Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Viets are Poets

September 21, 2014

The Vietnamese have this weird thing that they do when they just start rambling off weird Vietnamese poetry. It's weird. One minute they're just having a nice, normal conversation about rice or phở and then before I can even process what they're saying they're going off about lotus flowers and wise old men.
More than anything I want to be a real Vietnamese person. I try my best to eat some of the funky things people put in front of me at the dinner table, I wear socks with sandals like all the ladies, I put whitening lotion on every morning and evening. I'm doing my best to be as Viet as I can be. The only major road block is the my Vietnamese is worth 2 cents. So, to try to get at the top of my game I'm learning the weird Vietnamese poems. Although half of them don't make sense to me people love it when I say them and slowly but surely I will become a Viet. You know, I'm just preparing for the day that I inherit mom's nail salon. Haha

So list of things that happened this week:

Monday: Everyone went to play soccer. I chickened out like usual so I just sat there taking pictures. Some things never change.

Soccer...I don't know what Elder Thái was doing, but I'm glad I got the picture.
Tuesday: We finally got around to having our zone training. Sister Trà and I are doing this thing where we give our members and recent converts a Preach My Gospel and have them teach us the lessons and we act like investigators. It's a little weird because they even follow up with us and ask us if we've been praying and reading the Book of Mormon often. The lessons are amazing though and it's awesome to have recent converts testify to us about the truthfulness of the gospel instead of the other way around. Then at the end we review and evaluate what things they taught that were really spiritual and what could be taught better in preparation of teaching actual investigators. Since the last General Conference in April 2014 we've been sharing Elder Ballard's talking with everyone:

". . . I invite all members, regardless of your current calling or level of activity in the Church, to obtain a copy of Preach My Gospel. It is available through our distribution centers and also online. The online version can be read or downloaded at no cost. It is a guidebook for missionary work—which means it is a guidebook for all of us. Read it, study it, and then apply what you learn to help you understand how to bring souls to Christ through invitation and follow-up. As President Thomas S. Monson has said, “Now is the time for members and missionaries to come together, to work together, to labor in the Lord’s vineyard to bring souls unto Him.”5
There are practical ways for members to help and support our remarkable missionaries. For example, you can tell the missionaries that you are studying Preach My Gospel and ask them to show you what they are learning in their studies. As you share with each other, increased confidence between members and full-time missionaries will surely develop, just as the Lord commanded:
“But that every man [and woman] might speak in the name of God the Lord, even the Savior of the world.”7
And “Behold, I sent you out to testify and warn the people, and it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor.”8
Brothers and sisters, can you imagine the impact if family and friends included things they are learning from their personal study of Preach My Gospel in their letters and emails to their full-time missionaries? Can you picture the blessings that will come to families when they know and understand better what their sons and daughters will be studying and teaching on their missions? Can you even begin to fathom the extraordinary outpouring of atoning grace that will be ours, individually and collectively, according to the Savior’s promise to all who bear testimony in the process of inviting souls to come unto Him—and then following up on those invitations?"
Wednesday: There is a television program from India that is translated and broadcast on a local Vietnamese channel. Everyone watches this show...and everyone thinks that I am one of those Indians.
Thursday: I love Americans. Especially the American families in our branch that make us dinner every week!
Friday: One word: sweaty. We're making our way out of the rainy season and it's gettin' hot up in here. We spent an hour walking around trying to contact and by the end of it I was so sweaty that my lotion was literally coming out of my pores. I looked like I was melting because my arm just had this layer of white lotion on it. Hahaha Sups gross.
Saturday: It was a roller coaster ride of emotions that day. At noon we taught an investigator...she yelled at our member help and told her she didn't have any faith. That was suuuuuper awkward. Then I pulled an Elder Moreno from The District videos and told our nameless investigator that there was no way she is going to learn anything if she won't even open the Book of Mormon. Then we went home for lunch and I was really frustrated so I raged and asked the Elders to call the rice and chicken guy to deliver me food. The rice and chicken calmed me down. That evening the branch put together a going away party for the 3 members that will begin their missions this week. It was sad. We're all going to be serving within the same mission together but regardless it's still a goodbye and I hate goodbye's more than anything.
The going away party!
There's also a new girl in the branch. She's from Texas and is Mexican and Native American. She looks like she's from India though and everyone literally thinks that we are sisters...
Sunday: It was my cousins birthday. We had a party and they made my favorite food - rice porridge soup stuff with chicken! They just moved here and they've already made it three times for me. #TheGoodLife
Birthday party!
See ya,
P.S. I'm going to the hospital today because I've had a lump in my throat for two months...Happy P-day.

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