Monday, November 30, 2015
Anyways, love you all tons! Keep writing!
Our missionary work is going really well right now! Marcin and Tomasz are doing really well. We have a few more people meeting with us besides that, no one too regularly, but enough to keep us busy. And the language is coming along much better. I try to the members as often as possible to learn from them. For example, Silvia taught me a couple days ago that "dać komuś koszę" (give someone the basket) means to flake someone. Unfortunately that was learned at the expense of getting flaked.
Yeah our day ends at 330. Soon it'll be earlier. We try to street contact as much as possible before, and then plan meetings and go tracting after dark. It's starting to get really cold too. It snowed last PDay and it has a few more times since. We're hanging in at about a -5C to 5C range right now. I've been told to expect a cold Christmas. Considering when we first got here it was already colder than it ever gets in Cali, that was already part of the plan.
That's cool you ran into the guys! At least the guys in the country that is! Oh and the picture with all the candles is from a Polish holiday called Dzień Wszystkich Świętych (All Saint's Day). They put candles and stuff on people's graves, so the graveyards look really cool. It's November 1, so it's kinda like Poland's Halloween.We did hear about the Amazing Race thing, but unfortunately we did not see anyone. We are planning on going to the Salt Mines soon though. I think maybe in like 2 PDays or so.
Hey Mom!Glad Thanksgiving at home turned out alright! Sounds a little different than usual. We did okay over here though! We got an extra hour from President, so we went and got a rotisserie chicken! Not turkey, but it was way more food than usual, so I was happy. Then, the senior couple and the American members here threw a Thanksgiving party on Saturday. It was awesome. We had turkey and mashed potatoes! And we only had to cook one of those things! Not gonna lie, my mashed potatoes were pretty incredible, but it's hard to go wrong when you stick 3 sticks of butter in. I really did miss your rolls though, that was for sure. No one makes them quite the same.
Monday, November 23, 2015
We've had a lot of fun this week. We had a lazy PDay last week, but I got to take a nap, so it was cool. Since then we've had a few more lessons with our investigators. Tomasz and Marcin are still doing well. They're both just really cool guys. We met with Marcin yesterday after church, and he was hungry so we went to a bakery. He asked why we didn't get anything for lunch and we told him about the whole Sabbath Day thing, so he got us some cake and then said he'd try not to shop on Sunday's anymore.
Hey Everybody!Everythings still going well down in the Krak. Quite the nickname yeah?
I also had my first exchange. We do one with the Zone Leaders once a transfer. Elder Blunt came down to Kraków and Elder Vance went up to Wrocław. We spent the weekend together. Blunt is a really cool guy. Also, since I was the longest standing Elder in the city, I was temporary Senior Comp. Not gonna lie, I pretty much crushed it. We didn't get lost once. Also I took him out for the best kebab in the city. Basically a pro already.
Anyways, we did a finding activity the other day, and some really interesting things happened. A really drunk guy started bothering us, and we could not get him out of there. He was scaring away contacts, and we were just getting really frustrating. Since Elder Vance wasn't there, I had to be the one to tell him we were aliens. I invited him to church and said we'd be heading to Mars for the service (I learned the names of the planets that morning, inspired huh?) and he finally left us alone. Then like 2 minutes later, we tried to give a guy a card, and he said no, then comes back a minute later and asks to trade a card for a letter. So we were like ok sure and he hands us this folded up piece of paper. I open it up and on the inside it reads: "Hi Brothers, I'd love to recommend a book for you, it's called: How to Escape Cult Mind-Control." He didn't really speak English so the note barely made any sense at all, but it was just stuff like "Have the courage to question everything you know" and stuff like that. It was honestly the funniest thing that's happened all transfer.
Anyways as missionaries we're obviously a little entertainment deprived, so we've started watching old Mormon Messages on PDays, and we've found some good ones. I'd like to recommend "The Phone Call" and "The Schoolbus". Good stuff.
