I've noticed that a bunch of people here have scars on their faces from car/scooter accidents. Freaky, right? Also sometimes people take their huge dogs on their scooters with them. This morning, I saw a lady with a huge golden retriever sitting on the feet part of the scooter. Also, sometimes people let their birds hang out on the front of the scooter. And they still drive with the bird on their scooter. It's crazy and cool.
There's so many good things about being on a mission - all facets of being on a mission. Lately we love making fun of Elder Nelson for how awkward he'll be when he gets home. The other day he said to me, "That blazer is nice." I've been eating these dried fish skins that are sitting on my desk. They're not that good - it's like eating pretzels, you eat them just because they're there. We discovered divine coconut milk juice boxes this week.
This week was really good. Running out of time, so I gotta write FAST.
Monday. Hiking and dinner at most hipster member's house. The Wan's. He cuts house and his wife used to be an artist. Their house is COOL. The floor is like big stone slab tiles. Their kitchen table is old, rustic wood. Taiwanese people are so funny because they always complain about how naughty their kids are, even when they're the best. They said they hoped their little five -year-old would be more normal when he grows up, but he's so cute and awesome right now. We played a game with them where we give them 2 options and they have to choose which one is more important. Their little boy kept choosing books over all other options, and then he choose all the church things. Aka, all the right answers. His parents were acting so shocked and were so happy with his choices. It was funny.
Tuesday night I went on exchanges for like an hour to help her meet an investigator- Megan, the American. Megan's car got a flat tire, so we last minute biked to her house. She lives at the top of this huge hill. We had fun booking it up the hill, getting lost and booking it up higher than we had to and then finally making it to her house. Had a little meeting with her and then called the district leader to say we were going to be home late, but ultimately biking faster than I ever have in my life, safely weaving in and out of traffic, and making it home in like SEVEN MINUTES. We were so proud of ourselves.
Wednesday. I feel like we see a lot of miracles from just talking to everyone. The other day, we had a plan to slowly make our way over to a former's house, talking to everyone we saw on the roadside. We ended up not having nearly enough time to make it to that former's house, but it was at least a plan and destination, so we decided to at least go that way, talking to everyone. I love talking to everyone, because it makes you do just that, talk to everyone, even though you might initially judge some people and wouldn't normally stop to talk to them. For example, we were biking in a more rural area (love this area!) and there was an older man - a farmer - in the field next to us. We stopped to talk to him. He's retired, but doesn't want to sit around watching TV, so he works on this farm. He talked about how he had a copy of the Book of Mormon. He mentioned, "Yeah, and those brothers! They're always arguing!" He said missionaries used to come and meet with him and his wife, but he never had a chance to come to church and him and his wife had a hard time understanding everything. But, he was really willing to leave his phone number and address and allow us to come visit him again. We also met a man right outside the family mart across the street from the church who wanted us to also meet his wife who owns the family mart. So we went in and chatted with both of them. They said their friend is our super active member, and that they could schedule with her to come and do a chapel tour and check out our church. So, of course we talked to that member about her getting in contact with them.
Thursday. Contacting. Exchanges.
Friday. Zone conference. It was great. When we start meetings with president, he's just like, "Open up your scriptures to..." And then he just expounds the scriptures and it's so awesome. I love him. Him and Sister Day did a hilarious skit of a bad weekly planning session (but a lot of it was totally true - aka we need to be better at doing weekly planning). At the end of zone conference, he called me up to bear my testimony because it was my last zone conference (!!! :( ) and it was a really special, cool opportunity for me to bear my testimony then. I expressed how grateful I constantly am to Heavenly Father that He prompted me to come on a mission and that I finally followed that prompting. I bore testimony about how I've learned a lot about God's love for us. And then I bore testimony of how God will provide for our future as He has the past. I have more faith in the future than I usually have. I'm getting a little more faithful and I love it. (TARA, thanks for your letter. It was super inspiring. I have so much I want to say to you.) Then I went on exchanges in my area with a new sister chu. We got to drive back with President and Sister Day, which was the BEST. LOVE them. We chatted a lot. About their jobs, their real lives, how they gained their testimonies. President Day told us how perplexed he was by the low speed limits in Taiwan and Sister Day got mad at President Day for not stopping fast enough at red lights. Sister Day said she loves being on a mission because she loves us and she loves spending so much time with President Day. Precious. She said she doesn't want to leave. They're the best and so diligent and dedicated. They never complain even though they're crazy busy.
Saturday. Lessons, phone calls, exchanging back companions, member visit, etc.
Sunday night, we had a big miracle. We finally got to meet with an investigator Sister Ochoa and I contacted last transfer. He's getting married soon and we talked about the importance of families. We asked him if we could meet with him and his girlfriend, and he said that would be good. Last night, when we went to his little bread shop, their friends - a married couple - were there as well. They were all just sitting there, drinking tea and hanging out. We had a really wonderful meeting with them. They were super nice and friendly and all willing to commit to pray. They felt like they were our good friends. Ps, love when I make jokes in Chinese and people think I'm so funny. Best.
The Ma family is still doing really good. They didn't come to church on Sunday because they had to go to a cemetery, but other than that, they're doing good and progressing a lot. It's been a little bit challenging helping all of them progress equally and individually, but also together. We need to be better at following up, so we want to take more time to call them, visit them, and visit the oldest daughter at her work at a bread shop. The 14 year old is doing especially good. He writes in his journal daily, and also daily reads the Book of Mormon and prays.
Our other really good investigator is Chen Min Feng. Her faith has grown so much; it's incredible to witness. She's taking baptism really seriously. At first, she wasn't sure if she wanted to set baptism, because she felt like before she wasn't ready, and she really wanted to make sure it was right. Recently, she's been feeling better and better about baptism. She said she feels good about it, and feels like she needs it. In order to help her hit her goal and to continue to increase her faith, we're going to meet with her 3 times a week. We're super happy that she's so willing to meet so often.
Whew. Love you all so much. Especially Faj Mahal, Mom, Kai, Niels, Finny, Lars. Think of you and pray for you. The church is the best. The gospel is the truest.
Love, Sister Natalie
Zoe, did I tell you thanks for your letter a while ago? I loved it.
Emily Larsen. GOT YOUR EMAIL. love love love love you.
delicious dessert. tortilla/crepe with ice cream and crushed peanuts inside.
fat noodles, my favorite.
waiting for zone conference to start.
Elder Farrell's trainee made this little star for him and put it on his bike. great chinglish.