I'm still thinking it’s really not Christmastime though. The 60 degree weather here and the short sleeve shirts I've been wearing tell me otherwise. It’s definitely a change from the foot of snow and freezing temperatures I'm used to back home. I guess that's what happens when you are close to the Mediterranean Sea. Not going to complain.
Earlier this week we were in Bordeaux having a meeting with some of the missionaries up there and we decided to stay there for the rest of the week to help them with some of their lessons. Well I went off with Elder Reliford and we actually ended up at this Romanian family's house and they actually spoke English. That’s always a nice change. We were there with one of the ward members to do some home teaching for the month. After giving the message to them, they went on for like another hour teaching us all about their Romanian Christmas traditions. Well, what I learned is that apparently they have like a million traditional dances that they do all the time between Christmas and New Year's and each one has a different costume for each part of the different dances. They showed us this one where the guys have a costume that literally looked like Chewbacca, have to throw a Star Wars reference in here because of the movie that came out, but it was white instead. If I didn't know better and if I saw the costume in the forest, I would legitimately think that it was a bear. And apparently they cost like $15,000. Christmas present for me anyone? Also the family's last name was Dragon. Little bit fitting I guess.
On Saturday morning we got a call from our Branch President saying something along the lines of this, "Hey, so my wife just had her baby so I won’t be at church tomorrow. I know I was supposed to give the Christmas talk but since I won’t be around and the other guy who was going to give a talk isn't going to be there, you need to go to the Elders Quorum President's apartment and figure out a plan for sacrament meeting tomorrow." So that’s the story of how we were put in charge of planning a sacrament meeting for Christmas less than 24 hours before. Dope. Well luckily it didn't turn out too bad. We ended up going over to the Elders Quorum President's house, who may I might add, is a recent convert of less than a year, and made some calls and divvied up some talks about Christmas and about Christ for people to read in Sacrament. #thatsmallbranchlifethough and Steinbock pulled through with a talk in the end. Well we got to Church the next day and the person who was supposed to teach Priesthood didn't show up so guess who they called to teach? If you guessed the Elders Quorum President, you're wrong. Sorry. Yeah, it was actually us. So just on Sunday between the two of us, we taught two classes and gave a talk. Pretty sure the branch wouldn't be much without missionaries. I guess that's why we are here!
That's really all that went on this week. We are on our way up to Bordeaux later today because we have a bus to catch at 3:00 a.m. to make it to Lyon in time for our Christmas conference with everyone else in the mission. Should make for a good time. Here's somewhat of a Christmas card for you to enjoy.