Oh my goodness, not only was it a crazy week for me because it was the first week in the field, but for my entire mission. Everyone keeps telling me that our group will be famous for being the newbies in the midst of the storm of what happened. Pretty fun. Let me tell ya what happened – from the beginning!
LEAVING THE MTC:
Oh man it was hard! A few sisters and I got up at 4 am to say goodbye to the German missionaries that left, and I almost cried! I LOVE THOSE GUYS! Then we went down to the kitchen and had some cereal all alone in the cafeteria with just us four, in the dark… quite fun! Then it was our turn to leave and saying goodbye to President and Sister Bunker was hard, but we all promised to road trip to Las Vegas and visit them! The drive to Scotland was gorgeous and I was loving the rolling hills and SHEEP WERE STINKING EVERYWHERE!!!! But then we got to the city.
ARRIVING IN SCOTLAND:
Edinburgh (pronounced Ehd-in-brah) is such a gorgeous city. They have stone building EVERYWHERE! We got to the mission home and the assistants to the President welcomed us and tossed us in a van!
We went to the giant hill that overlooks the entire city (look it up ITS INCREDIBLE) it’s called Arthur’s Seat.
ARTHUR’S SEAT/ PRATT’S HILL:
President Macdonald (Mission President over Scotland/Ireland) took us up there with his wife and the assistants. It was beautiful and so dang windy! I almost got knocked off my feet a few times! And my hair was all up in my face. The wind literally tore out my braid – all good. Up there, we prayed alone and made a goal and a commitment with the Lord for our mission and it was one of the most amazing experiences ever.
WHERE WILL I BE ASSIGNED:
We got back to the mission home and had lunch and got to meet all the trainers! We had no idea which one we would be ours, but it was still so fun! They took us upstairs and we all had a meeting about the mission. While that was going on, president would pull us out one by one and talk with us. He’s so amazing! Once he finished he came into the room and said, “I bet you’re all excited to find out where you will be going! Well that’s not going to happen… We just got a call saying that if you don’t have a Garda card, you are not allowed in Ireland.” (A Garda Card is a particular immigration card). All of us sisters knew we were going to go to Ireland because all the sister trainers were from Ireland, but now, almost all of us couldn’t! And a lot of the missionaries in Ireland were now not allowed to be there, SO they had to basically evacuate all the missionaries without a Garda card (pretty much everyone) out of the Republic of Ireland. They had to find places for all of us to go in Scotland, so the President and the mission leaders have had a really, really, REALLY long week.
Because of the iffy situation, temporary companionships were made so I have spent the past few days with a lot of different companions. Sister Irving (an STLT basically trains the trainers), Sister Curtis (another STLT), Sister Belliston (a Mandarin speaking sister here in Edinburgh), Sister Oren (Sister Belliston’s companion), Sister Cox (she came out with me), and Sister Johnson (also came out with me) but sister Johnson has a Garda card so they shipped her off to Ireland as fast as they could!
WHERE I SLEEP:
I have been sleeping in 3 different places! The mission home the first few nights, a flat with one companionship of sisters, and another flat where the other sisters stay. It’s been…. interesting. Just a lot of couch sleeping and sleeping bags… and a lot of borrowing things. Plus, it’s never just me, there are usually at least 3 other sisters that have been hoping around too.
WHAT I HAVE BEEN DOING IN THE MEAN TIME:
I have gotten to know the streets of Edinburgh and the people SO WELL! If you look on google maps, Bruntsfield is a place I’m usually walking and the meadows so if you’re curious to see my view, there it is. And what we do is just stop and talk to people, ALL DAYYY LOOONG! I really love it actually. The people here are so fun to talk to and it is so diverse here! I actually don’t really notice accents anymore because there are so many different kinds! It’s just a new one every time you talk to somebody. Fun fact, I have walked about an average of 10 or more miles a day. Super fit.
So, this is the town where I will serve! I finally got my trainer and her name is Sister Westbroek! She is such an angel and I’m so excited! Galashiels is in the country near the borders of England! They have a really small congregation there, only about 10 people come every week so Sister Westbroek and I will be busy when we get down there! But since it’s the country and the houses are so far apart, we most likely get a car! But we will still walk a ton! We already met a small family that goes to church up here in Edinburgh once a month just so their daughter can be with other kids here because there aren’t any down in Galashiels… GAH! We will work on finding more families!
FIRST SUNDAY IN THE FIELD:
So dang amazing. One, I just love church and I love being able to sit down and just listen to someone else talk. Also, it was really fun to have people come up to me and say “Oh! You’re the new sister!” and to introduce myself. Really cool!
ADJUSTING TO THE SCHEDULE:
You guys… it is brutal. There is never a moment when you are not doing something. Unless it is eating. I love meal times because we go out in the meadows at the park and just lay on the grass and eat a sandwich and relax for a bit. So nice. But it is constant studying, constant walking, and constant talking. Never stops…. But I really love it!
LOVE YOU ALL!!!!! Next week hopefully I’ll be in Gala!
oh Aye: oh yes
I dinea kin: I don’t know
days without any rain:
like 6!!! It’s been such good weather!!! It only rained today!!!