Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Missionary Letter: Paradox

Tuesday, July 28, 2009 11:52 PM

Okay here's a secret, I hate subject lines. I have no paradox for you at the time being, but it's the first word that came to my head when I had to fill in the blank. But actually, my English is getting really bad, i could not for the life of me remember how to spell envision. I couldn't remember if it was an e or an i. I finally decided it is probably an e. There is an Elder in my district that is an English major in college...and we discussed how to spell it three times already, with the conclusion that it is probably e, but neither of us would put money on it. Both of us agree that not reading a variety of books and learning a new language that is in almost no ways similar to your original language makes the original language skills decrease if you aren't keeping them up. I constantly find myself scratching things out in my journal and spelling them 3 or 4 times before I feel good about what I just wrote. My punctuation is completely sporadic, and i find myself often wondering what the meaning of words, such as remission are. Even though I already know...but then I just covet an English dictionary. Haha. And the Elder said that he just doesn't read his emails over twice anymore to combat feeling bad about his decreasing English skills, I'd kind of already adapted that policy way back in the MTC.

This week has been a crazy, crazy week. Yesterday we were in Taipei, and I was talking to one of the random Elders that showed up in the office with me at the same time...since my companion was in a going home job seminar, and I was just hanging out at the office. And we came to the conclusion that Heavenly Father knows us so personally, that if we are people that respond to humorous happenings, he uses a very funny sense of humor to teach us a lesson or six. So that you can sort of even understand because I couldn't even write it all out, I'll just tell you about one of the funny days out of the 2 or 3 I've had this week...since you already know the first part, or at least mom does...

So Thursday morning, we left our apartments like a normal day, and started the bike out to Neili, a pretty quick ride for us, because it is downhill. We were scheduled with a girl named Smile, who actually had saw me on the side of the street and turned around on her motorcycle and asked if she could meet with us. She is new in town and doesn't know the area, so we had planned 2 weeks ago to meet at the Carrefoer, a huge store here, kind of like a Walmart or something. Well, at that time my companion hadn't really asked which Carrefoer and just assumed the one in Zhongli, so we went over there, and found out she was at a different Carrefor...and she had to go, so she said we'd reschedule for her next day off. That was Thursday. People here work crazy she just gets a day off a week and works like 14 hour days. So yeah, we are biking to Neili, and we are going fast downhill, down tiny alley roads...and I come out into a small intersection, and there is a car down the hill a little ways, and I quickly evaluated breaking, but was scared I'd be thrown forward on my bike, so I decided to speed up instead, and should have cleared before the car got to the same point as me...unfortunately, for a reason I'm unsure of, the car also sped up...and so, hit me pretty hard in the back tire. I'm glad I sped up though, because then I was blessed to not fly off my bike and distroy my face or get hit in the middle, and have my body bruised up or yeah, my bike flew up pretty high in the air, but fortunately I was able to react fast enough to turn the bike to a more upright position with my thighs and land on my foot still holding my bike up. All that I felt, since I was probably in shock, was that my thighs hurt really bad from shoving my bike into a certain position in the air. The man got out of the car and apologized and asked if I was okay, and after I said I was fine, he looked at his car, and then was like, whatever...and told me I could go on my way. And these people that saw it all came up to me and patted me on the back and said I'd be okay, and xingku (respectable?) me. So yeah, we were not far to the Carrefor, so we finished riding out there, but my companion said my tire was pretty bent it was riding really slow and took a LOT of effort, but since it was only a couple blocks we made it no problem. Then we waited and waited for Smiles...and in the end found out that she was at yet another Carrefor, on the same road, different section, 20 minute bike ride down the street! Well, she had time to wait for us this time, but my bike wouldn't ride, and I had a bad feeling it was only getting worse, so we had to cancel on her again!! Wrong Carrefor twice! So once again, we didn't get to meet with her! We called and said it's probably Satan or something, and we are lucky, she said she'd re set-up when she knew her schedule on Sunday...So then we went to the bike shop, and I had to spend all the rest of the money I had for the month to repair my bike.

Well, I thought, no problem, I have money in my bank account, I'll just find somewhere to withdraw the money...but no ATM would take my card from Wells Fargo, and I was suspecting after a couple banks, that it was blocked, which I suspected since to this point I've been unable to withdraw money from it on my mission. So then, Friday, I called President, and told him I had 200 kuai left and had to go to Taipei twice before we got paid and I needed to be able to withdraw money from my home card. Especially since bike repair, our mission account we sign says to use money for home. So yeah, i want to follow the rules too. So...a phone card to America costs 200 kuai, so I knew I couldn't eat until I got money from my home account....since I had about 5 kuai left, which is nothing...100 kuai is like 3 dollars. So, despite the late time in America, I phoned home with permission, and had to get everything straightened out with mom! Thanks...haha. But that didn't mean the bank was straightened out...I called the toll-free Taiwan number to Wells Fargo, and they were saying they couldn't confirm my identity, and just wanted me to look online and check something, or give them my account number, which I didn't have...and I kept telling her my last POS purchase, but she said it was wrong, so after like 20 minutes of kind of going in circles with this Wells Fargo person, I changed the date of when I said the POS purchase was, and she unblocked my card. I'm not sure if she gave in or I was just saying it wrong seriously. But she said she found it, and I was really grateful, but then had no time for lunch because we had meetings, but it was okay, I was able to get money out so that we could ride the bus out to Rita's...who is scared to be baptized tomorrow, but I think she'll be ready soon, she just has to overcome a little bit of a family disagreement problem, she hates doing things her sisters don't agree with, so she's praying about it right now...but I withdrew some money and we rode the bus up there...and now I only have 4 minutes left, because I took too long reading emails...but what ended up happening, is we parked our bikes, rode up and back to Ritas, and I ended up dropping my key in a gutter and so we had to pay again to get back on the bus and ride it to our apartment, get my spare key, and ride the bus back up to the was a crazy week with stuff like that happening all week!

I'll send pictures next week, I was going to send them this week, but no time and I don't want to spend money on another hour! We are going to play with the Elders and some members at the church today, make food, play some games...because it's sister hill's last p-day she'll have time, next week she'll be packing since she leaves Thursday morning. Still not sure what will happen to me, I'll tell you next week when they decided and tell me! bye bye!

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