I finally have stuff to talk about! So this week we did an exchange in Кривой Рог (Kryvyi Rih) which is the longest city in Europe, btw. Despite the first rain storm in maybe six weeks, we were able to do a lot of work, and we topped it all off with tacos for dinner! I recently got a package from my mom with taco seasoning and New Mexico green chile, so we had New Mexican food in Ukraine! We also made our own tortillas, and everything turned out really well. We were four happy missionaries.
As for weather, we went immediately from hot summer days to fall. It has been cloudy, rainy, and windy. Usually, I dislike this weather, but I've been enjoying it recently because it reminds me of NorCal beaches. It also smells awesome and cleans up the city. Maybe, if it persists, I'll stop enjoying it, but for now I'm liking the change of pace.
School started here in Ukraine last week. Every school starts on the same day regardless of whether it's preschool, high school, or college, so this city has become full of people as everyone has returned from their vacations to go back to the school grind! It never seemed empty, but now it's just swarming with people. We're okay with that because it also means more people will be coming to our activities!
And now for the best news: Ilya got baptized on Saturday!! He had had a testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel, the church, the Book of Mormon, etc, but because his parents were against it, we were afraid he wouldn't be able to act on his testimony. But after lots of praying--and lots of discussions with members of the church here in Ukraine that have had similar struggles with family not being supportive--he decided to get baptized! I wasn't there, but Elder Rawson told me that it was a great service. He was baptized by Elder Rawson in the Black Sea, and afterwards bore his testimony about why he decided to take such a huge step in life. He is excited to receive the priesthood, visit the temple in Kyiv before he goes home to St. Petersburg (there are no temples in Russia), and one day serve a mission!