Anyways I'm glad everything's going well back home. Sounds like sports are starting to calm down again.
Hope you feel better Mom! WIth the foot and the sickness, that's kind of a double whammy! Wszystkiego Najlepszego!
Love you guys!
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
Monday, November 16, 2015
I'm sorry to hear about your foot, that's such a bummer! I guess you're right, how could anyone tell it was the Haskett family without a cast. Hope you heal up quicker than me and Dad.
I'm glad I left a legacy in the MTC. Hopefully the new MTC group lives up to it haha. That's cool you heard from Sister Yokim! I hope she's doing well. Tell her to look behind the Polish Only sign in the class, I left a little drawing there too. I hope it's still there. I'm glad Caleb's baptism went well! Not only is it fun because it's a special day, but the whole family comes out too, and that's always wild.
Kraków's doing well. Weather's getting really chilly, and it's rainy all the time now, which is a bummer because I lent my umbrella to a sister in the area and she still hasn't given it back. The ward is pretty awesome! There's only like 30 people there on a good day, and we meet in this tiny apartment building. But the members who are active are pretty amazing. We had a testimony meeting on our first week, and I went up first, but after that it got quiet. Turns out they have slow starts in Poland too, because after that pretty much everyone shared. They've all got strong testimonies.
Yesterday he asked, "Do they only let Mormons from the States serve missions?" So we told him no and I kinda jokingly asked, "You ready to serve a mission already?" And he was just like, "Well not today, but later yeah why not?" He's honestly not even a golden investigator, he's like diamond, or platinum or something.
Tomasz is a freakin rockstar. We met with him on Monday, and he was like, "Next meeting I have something you need to throw away, no questions asked." On Thursday we met again and showed him the baptismal interview questions, and he straight up committed to everything in one go. We taught the Word of Wisdom, Law of Chastity, and Law of Tithing in 20 minutes, and he accepted them all. He quit smoking. Then he hands Elder Vance this crumpled up wrapper and asked him to throw it away. So he does and after, Tomasz was like, "Those were my earrings, I heard you can't wear them in your Church." What the heck. It's not supposed to be this easy right? It's crazy, he's the perfect example of someone who has been prepared.
We've been really busy this week. Lately we've been meeting with like 7 people, which is crazy, Elder Vance says it's never this busy. Usually we're out doing missionary work for like 6 hours a day, but now we've actually got meetings to break things up. Right now we're still meeting regularly with Marcin and Tomasz, the same guys from last week. Then we've got a few more random people and groups. Marcin is doing really well, but he's had a lot of great experiences in the Catholic Church. That's Poland.
Hey Mom!I've got a little more time this week, so that's awesome.
Love you! Thanks for all the recipes! Till next week!
Monday, November 9, 2015
Love you guys! I'll keep working hard here if you do the same back home!
Thanks for sending those packages! I can't wait! Our address in Kraków is Łokietka 5/100, but I don't think that you can send packages directly to me, I don't have a way to pick them up.
I'm glad sports at home are still raging! And I almost forgot Caleb has his baptism on Saturday that's awesome!
I'm having a really good time here. It's not easy; I'm exhausted every day. I've learned how to fall asleep standing up when the bus is empty. But I'm having a good time. The language is actually coming along! We have to do an hour of language study a day here until the day we leave. People who are fluent in Polish and stop practicing lose it in a few days. But I'm slowly figuring more and more things out. I can solo contact now (slowly), but it's still really fun. People are always impressed when they say I'm from the States and that I'm learning Polish. Then I tell them it's only been 2 weeks here and they're like oaohaooaoahooaohoahoahoah how is that possible American's can't learn our language blah blah blah. Elder Vance has only been out a year and he's pretty fluent, so I have high hopes. He's from Colorado by the way.
But at the end of the lesson, he accepted a baptismal date as well! Same day as Marcin! Exciting stuff!
We're gonna work on that.
