So this was a pretty cool week. On Monday Elder Spriggs and I went to a Cossack show on the famous island in the middle of the river here where the Cossack's built a fort and held out against their enemies for a few centuries. If you want to see what a stereotypical Cossack looks like, go ahead and google it. The show was pretty crazy! The actors (Cossacks no longer exist) did crazy tricks on their horses and with their weapons. It was in Ukrainian when they spoke, but the words weren't important, haha. We just watched them be stereotypical, drunk warriors. Drunk Ukrainians are pretty hilarious, but don't underestimate them--they can still kick your butt.
Later that week we stopped by a family's house to drop off a Book of Mormon. The mom loved us and all she did was compliment our Russian and tell us that we were pretty awesome. We couldn't teach them then because their daughter had gotten a bit sick, but we're hoping on going over soon to teach the whole family! Later that day, we went to a university and did a presentation on the normal school system in America. Although we thought the presentation was pretty average, the kids thought it was awesome and afterwards they swarmed us to take selfies and what not, so we're hoping we'll have lots of new faces at English practice.
More good news, we'll start teaching another lady this week. She has a family, but they live kind of far away, so for now we'll just teach her while she's in town taking her kid to school and waiting to take him back home. If she's into it, we'll go and teach the whole family!
This Saturday we hosted our first sports night indoors. Usually we do it in a park, but it's getting a bit too chilly for that. Not too many people besides missionaries came, but we expected that seeing as we're just trying to get it started. It was fun and we played volleyball and took some pictures, and we're going to talk it up like crazy this week to get others to come.
After getting dinner at McDonald's, we went home to find that I did not have our keys on me. We only have one pair of house keys, so this was a problem. I was pretty sure I left them at the sports complex or lost them on the way to or from it, which would make finding them impossible considering how the sports complex is decently far away.
As we sat outside in the dark in our sports clothes, we called our landlady, who is awesome, but unfortunately was in a city very far away and wouldn't be back until the next day. After calling President, we decided to have the sisters who live near us stay the night with the sisters who live farther away, and then we would stay the night in the vacated sisters' apartment.
President asked us to escort them there because of how late it was, and when we all arrived to the far away apartment, the sisters pulled out the old left-behind clothes of previous elders who had lived there. Those are the clothes we ended up wearing to church the next day, considering we couldn't possibly go to church in our sports clothes. There was only one suit, and it only fit Elder Spriggs, and since he was speaking in church on Sunday, he wore it. I had an eclectic outfit of random stuff thrown together, accented with holey sneakers. Sunday actually went really well, though, and the members had a good laugh with us.
So that was our week . . . full of adventure, haha! Don't worry--we found our keys. They were in the church. All's well that ends well!
Well everyone, I'm getting transferred again! And for the first time, I'll be training! My trainee and I will be serving in a city called Sumy which is very similar to the city I was "born" in--Chernigov (Note: in missionary-speak, the first city of their mission is where they were "born."). We will be serving there with 4 other missionaries: a companionship of elders and a senior couple. The elders are Rowland and Terry, and I know both of them from the MTC. Elder and Sister Fast are the senior couple. From what President Wirthlin has told me, Elder Fast is fluent in Russian and Sister Fast is learning.
After getting some training, meeting my trainee, and getting trained together, we'll head off for Kharkov Wednesday afternoon and stay there the night. We will then head off for Sumy in the morning and get there some time on Thursday. It's going to be a good one. I'm excited!
Obviously, it's sad to leave Zaporozhye--especially when our district was getting together really well and we had finally found some investigators and even families to teach. Because there was a District Conference on Sunday, I didn't really even get to say goodbye to anyone. So that's rough. But I'll see them before I leave Ukraine. I've still got a lot of time left and if I continue bouncing around as much as I have been all mission, I'll see them somewhere or somehow, haha.
The holiday season is coming up for all of you in the States! I hope it is amazing and filled with family and happiness. I encourage you to do all you can to help others have the best holiday season of their lives, and by doing so I know yours will turn out pretty amazing, too!
1) I'm holding a Cossack's spear
2) Sports night picture for future advertising purposes
3) Group picture with some of the kids at our presentation