Monday, July 20, 2015

Week 38 - Durres

 O, our awesome investigator who we tracted into our 2nd day here, came to church woo! :)

 temple trip! so uplifting to feel that spirit again... jk Rome's not dedicated yet 

Durres District!(fergon to p-day futbol in Tirana) 

sky looked super cool from our apt this morning, also we are woken up by roosters errday (in Shqip they say "ri-ki-ki-kee" haha) 

Qeni qep'n le te haje
"let the dog eat the onion" aka that's their prob....just a funny new saying I learned but only use in emails home, because as missionaries, we would say, "qeni, mos e haje qepen.. haje buken;duam t'ju ndihmojhme prandaj na degjoni edhe hajdeni ne kishe" haha took that too far but my point was that as missionaries (and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, wherever we may be) we are here to serve and uplift everyone around us.. one of the best ways we can improve the qualities of our lives is by understanding and living the doctrines of the restored gospel, and that is what I am trying to preach to the people of Albania these days, everyday. 

It is HOT here and humid (never complaining about Texas or Florida weather again lol!) and I've sweat more this past week than the first 20 yrs of my life up til then (tmi, sorry). Funny to look back at the beginning of my mission in Prishtina were I was absolutely freezing 24/7 it felt like, and compare it to the VAP here. And it doesn't cool off at night; walking home right before 9 it feels like mid-afternoon! Afternoons, btw, the streets are completely deserted because everyone is napping (and escaping the weather with fans and cold water) so we try to plan our study times around that so we can be outside or knocking doors when people are awake and willing to chat. 

Luckily, since being out here in the Adriatic South, I've learned a lot more than how to endure extreme weather conditions... actually, seeing as I'm at my HALFWAY POINT (almost as crazy as the fact that Eliza's only got 2 months left!), I've been thinking a lot about life lessons learned out here and I'd have to say the most valuable ones have to do with my understanding of the scriptures, specifically in relation to the Plan of Salvation and Christ's Atonement. Mom, I liked the "hump-day" mission poem haha about how the first 1/2 has a lot of personal growth and change and realizations etc. and the 2nd half is all about the people; get your solid foundation and then just share and spread the word. I'm definitely ready for that in my missionary work! 

Oh I wanted to mention some funny highlights to help you get a better idea of daily life in Shqiperi.

*the street corner by the institute center has a butcher shop (very common and they stink as you can imagine; rotting meat stands lining the sidewalks everywhere) and usually we just pass goat heads or skinned animals chillen in the windows, but we got a sneak-peek one day when a side door was opened and we saw the lambs lying on the sidewalk, bleating, then walked past 5min later and didn't hear any more "baa"s but we did hear what sounded like water being poured.. it wasn't water. (Hah a vegan's take on Albanian meat markets lol? Someone else might say it looks delicious). 

*A guy came up to us while street contacting and asked us like 5 times if we want Albanian husbands, we clearly said no, we have another purpose and invited him to learn from the Elders and he made a face and left. Lol that's such a common experience tbh but this guy was def. the most forward/ persistent! The things that become normal over here..

*Motra Dejves had TONS of bad, itchy mosquito bites so some members gave her raki (Alabanian traditional alcoholic beverage) to rub all over them and it totally helped, I guess!

Yeah, it is HOT, I think my feet are damaged for life (constantly throbbing, is that normal dad?), but I love it here, I love my mission and this wonderful chance to serve in Durres. 
KLM! Ju duam, ju puthii! :*
<3 madi :)

Fruit sorbet (melon and kiwi etc!) and nutella ice-cream for sister Davis (her FAVE) gives us a little boost of enthusiasm aka energy to do this work 24/7 in this HEAT 
watermelon is less than $2 here!! YES. our stove's still broken.. we're getting by just fine, livin' off the land ;) (aka Albanians are hospitable so we get snacks at lessons)

cool-looking sky again
this little cutie! <3  /  
this girl, was the (Albanian, obvi) sister missionary serving in San Jose, Cali, and I wrote to her and finally got to meet her! 
 cool view (hej stacioni autobusit!) from a member fam's nice 13th floor apt. shyqyr the elevator worked 

Kosovo's not the only Adriatic South country that flies our flag!

maybe you could google translate this graffiti? haha 

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