Monday, February 13, 2017

Week 5: One Month In Cheers to Whitewashing

Hey everyone!

Things are going good out here!

This week has been kind of slow. Elder Watson and I got sent to an area where we have to whitewash. What whitewashing means is that we basically start from scratch. We began with no one to teach or any investigators. So we had to do a lot of GQing this week. The one great thing about whitewashing is that I can see how everything from finding to teaching to inviting to hopefully baptizing works. We are slowly building up a teaching pool. Finding in Ireland is not easy but on the bright side they are not rude about it.

So let me back track a little bit. I guess I forgot to tell you guys how I got to Waterford last week. So we left the mission home on the Feb. 3 from Edinburgh to Glasgow by bus. We then took another bus to Cairnryan about an hour south of Glasgow. We then took a ferry from there to Belfast. From Belfast to Dublin we took a bus. We stayed the night in Dublin and the following morning we took a bus from Dublin to Waterford. Sadly, I did not take any pictures but I did do a lot of sleeping on the ferry and buses.

Another thing I have discovered this week is just how big of an area we cover. We cover from Kilkenny to Tipperary to Wexford. So we often have to take the bus or get a lift from members to either do service for members or teach.

This week we had dinner at the Gibbons. Brother Gibbons is in the Branch Presidency. They fed us burgers. The food here in Ireland is not very different from back in Minnesota. We also went to go do service for an elderly sister this week in Dungarvan. We did some gardening and cleaned up some of her yard. That was the first time that I was able to do gardening in February. Another thing this week is I have learned how to cook (cook simple things like spaghetti, nothing like your cooking Mom.)

As far as packages go, I think we get them once a month if not for sure once a transfer. They are sent to Cork and I think if we go to Cork or if the Zone leaders who live in Cork go somewhere they might take some packages with them. If it will fit into a mail slot then it can be sent to the flat. We have a mail slot and mail just gets put in there. So if it is small enough to be put in a mail slot it should be fine.

So last week I told you about how I had to play the piano in church. Well I found out a little more about why I am now the defacto pianist. So I guess the previous ward pianist left on a mission this past week (I do not really know where but it is probably somewhere in the States). She was the only one who could really play the piano in the branch. When I learned this I was kind of surprised. It was amazing to see that I just happened to arrive the week that she was leaving. It is great to see that Heavenly Father watches out for His children and that He does answer prayers. The hymns they have me play are not terribly difficult and it has been a humbling experience for me to play each week and be able to help the branch. The branch here is great. One thing that is really getting pushed for is an increase in missionary work in the branch. The Limerick District is the only district in the Scotland/Ireland Mission so there has been a push from mission as well as district leaders to help this district become a stake.

One thing that I have not really mentioned is the differences in culture here. One of the biggest things I noticed in the Republic is that every road sign has English as well as Gaelic. Everyone here speaks English but it was interesting to see that Gaelic is still used in public here.

Another thing I have noticed is how many pubs there are here in Waterford alone. It kind of reminds me of that time we volunteered for Ragnar in Wisconsin and we kept seeing bar after bar after bar.

Everything in Ireland seems to be on a smaller level. The roads, sidewalks, cars, and shops are all smaller. Another thing I have found is that there are no nationwide stores in Ireland. The only store that I have seen back home that they have here is Aldi. One thing that is very common to say over here is 'cheers', which basically means thank you, you are welcome, best of luck, all into one word.

It has been an exciting second week in the mission field. I have learned a lot and am looking forward to this week. It has been amazing to be able to share with others the joy that comes from the gospel and how the gospel blesses our families. I am excited to continue to hear how wrestling finishes up for you Tyler. It sounds like you are doing really well. I hope you do well in Team Sections. Hope everything is going well back home. Hope you all stay warm and not just Dad. It's going good over here in Waterford. I will talk to you all next week.


Elder Calley

They have a Viking cut out not too far from our flat so I had my picture taken last P-day.