Almost funny story---I say *almost* because I managed to stop myself: The other day I was reading the Book of Mormon in Korean on the bus, a regular occurence when the people immediately surrounding you get less chatty. I also often ask the people around me what a word means when I don't know right off hand. Usually their explanations are way over my level of Korean, but at least it starts a conversation. Anyway, I'm reading along and I come across a word I don't know (of which there are usually many). I turned a little bit to ask the woman behind me and I felt this weird feeling I should just use my dictionary instead. Thinking this is silly I lean a bit more to ask. Same feeling only stronger. I thought that was kinda weird, so I retreat and pull out my dictionary to look up the word. The word was: circumcision. Yep, the Spirit protected me from starting a quite awkward conversation with an innocent little Grandma.
You know the cinnamon-flavored Hot Tamale candies? Well, Elder Matsuura got a box of them which he started handing out to people at Church yesterday----and Koreans HATE THEM!!! The second they put them in their mouth they gag and spit them out. It's worse than that time we fed the New Zealanders root beer! It's super-hilarious. If they react that way to Hot Tamales, I can only imagine what a Fireball would do to them :).
This morning we went on a tour of Hyundai Heavy Industries. This is a HUGE Ship-building factory a little ways north of my area (the other Sisters living in my house serve in that area). It was the coolest thing I've ever seen. They have the coolest equipment there! It was amazing to see. They have a dry dock for construction and you can see the keel of the boats and---it's just cool. I can't even describe how big those boats are. Sometimes we forget that people actually have to build these things. Someone had to think of the design, figure out HOW to make it, build a facility to make it, find the people with the skills for it....it's just amazing that so many people can all come together for such a massive project. I was like a kid in a candy store the whole time. I like machines :).
UM....Did you know it's really cold in Korea. I'm very grateful for my wool skirt---and the insulated tights a member gave me. And my nice coat. I didn't think I'd use my boots because it doesn't snow here, but I've worn them every day for a week just to keep my feet warmer. Cold feet are very uncomfortable. Man, my mission has all extremes of weather--hard to believe how drastic the change is. I've never felt a cold like this before. Before I know it it'll be the hot summer again. Weird.
I'm glad to hear that Grandpa Warriner is doing alright after his heart attack. Get better fast and stay strong.
Mom, sorry the Price is Right turned into such a fiasco for you. I know you've wanted to do that for a long time. I promise I'll go with you sometime when I get home---but only if you'll visit Korea-Town with me :).
Haven't heard much about Tim and Megan since May or June. It'd be nice to have a little update--hint hint.
As for the work, things are moving along well. Both of our investigators came to Church and stayed all three hours yesterday, which is always a good thing. I'm excited for how things have just picked up in this area after lots of hard work. We got a new Branch Mission Leader this past month and he's going to make great things happen. The work goes SO much smoother when you have a strong connection that's excited about their calling. I never realized how much of a difference WML can make in a ward. Not to mention, people respond better to being told to do more missionary work if their locally called leaders tell them rather than some punk kid from America. Unfortunately, I think my stay here in Shinjung might be cut short. I was excited to stay for a little while after Sis. Montgomery leaves, but now that she's extending I think I'll be leaving and someone else will come in. We'll see what happens. I still have a few weeks of good work to be done before I need to think about that.
I love being here. I love sharing the Gospel. It's tough, but it's worth it. It's the most amazing feeling to get off the bus having talked to someone who didn't even believe in God and having convinced them to pray and taught them how to do it. That's success that no numbers can record, but their lives will. Bringing others to Christ---one smile at a time.
Everyone be safe!