Well this week starts off with me on a train heading down towards Marseille. As you might have guessed, yeah, I did get transferred. I was transferred to a city called Gap. No, not the clothing store that I went to all the time when I was little where my mom bought me my little polo shirts and plaid shorts but a small town in the mountains. It’s a pretty nice place that is 360 degree mountains and views all around. It is the highest city in France at 750 meters above sea level and it is a valley on the top of the Swiss Alps that was created from a glacier. It is close to the Italian border on the east with Switzerland to the north, the valleys of southern France to the west and the Mediterranean sea to the south. Just up here yodeling and eating Swiss chocolate!
The first weeks in a new city basically just consists of meeting all the members, less actives and everyone the previous missionaries had been teaching. Now one of my favorite parts about it is that I can go up to someone on the street and create the excuse that I'm new and ask them some random questions and they always end up asking what an American with a terrible French accent is doing in a town in the Alps. Not too bad of a way to talk about Jesus.
Missionaries here have set up some weekly events that go on at the church. One of them happens to be an English class that we teach with about half a dozen or so people that come to it. It’s pretty fun to have all these French people talking English with their French accents just as you see in the movie Ratatouille. Except they don’t all have mustaches and wear berets. Speaking of which, I realized this week that there aren’t many movies about French things. Except for that movie. I'll have to watch it again and let you know how similar it is.
One person we did go see this week was a lady who is from Nigeria. Well we initially walked in to the lesson and just had three people in there, one of which was a member. I think within the next 30 minutes that followed, I saw at least half a dozen other people come in including someone with some pink dreads. That seems to be a popular thing here.
A few days ago, the missionaries from Aix came up to spend the day with us and see how things were going. Well as part of it, Elder Szuch and I talked to some guys playing this game called boules that’s really popular in France. Basically everyone has some metal balls, they toss them and try to land them as close as possible to this smaller ball. The game is huge here and we ended up playing with the guys for a bit and talked about American stuff. Usually what happens with older teenage kids.
My new companion, Elder Atchison, comes from England and so I'll definitely let you know when I've learned how to make good fish and chips and learned some British sayings. The accent might be harder but we'll see what I can do.
Now, to just briefly review my week two weeks ago.
That Monday we went to President's house for the day to hang out for P-day with all the other missionaries around and we actually got a picture this time. But what was cool is earlier in the day, we actually got to teach one of our investigators. Well I should say the only investigator that we had. But he's still as great as always. We passed him to the Sisters back in Lyon, since Elder Carlson and I knew we would be transferred, so he should be doing great.
Basically for the rest of the week, we had to move a couple of missionaries to some new apartments. But one of the apartments we moved was some Sisters in Lyon who probably have the nicest apartment now in the whole mission. Sisters have it easy.
After getting done with that, the next day we took off to go down to Tarbes to do their move. We had like two and a half days to drive 6 hours there, move them and make it back another 6 hours in time for a baptism Saturday morning for one of the Chinese investigators. The whole move down in Tarbes wasn't too bad but I think the highlight of it all was that we brought some bikes for them to use down there and so later one night, we went looking for some food on the bikes and happened to find a skate park type of thing and went and had fun on that for a little while. Yeah don't worry, neither of us got hurt.
We luckily made it back by Friday night to go to the baptism. What's cool about being in Lyon was that all the missionaries come to support anyone getting baptized and so there were over twenty missionaries there for it.
That morning we got transfer calls and like I said before, I'm going up to Gap for a couple months. The moving companionship of Wilson and Carlson was actually dissolved because President needed us more doing teaching than doing moving. Actually, most of the office Elders were transferred out of the office because our mission is getting smaller and there just is not the need to have so many Elders in the office. So I will be training a bleu (that's what greenies are called) in Gap.
For the rest of that Saturday, we basically just packed and then one of the senior couples invited everyone from the office to eat dinner because they knew so many of us were leaving. It's always fun to have all the senior couples making fun of the young kids as they call us. Then Sunday was church, more packing and then getting to talk to the family for Mother's Day. Happy super late Mother's Day to anyone out there. A week late is still acceptable right?
That about wraps it up. I hope everyone is enjoying their summer and luckily it hasn't gotten too hot here yet. Which it probably won't since I'm hanging out on the top of a glacier for the summer! Catch you guys next week!
P-day with the Lyon Zones
The last of the France Lyon Mission moving companionships. We will go on the record books as being the final guys. Saved the best for last.
The going away dinner : (
Poor Elder Mahaffey. He doesn't know what he is going to do without us.
Gap here I come!
Enjoying the view from the balcony of our apartment