sitting untouched for a month. There were dirty dishes in the sink, hair in the drains, broken glass in the kitchen and balcony....It was foul! We opened the door and Sister De Ruvo almost went home haha we had to SCRUB the bathroom with bleach that night before bed in order to shower or use the bathroom. And someone had hung a picture of President Gordan B. Hinkley right in front of the toliet so he stared at you- that was taken down fast. So we've been sterelizing it slowly over the week during meal times, and today we're shampooing the carpet. Ugh.
Unfortunately I have no time for pictures, but next week I'll send you some of my Italian baby and the dreadful apartment. Love you all, thanks again for all the mail! I'm write some real letters to people soon, I promise. Mom I haven't goten my packages yet, I must have just missed them at the office, but the ZLs are going to the office next week so I'll get them then. Thank you for trying though. Talk to you all later!