Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Missionary Letters: Exchanges are Great

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 10:54 PM

Hey everyone,

This week was fun! First I'll actually answer questions because I usually run out of time and don't. And ARC is an Alien Residence Card. So it's like my green card. A Dan Jones is when you get up like in the front of a bus or on some kind of thing that is high, and you start preaching the gospel in a really loud voice and testifying for everyone in the large group of people that the gospel is true. It's unique.

This week was pretty for finding investigators. We had a girl, Chen Zixia, show up at the church one day, and we invited her to come to Sunday church. She came! And stayed for all 3 hours too! Then we set up for Monday, she got there early (Woo that excited!) so our zone leaders taught her, and she already has a baptism goal for the last Saturday of the transfer! And she already plans on coming to church again, since last Sunday when a member asked her about next Sunday, and she said "of course I'll come." It was a miracle. One of the members saw her looking at the church and asked her if she wanted to come in, then we showed up with like perfect timing. But yeah, we have a couple members that are amazing missionaries! :) Having a really good ward is so nice in the missionary work. I'm blessed to be in Zhongli...

On Monday before I left for splits, we were on our way to a morning appointment and ran into a member, and she was just like, OH I'll go with you! And then we had a peike (lesson taught with member present). It was awesome. She was a great asset. Especially since my speech is very limited and it takes lots of time and effort for me to say things, so if we are on a time limit sometimes I'll talk less than I already do. I'm getting slowly better about talking though.

And not to worry about my health, because 4 of our investigators, which we call the "Herbal Life team" are concerned for me. Peiyu told her mom that at 6 at night before a lesson with her, I was eating chocolate, because she had showed up early and we were eating. She was like "BU XING!!!!" Or, that is not okay. They say it a lot. Lin Jiazhen has tried to commit me to drinking 4 of my water bottles worth of water a day, and that is a lot, because she gave me this HUGE water bottle that I carry around with me now. But I try, since we committed her to read the Book of Mormon. Her husband died from a heart attack, so they got really into health. She wants to help people who are overweight become normal. Her daughter was overweight and is now really thin. They are always trying to get me to buy the shakes and stuff for my "own health" and instructing me on how I shouldn't go to McDonalds and eat more vegetables. Haha.

Taiwanese people are really blunt. People always tell me "did you know you are fat? Riding that bike will help you lose weight." Or once even, a member spend a lot of money to take us to drink grass and other gross "natural foods" Then I'm supposed to say thank you for calling me fat. That's so kind of you to tell me riding my bike will help me lose weight. :) It makes me laugh a lot though. I love their bluntness. It's amusing.

However, the food is taking longer to adjust to. I've eaten some pretty nasty things...pig's foot, grass, weird fishes of every kind, gross slimy things that I've never even seen in america so I couldn't tell you if I wanted to...But there is also food that is amazing

You know Desi, I don't think I would have sat down and cried walking on some pioneer trek. I wish I could walk! Riding a bike to Neili and all kinds of other cities since the sister's area is huge is a lot worse...well for the straight uphill part. The return trips, or going trips depending on where we are going aren't bad.

I'm glad you guys already got my package. It came fast! I just sent it last p-day a week ago! That's amazing! Sending packages here is really cheap, so I sent one to the Sneddons too. It cost like 12 dollars (American), including postage to send both of them. That's less than sending some stuff from the MTC was. Give Annika that piano pencil! I didn't realize she'd be home already when I sent it. I'll send another one in a couple months with candy once I figure out what the good stuff is. Don't worry about sending me anything until I ask for it, oh except in an envelope I'd like a family picture please, sending stuff from America is way more expensive! Americas postage is bad I found out. For us to send a letter to America here, it is less than the equivalent of sending a letter in the US to another state in the US.

So exchanges in Taoyuan were really fun! It was like a party. And my Chinese improved a lot. I was with 2 other sisters, so a threesome for 24 hours. One was a bendiren, or native Taiwanese. So if I used English it generally had to be translated, so I was forced to try REALLY hard to express myself in Chinese when I wanted to. They were so good for me. Planning was like a party, and we ate junk food, even though my trainer lectures me when I eat at night about storing fat...but nobody lectured me...and we just had a lot of fun. It was pretty much like a sleepover with lessons and tracting, etc during the day. In Taoyuan, they had a very distracting boy, about 10, so they had me teach him the ABC's while they taught his mom. I felt useful and in my element. His ABC's aren't perfect, but now he has V down, so that's an accomplishment. His mom gave me mangoes for payment for my English lesson. We tried to refuse, but she insisted. I ate one this morning. So yummy! That's a plus on food for here, the fruit. So good!

Sister Zhang and Bernardo were really sweet! I love them! They snuck a candy bar in my suitcase when I left. I need to get them something today in Taipei when we go to our once a transfer temple trip right after this email...and leave it in their mail. Sister Shi, the companion that split and went to Zhongli is really cool too! She left me a note and a bookmark and some candy on my desk. Aww. They are so sweet. I love bendiren (natives).

Oh ...something kind of funny about Taiwan...the weather is crazy! One day I'm dripping sweat, the next I'm dripping soaked from the rain...and yesterday I almost got knocked off my bike a couple times the wind was blowing so hard. Ah the joys of the tropics!

Xie Dai Dai's baptism date is mother's day. I'm excited! I love her. She is so cute. we drew "I love dai dai" in characters on the white board and she was like "OHHHHHH I LOVE IT...and took pictures...haha!

Yeah, so a mission is fun. Hard, but fun! I miss you guys!

Congrats on your job Gigi! Thanks for getting addresses. That's good about Matt and Felicia. I'm glad you are updating me about them, since our p-days we keep getting random lunches and dinners and temple trips so thus far I haven't had a single second to write a hand written letter besides those packages I sent. Keep me updated on the SC boys Annika, and Desi...Maybe that way I can have friends when I come back indirectly by hearing about it.

Love ya

Fu jiemei

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