Wednesday, July 13, 2011

July 13, 2011

Prigging is just passing out invitations to anything, and English prigging is English club flyers. Oh my goodness, some of the things Hannah said were hilarious. It seems so weird that she is saying so much. I guess she is almost 4, but it seems like when I left she was just starting to talk a lot. I still haven't done anything with my shoes. I've just been trying to wear outfits that I can just wear my brown shoes with. Which is really tricky. I will try to send a cassette sometime, but I'm not sure when, or how well it will work, since the postal system here is crazy. I love Russian food. I am super good at flipping блины which are basically like crepes, but Russian, but I don't really know how to make the batter well. I super want to learn how to make Borsh (there's no t at the end, I have no idea why Americans do that). You should just send pictures as an attachment. I can figure out a way to get them if I want, but email is definitely more reliable. I have written Lindsey one letter, but I don't know if it's gotten to her yet. I think not, because I got a DearElder from her a few weeks ago and it said that she was wondering if I got her first one. Tell her that I think about her a lot and also tell her Happy Birthday because today is her birthday and I'm thinking about her a lot and that I miss her and that I just wrote her a letter this morning, that I'll probably send in a few weeks, I hope. (i just try to send all my letters at the end of the transfer because that way I don't have to make as many trips to the post office). ALso, about my memoirs of Russia, you should save all my emails, because I think it would be great to have them all in a book or something to go along with my journal. And we didn't really get thrown out of the subway...we were on the street and he told us to get back on the subway to leave "his territory."

Anyway. This week has been pretty crazy! So much has happened. First, please pray for President Sorenson. He is very ill. He and Sister Sorenson even went back to the States for 2 weeks. Things are still running smooth without him, but if you could remember him in your prayers that would be wonderful. 

We've met some interesting people this week. First, at English Club last week this sweet girl came for the first time after Elder Woodruff handed her an English prig on the street and started talking to her about the church. Her name is Lena, and she was just beaming and stayed for the spiritual thought and everything. Unfortunately, she left to go volunteer at a children's summer camp for a month. But hopefully she'll come back. Hopefully I'll still be here in Kahovski for another transfer to get to teach her. We went down to a kind of suburb to the south of Moscow to visit one of our members. We got there and her door was unlocked, but she was asleep on the bed with her little almost-2-year old, so we decided to go buy some bread while we were waiting for her. This crazy guy started following us around. He thought we were tourists at first and wanted us to come with him, but then even after he found out we live in Moscow and C. X is even Russian, he still followed us. It even got the point that it was kind of freaky because he WOULD NOT leave and we didn't want to take him to Nina's place, but luckily the doorguard at Nina's asked us who we were going to and we told her that the man was not with us, and she wouldn't let him in. Then we met a woman from our area book, an old investigator. She met with the missionaries on and off for almost 2 years, and they finally dropped-dropped her about a year ago, but we felt like we should go see her and when we called she was more than willing, so we'll see how that goes. We figure she was really nice, and we can go visit her once every few weeks even if she doesn't progress. But we're hoping we can maybe make some progress with her.

One of the miracles this week was that some Elders from the other zone called us and said that they have a woman to pass to us! She's getting baptized on the 23rd, but we haven't actually met her yet. However, she's awesome, the Elders say and we should be meeting her hopefully on Friday, so that we can start to finish teaching her. We also received a contact from our senior couple, the Craythorns. They don't speak Russian at all, but this young mom saw Elder Craythorn on the metro and followed him off the wagon and wouldn't let him leave the station until she had his phone number, Sister Craythorn's, and ours, and he had hers. We called her the next day, and even though we will need to pass her to the Arbatski sisters, she is super cute. She has 2 little boys, who are 8 and a half and 7 and a half named, Misha and Danil (the Russian equivalents of Mike and Daniel, haha). When we called her though, she said she didn't want us to come over because if we saw her apartment we would never want to come over again, so we went over to help her clean. It was HORRIBLE. You thought that MY room would get messy. This room had not seen a floor in 3 years, I think. And there was so much junk. It was like Grandma and Grandpa Ashby's house in Oakland except worse. Plus it's only this small 3-4 room apartment. We found moldy wood, dog poop, and a ton of other disgusting things in the little boy's room. But Sandra, the mom, who's 27ish, is tired of living in an inherited mess and with inherited messy habits and wants to change, plus she just feels stuck in a rut. When she met Elder Craythorn he described it as like she knew that she couldn't live without his number. When we gave her a Book of Mormon, she just looked so excited. Unfortunately, she also left town for a few weeks, so we'll see what happens.

Yesterday we had a great mission conference, even if President wasn't able to be there. We talked a lot about family history and how to use it as a contacting tool. There are actually so many great resources here in Moscow to use. It made me kind of wish I had Russian ancestors like Sister Mordwinow to find while I'm here. But we're going to try some of it out, because really, I think it will be such a great way to help people feel the Spirit. We also talked a lot about our mission goals and how to achieve them. Also, we had a training on English Club and how to make it better, which started with a joke with the APs and ZLs telling us that English Club was being shut down by the police at least until the end of the year. It was so believeable, because could easily happen if they came and found just one little thing they didn't like. But it was just a joke, and don't worry, English Club will go on! Hoorah!

THe other main thing is that C. X goes home tomorrow! It is so crazy! Sister Mordwinow and I had a lesson without her this week when she was in a meeting with the other missionaries who are leaving, and it went much better than I thought. I was worried that they wouldn't open up to us since they're so used to C. X. and they mostly just think of me as someone who can't speak Russian, but I've come to realize in the past few days/weeks that people will talk to me without her being there and that they love me too. PLus Sister Mordwinow ROCKS so we're going to have a great next 3 weeks, and hopefully more afterwards too. 

I love being a missionary! It's been the best 6 months of my life so far. I'm glad you had fun in Nauvoo. Please pass my message on to Lindsey. The Church is true.

Sister Ashby

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