This week was pretty wild! First thing we did after PDay ended last week was meet with a new guy I stopped named Marcin. He was pretty cool, and he seemed to be pretty interested. Then at the end of the meeting, we left him with a baptismal date and he accepted! January 16th.Hoping things work out. We've also been meeting with an older lady named Marta in the park. She's super nice, but it's tough to really teach when you can't sit down. We we're cleaning the chapel the other day, and we found a note slid under the door. It was from a guy named Tomasz. He had met with the missionaries about a year ago and then disappeared. He tried to call to make contact but his phone's broken. We ended up finding him (a small miracle) and set up a meeting. We read the Book of Mormon with him and after, we asked him a few questions, and he interrupted us. He was like, you haven't asked me if this is true. So we were kinda like OK do you think it's true? He was like, I have this weird way of knowing if something is true. If it makes me sleepy then it's true. This Book made me sleepy. I know it has to be true.
Hey Mom!First thing, we don't have a lot of time this week. We headed south to Zakopane and climbed Mt. Rysy and kinda got stuck in some weather so we got home a little later than expected. It was still super fun though.
Monday, November 2, 2015
Hey Mom!This is officially the first letter from Poland! Pretty fun stuff! We've had a fun week, with finally leaving the MTC and the airport and Europe and everything, so it might me hard for me to get my thoughts all together.
So first things first: Kraków! I got pretty dang lucky with probably the most famous city in Poland. It's really pretty here, and not quite as cold as it was in Warsaw that first day. We got there and there was ice. Contacting the first day was so freakin cold I was dying. Apparently it only gets worse from here. We did have a lot of fun though. I gave someone a Book of Mormon and set up a lunch appointment for the AP missionaries there, which is pretty lucky; apparently that never happens here. The funniest thing is it happened at the first house we knocked.
That brings me to the next thing: the mission here is HARD. Like crazy hard. My training companion, Elder Vance has been here a year, and he's only even extended a baptismal invitation one time. And that dude flaked. That's not because he's not a good missionary either. He's awesome, and probably one of the best in Poland. Apparently a lot of the missionaries figure out a few things to say and then just give up because Polish is so hard. I can't say I blame them. I can barely understand anyone here. Church on the first week was hilarious. I got up and bore my testimony, and I did a pretty good job. All the members were really impressed because I'd been speaking for like 5 days here, and the Bishop asked if I had Polish family. Basically from that point on I understood about half of what was said for the rest of the 3 hours. Welp.
I am having a good time though. It's fun being here. The food's pretty good too, at least so far. We're pretty much super poor, so we barely eat at home (yesterday I ate some french fries for dinner), but a return missionary who's visiting bought us dinner the other night and we ate with the senior couple once too. That was a good meal. She made white chili soup kinda like you do and it tasted awesome. We won't be eating at the member's houses, and definitely not at nonmembers. They just can't really afford it. Apparently we sometimes will feed the members. Starszy Vance has had 2 meals with nonmembers in a year.
Vance is a pretty cool guy. Like I said, he's a boss at the language, and he's pretty dang patient too. He says that I came out of the MTC way ahead, so he thinks I can walk out of this transfer one transfer ahead. So that's my goal. It's also really nice having our own space in the apartment. It's pretty nasty, but it's big, so we have a ton of room to put our stuff. Apparently I got the worst bed in the mission, it's pretty much a mat. But somehow I come home every night and it's the most comfortable thing in the world. That's even more true in the mornings. In training, we have to wake up at 530.
We've got a lesson tonight, it'll be my first one. We should've had 3 more, but they all flaked. One of them actually showed up drunk, so that was neat. We probably wont be calling him again. I'm pretty excited for this one though. I actually contacted this guy. If we get him, he's mine. Wish me luck!
I can't think of much else new. One thing I do need though is stuff thats easy to cook! We eat the same stuff all the time! If you have any good recipies, like stuff for pancakes or cookies, send them please!
Love you guys so much! Alls well over in Kraków!