Monday, November 5, 2012

New York Storm

Us and Arus, the new member in our branch. She's an amazing 75 year old lady :)))

I have to admit, I'm not sad of the fact that daylight savings doesn't exist over here. I remember that Armenia changed it when I first got into country. It makes things a whole lot easier to deal with. Plus, people have trouble coming to things on time here, despite changes in time to mess them up more.

So I heard about that storm in New York from one of our members....and everyone else we talked to this week. It always seems like by the time news reaches this small country, everything gets twisted out of recognition and blown way out of proportion. I've heard everything from a tsunami that wiped out the city, water levels that have covered three story houses, the government closing off the island, people dying because gas couldn't reach the island (not sure what that has to do with people living or not), and even Obama himself dying in the storm. So I figure, well, I'll find out when I get home, which by that point it won't matter. Not that it would anyways. It's kind of funny what all doesn't 'matter' when you're out here on a mission.

Well, my trainee is doing fine :) He's a hard worker and is making progress every day. It's a little stressful coming from the MTC thinking you can just baptize the world and it's just a math formula which is obedience+hard work = baptisms (at least one a week). But he's adjusting really well and is very bold on the streets. The language mistakes happen (and are sometimes hilarious, such as "we are all mistakes" instead of "we all make mistakes") but those are supposed to happen and will get flattened out over time.

How do I feel about the culture and Yerevan in general now that I've been here over a year? Well, I think it's amazing. Yes the people have their faults as everyone does, but their peculiarities continue to amaze me. We have someone we're working with in our area who's trying to save up money for an operation to remove his liver cancer and disabled legs. His mother receives a little bit of money from her petty work, yet, just yesterday, she made us my favorite Armenian dish after having secretly found out what it was (she prepared a whole feast for us that day).

In terms of service, we helped out that family on Saturday. We pulled down the dead grape vines that were hanging over their garden and collected branches and other twigs for them to burn during the winter. It was fun and we got a ton of scrapes and scratches as medals of honor.

I have to admit, it didn't surprise me too much hearing about Russia and propaganda just starting. It's something we've had to deal with here in Armenia a lot. The Armenian Apostolic church (and therefore the government to some degree) has openly opposed the church, by name, but under the flag of their traditional religion rather that Soviet pride. Granted the Jehovah Witnesses get most of the flak, we still manage to get a large portion of it as well. It doesn't help that "Morm" means Tarantula in Armenian...We get that a lot.

Well that's pretty much my week. :) I love you all!

Elder Hammer

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