Friday, November 25, 2011

MTC Letter #4 - November 22nd, 2011

Okay, so in honor of everyone who loves to hear about me wanting to die because I accidentally start laughing and can't stop (seriously trying to be better) - So, my district leader calls on me to say the prayer before class (we're with our Taiwanese teacher, Sister Fan, who I adore) and I started praying, and I kept stumbling over my words and messing this sentence up, so I started laughing a tiny bit, like, "geez", but then I started laughing a ton and then I couldn't finish the dang prayer because I couldn't speak, I was laughing too hard. After nudging Sister Winters, she finally took one for the team and finished my prayer for me. It was terrible. After the prayer, Sister Fan asked me, "Does speaking Chinese make you laugh?' I was like "Not usually!" (unless we're singing a fast hymn - talk about stumbling over words). And Elder Stallings said, "I've never met someone who couldn't finish their prayer because they were laughing too hard." Then Sister Fan started tellnig us about how on her mission, they taught someone who would always laugh when they taught her and then she told us that she had a mental disability. Thanks a lot, Sister Fan. Then she was telling us about how one time on her mission (she served in Taichung, Taiwan), they were praying with an old woman, who was a convert, who used to be Buddhist, and the way she was praying and the things she was saying sounded like traditional Buddhist chants or something. Sister Fan said she was trying so hard not to laugh, but because her companion couldn't speak teh language fluently, she didn't pick up on it at all. That's probably why Heavenly Father called me to learn such a hard language so that I won't be able to understand 80% of what goes on, especially the funny/awkward moments.

Also, sometimes when we learn a new grammar principle, Sister Fan divides sisters vs. elders and whoever can extend the most commitments wins. We all love this game, and it usually ends up with us extending commitments like, "Will you be willing to prepare for the second coming?" and other things that investigators definitely do not need to commit to.

This week when Sister Winters and I practiced teaching natives in TRC, the first women were from China and Taiwan, and they were so nice, but one of them talked so fast, I thought I was going to die. The second man we talked to was wearing a Beijing Olympics shirt and had one of those mountain-man hats, with the long racoon tail hanging down. I instantly liked him and I liked him even more once he started talking because he talked much slower than the other women. Listening to people talk always stresses me out, especially when you think you understand what they are saying and it turns out that they actually said something completely different. Our new favorite thing is to psyche the elders out, by acting freaked out when we leave a teaching appointment, whispering towards them, "That was a toughie! Goood luck." Actually, we did that in all seriousness and then realized that we liked the elders' reactions much, that we might as well keep it up. Man, I sound like the worst district member/sister missionary ever. I really am nice to them and Sister Winters and I are always trying to make sure they're all feeling okay and not too stressed out.

Oh, and since I mentioned cleaning last week, I'll mention cleaning again. This week, we had to clean the drinking fountains with poision. Seriously, it was this bright red stuff that kills AIDS, causes eye corrision if it contacts your eyes, and if it gets on your skin, you have to run your skin under water for 15-20 minutes. Yeah. Told you our cleaning jobs are no walk in the park.

Sister Winters is ultra talented and is constantly getting roped into doing musical numbers with people in our zone. This week, she played violin with a flutist and this elder in our zone accompanied them. This elder plays piano like a dream (apparently he got accepted to Juliard), but also a total diva about his piano pieces. They were done practicing, and the girls were like, "yeah, I feel good about this piece" and then that elder was like, "Um... my solos are just way too slow and boring. Seriously. I can't even stand it. I can't handle it." So then he cut all his slow solos out of the piece. Diva alert.

And this week, 2 of my favorite elders to eaves drop on and talk to (they're a total dream-team, I'll tell more about them later) were standing by this window and they looked all sad and depressed, so Sister Winters asked them why they looked so sad, and Elder Soule (he talks and acts really dramatically) was like, "We're sooo stressed out! Our investigator was high the last time we taught her!"
me: "Like pretending to be high?"
S: "No, she really was! She had just had a surgery and fell asleep twice during our lesson! She doesn't even remember what we taught her and we don't know what to teach her next!"
His comp, Elder M: "If this was a real investigator, we would've dropped her weeks ago!"
S: "Noo! Don't say that!! We looove Sister Wu! We're just stressed out!!"
So funny.

Okay, also, last thing - this week I watched some Joseph Smith restoration movie and it totally reinvigorated my testimony of the gospel and Joseph Smith. Lately, I feel stressed about the hardness of a mission, and how tired I always am, but watching that made me remember how much Joseph Smioth and the early saints did for the gospel, and that I can definitely do this little year and a half to share the gospel with others after so many have done so much for me to have the gospel. The gospel makes more and more sense to me all the time. Love it.

Sorry so rushed, always.

Love you all so, so much.

Love,

Natalie

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