Tuesday, August 26, 2014

8/25/14 ~ Getting My Exercise in Dong Hai

1)  How do you like your new area?  Is it very different from the rural areas?  What is the biggest adjustment you have had to make?
Well, my new area is super city... and super on a hill! I've yet to have a true work out on my bike till I got here. Now every day I am sore and exhausted! :P  So I guess biking is the biggest thing.

2)  Tell me a bit about your companion.  Name?  What are her interests?  How old is she?  How long has she been out?  Do you two get along?  Who is the senior companion?  My companion is Sister Berrey.  She is from Boston.  She is 19 and she has served for 4 months.  She does colourguard.  She is nice and sweet, and likes to eat only veggies and fruit for her meals. I'm senior. duh! Haha! But she is leading the area, since I just got here.

3)  Is it still way hot there?

4)  Have you found any good places to eat there?
Um, there is a market that we go and eat at.  Since, as I said before, my companion likes to eat only fruits and such.  But the market also sells other yummy foods, like sushi, and there is a good bakery across the street.

5)  Any investigators in the area?  How large is the congregation?
So here, we get a lot of one time visits... no progressing, but we meet a lot of people who are at least willing to visit with us once, more than we had in Zhang Hua.  The congregation is about 30-50 people.  It was 50 people yesterday because it was a ward conference, but normally I hear it's like 35

6)  What are your plans for the day?

7)  How large is your area?
I can probably fit at least three of this area into my last area... my last area was huge.  But here it's all on a hill

Hello Mum, Regan, and Everyone!
Well, that week went by fast and slow all at once.  Dong Hai is definitely way different than any of my other areas.  It is very, very city.  And I feel that since it is Taizhong, people are a bit more open to letting us talk to them. Or something... We met a lot of cool people! However, previously in this area they only get a lot of one time visits.  We are going to change that!  I'm building my faith in this area, since I want to make this the most worthwhile experience possible.

Bunk beds!  Sister Peng's bed is on top
My companion is also pretty different from the other companions I have had.  Sister Berrey is from Boston and she has bright red, curly hair.  She also has a lot of faith and is very diligent in this work.  It's hard to believe she has only been out for 4 months.  It's funny, this is her first area, and it will most likely be my last.  Anyways, from her I am hoping to really get to know this ward and love this area.  There is a lot of things I could learn from her as well.  She is great at contacting people, because she is so fearless.

So... After emailing last week, we just got groceries and went home to eat dinner and rest for a bit.  Then we got to work.  We met with a Xiao family who are members (Xiao JM gave us very yummy green bean soup and mochi bread. :D).  They are a cute family.  Xiao JM is very sassy, and Xiao DX is very thoughtful.  Then we met with Chloe, who was an English Class student.  We've actually met with her twice, and she is so great!  I really do believe that she is progressing!  But, we found out she isn't in our area... she belongs to Feng Jia's ward... who is our neighboring ward... so sad... we still haven't had a chance to break the news to her.  We will be sad to let her go... hopefully the elders in Feng Jia will take care of her (Oh! Did I mention Elder Danny Dawson is in that ward?  We see each other a lot, since it's the same district.)

Tuesday, we met with a Huang JM who is an awesome member, who has a strong testimony of keeping commandments.  And then we had DTM.  Our District is so fun!  We are now named "The Children of Light" doesn't that sound awesome?  Our district has two sets of elders and us.  I think I might be the missionary who has been on island the longest... if not, I'm like second longest... crazy, eh?  I haven't been here that long have I?  O.o  This will probably be my last area... or maybe not... Crazy!
Meditating Elders
On Wednesday, I got my first taste of "The Hill", actually, Dong Hai is all hill.  But we biked up hill, on a pretty good incline for about 30 minutes straight.  I wanted to die.  Never before have I had such a hard time biking.  But I did it! I was so proud of myself!  And I was so gross and sweaty.  We biked up to where the Dong Hai Night Market is, though I don't think it totally counts as a night market, since it's also open during the day, there is just less people.  And there we just did some contacting and met with some cool people.  Afterwards, biking down the hill was so fast and fun.  Kind of scary, since I realized my brakes aren't the best.... I never realized how bad they were in my previous flat areas... And then we met with a Chen JM who is LA.  She is so cute, she is recovering from cancer, so that's why she hasn't been coming to church.  And then we also taught English.... Oh! I'm English leader.... So I'm trying to love English class....  Anyways.... that might be hard... our kids are sooo crazy!!!!!!!!! Like, I don't know how we should handle them. We then met with Chloe again. And a member named Sponge peike'd (sat in our lesson/helped us teach) for us.  Sponge is AWESOME! So cute! And so funny! Probably like on of my favorite people here. :D

On Thursday, we met with Tian JM, a LA, who I'm not sure how to help... she kind of has the attitude right now of "Just listen to me talk, cuz I don't really want to learn from your point of view." At least, that's what I got from her. Then we went up to the night market again, which killed more than it did the previous day.  But it was worth it, we talked to some awesome people, and we ran into a former investigator, who was really nice.  Her daughter was sooo cute!  We then biked to a Liu JM's (LA) house, who is from Indonesia.  She is... interesting... we are going to need a lot of help in helping her as well...  Then at night we met with a Shi XJ, who is a new investigator.  She is like in her late 50's, and she is so sweet.  She seemed so willing to try to do her own prayers.  So, I'm praying for her, so she might feel of a witness from Heavenly Father.

Friday we just had weekly planning, and our other plans fell through.  We did have our Ward Correlation meeting, which was very long, but the ward mission leader is very awesome at thinking about how to hasten this work.

Saturday we met with a Cai XJ and her kids.  They were fun, and really awesome.  But they aren't ours, we found out... they live in Feng Jia's area... Feng Jia is stealing our good investigators...  Then we met with a Jiang JM, who is an LA from the Philippines.  She was cute, and she came to church! Yay!  We also tried to go and sing at a night market in Feng Jia with the Elders.... Interesting experience.  There was soooo many people there. So crazy!

view from the church (19th floor in a high rise)
Sunday was fun, I liked going to church and meeting the members.  The ward here feels like it's a good strong one.  The members that I've met are all really nice and helpful.  So, hoping that this is going to be a miracle move call!

So, that's about it... Time keeps going by, memories are made, and the future is bright before us. 

This week I've been very grateful for the knowledge that I have of the gospel through the Restoration.  The teachings and the commandments of Christ are given to us, not to weigh us down, or drag us back, but it's given to us to set us free from grief and pain.  It gives us hope.  The Gospel can change anyone's life, if it's given the chance to.  I'm so grateful to be a missionary for my Lord and Savior.  Never before have I felt so close to him, and felt his love for not only me, but for everyone I meet and see.  He loves each and every one of you. I know that to be true. 

I hope each of you will have a great week! Have faith! Count Blessings! And if life gets hard, never give up!
Sister Peng & Sister Berrey

Love you!
Sister Nicholle Peng

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