Let's start off all the way back to when I was still at the MTC. The day was Saturday I believe. Saturday the 18th of July. It was the last day of our classes and we were all getting excited to actually leave that prison-like place of learning ... Yeah. It had been a long but fun six weeks and we were all ready to go out and experience the real world here in France. Little did we know that wasn't actually going to be the case. We went about our Sunday thinking of all the things we had done and went around saying our goodbyes to people we might not ever see again. And finally the last Sacrament Meeting I would have in Tahitian. (we were in a Tahitian branch in the MTC) But let me tell you, after experiencing 4 hours of French church, 3 normal hours and 1 branch council hour, I would rather have it be in Tahitian with some English. Side note on this week's Sacrament, the bread we used was from a baguette. Definitely something we should implement back in the states.
Back to the main story.
So Sunday night finally came and we had a little going away party, as much of a party as we could do in the MTC, and said goodbye to the three other missionaries going to the little brother French mission up in Paris. We woke up the next morning a little before 5 a.m. and made our way to the travel office to get sent off to the airport. Now apparently it's kind of a new thing where we actually take the Front Runner, that's a train for all you non Utah people out there, up to Salt Lake and then take another tram to the airport. Now if trying to get all eleven of us on the trains when we all have three big suitcases isn't fun, then I don't know what is. (see attached picture) Yeah it was pretty crazy to say the least but I'm happy to say, we never did lose anybody or more importantly anything. I might have gotten those mixed up but, maybe not. So after we finally got to the airport, we had a few hours to sit and chill and talk to our families. We also had time to get some real food. And my food of choice at 9 in the morning? Cafe Rio salad of course! My Dad would have approved. That was my last American meal for a while and I am happy to say I was satisfied with my choice. We got on the plane and headed off to New York. With the song Welcome to New York by my girl Taylor Swift playing in my head, great song if you haven't heard it, we went in for the landing in New York. We circled around the airport for awhile and actually got to see a little bit of the surrounding area which was pretty cool. Little did we know that when we landed, it would be a different story. So we touched down and we all got off and met up again, all eleven of us ready for our 7 hour plane ride. Well it turned out we landed early and so we thought we had a little bit of time to just chill but we still had to switch terminals which took a little bit of time since none of us had ever been to JFK before. We actually figured it out pretty easily. Sounds like the start of a joke or something. "How many missionaries does it take to get to the other side (of the airport)?" The answer is eleven in case you were wondering. Well we went to go print off our tickets and then the lady who worked for the airline kind of started to freak out because our airplane was taking off in a mere 20 minutes and we still had to go through security. So nothing like being personally escorted through the airport in order to catch our plane. Yup, that lady was nice. Side note actually, when we initially tried to print off our boarding passes, it said we were too late and so we had to wait in this line to talk to someone. Still not sure what happened there ... Well we made it on the plane somehow but our bags didn't. I'll explain later. So it turns out the plane we were taking was one of those massive air bus ones. Like 3 seats by 4 seats by 3 seats on the bottom floor, and yes you read that right, the bottom floor. It had two stories to that thing. Luckily for me, nobody sat next to me so I had two seats the entire 7 hour flight. It was also one of those planes that feeds us two meals while we were on the plane. We even got to choose what we ate for dinner. Guys, we get special treatment since we are missionaries. Or maybe everyone on the plane got it. Eh, that's not important. Alright. You still here with me? I'll now allow you to stand up and twirl around a few times maybe do some stretches. Don't worry, I'll still be here waiting for you.
Ready? Let's continue.
So after that eternity of a flight, which I had this headache that felt like I had a brick pushing on my forehead for like 3 hours, we finally landed in Paris. So you would think, oh it's Paris, we probably will be able to see something awesome out the windows! Yup nope, it looked like I was in the Midwest with it being so flat. Dang it France, you've disappointed me so far. It's okay though, I shortly forgave the country after eating a pain au chocolat. If any of you go to France sometime, go find one of those in the airports, it's worth your time I promise. So we still had another flight to actually get to Lyon but luckily it was only about an hour. We finally landed in the promised land of thee France Lyon Mission. We got off the plane and waited around for our bags to come out of baggage claim but it turns out, yup they didn't make it with us on the crazy plane adventure in New York. We had to sit around and file some missing bags claims and figure out where twenty lost bags were. So we learned that they wouldn't actually be getting to France for another day or so and luckily I had packed enough clothes in my carry-on just as a precaution for this sort of thing to make it okay for the next day or so. Others weren't so lucky. Well we left the main area and met our mission President and the APs who luckily took us in and loved us and fed us some real food. We took our obligatory pictures, which we of course we looked great in since it's wasn't like we had been traveling for over 20 hours or anything. So while the Sisters got in the car with the President, we made our way with one of the APs through Lyon and to the mission office and sat around and talked for a while. We learned as much as we could after not sleeping at all that day and were taken to the President's house and were given a real meal. Let me tell ya, that was some of the best food I've had after being in the MTC for all those weeks. We finally were allowed to go to bed after spending a few hours at their house.
Now finally, after traveling for like 20 hours, going on three planes and being awake for over 34 hours, that was some of the best sleep I've ever had. Except for the fact that there is no A/C in France. That was a bummer but we made it through the night.
My time is running low so I'll continue with the rest of my adventure next week, including my first companion Elder Bake. I only had enough time to send a few pictures, so more are coming. Oh and we had twelve people at church yesterday so that was weird ... It's also in a converted house to a church. But it works great. This has been, Elder Wilson's first week in France. Thanks for tuning in this week and thanks to everyone who writes me.
I really appreciate it and I love you all!
Just try to get all this luggage off the train before the doors close!
We have arrived! That was one long flight.
Parting shot with the MTC group before we go our separate ways.
The newest AP, Elder Barnes, who just happens to be my second cousin. We did not realize this at first. We figured out that our Dads are first cousins and we have been to many of the same family functions. I knew he looked familiar when I met him!
The street that I live on. Word has it that our apartment is one of the nicest ones in the mission.
The stairs we go up and down all the time to our apartment.