Oi amigos e familia,
As the title suggests, I flew to San Fran for a day trip this week. The way this transpired was that Sister S. and I got a random call down to the travel office. They told us that on Friday we needed to resolve some things with our Visas that couldn’t be done online. It had to be done at the consulate. They said we would be leaving for the airport at 4:30 in the morning to fly down to San Francisco.
After much confusion we realized what was happening. Friday morning came and can I say that I never want to wake up that early again! 3:30 is not good for missionaries. I have no idea how my dad does it every day.
Anyway we got up and drove down to the SLC airport sat for three-ish hours, met a soon-to-be elder who also had to go with us. When we got on a plane, we met a very lovely lady named Heather. She talked with us the entire way there. I forgot to mention that this was Sister S.’s first plane ride. She must have said at least 20 times “This is so cool! I’m so excited!”
Once we disembarked we got in a taxi and drove to the consulate. They had no idea we were coming. The person who was in charge of the visas was on vacation or something, so we sat for about 20 minutes. We had our pictures taken, verified our information and then we were sent on our way. However, we had no idea what to do next. We called missionary travel from the cellphone they gave us and they said, “Oh well get some lunch, get a taxi and head back to the airport.” There was just one problem with that. There was not a restaurant or a taxi in sight! So we wandered for about an hour trying to find a taxi when lo and behold, one was stopped at a light and we all climbed in.
After a few minutes of silence we started talking to the driver. His name was Daniel. He’s from Ethiopia and studying to become a radiologist. After figuring out all this and another minute of awkward silence I finally brought up the topic of religion. He just said he was an orthodox. I’m not sure what denomination but that’s not the main point. We started talking about being LDS and surprisingly the only thing he had apparently heard about us was that we don’t go to college. Anyway, the thing that interested him the most about the church was the humanitarian things we do. He then asked where the church was located in San Fran. We didn’t know so Sister S. wrote down the LDS.org and Mormon.org websites down on a card and he told us that he would look at the websites and try to find a meetinghouse near him. As we were exiting the taxi, he already had LDS.org pulled up on his phone. Let’s hope he follows through with his promise.
That wasn’t the only adventure we had this week. The day after that we lost the six Missionaries to the Brazil MTC, we received word that several others had gotten their visas as well, and then another group and another. So this morning we said goodbye to another eight missionaries. Now there are only four of us left in our district, Sisters S., A., Elder M. and I. We went from 108 missionaries in our zone down to 11 in the space of a week. How crazy is that!?!? It’s going to take some time to adjust but we’ll work through it.
Tomorrow the four of us get to be hosts for the Greenies coming in! It’s exciting and I get to use my pack mule powers for good. It’ll be really fun. We will get a double shipment of missionaries because Thanksgiving is next week and they don’t send new missionaries in on the holidays. It feels so weird to realize that I’m already halfway through my six weeks here. I’m still not ready to go and I don’t think I ever will be ready. But I know that the Lord will Guide me through it all. Life goes on here at the MTC as good as ever.
Tchau! Bom Dia!