So Odessa is pretty amazing. It's a beautiful city by the Black Sea and a lot of the architecture was done by French and Italian architects, so it actually looks European--unlike many cities in Ukraine which got hit hard by communism and its uninspired architecture. We live in downtown Odessa, a minute away from the ocean.
Another thing that makes this area so great is that it's the center of the zone, so lots of things happen here and I actually get to see a bunch of missionaries every now and then! We're just a little family down here. We welcomed a new senior couple into the mission by going to pick them up at the train station at 6:45 a.m. We also hang out on -days. It's just good here. The hardest thing is NOT turning into a tourist.
My companion is Elder Schaumann from Upland, California. His mom is Russian and he actually went to BYU at the same time I was going, so it's very possible we saw each other there. He's super funny and we get along pretty darn well, so Odessa had been a great experience so far.
We've also found a few investigators who seem pretty excited about the Church, so we're hoping to make the most of that, obviously. We're also working with a 20-year-old boy in the branch who wants to serve a mission, so we're helping him prepare.
It's hard to remember what the mission was like back in the winter, even though it really wasn't that long ago. It's just been so different and so much has happened. Living here in Odessa at the beginning of the summer makes remembering Chernigov in the winter almost impossible, haha!
Love you all; hope life is good. Also, big shout-out to my little brother Hans who graduates this week!!!