Monday, April 3, 2017

Birthdays all Around! (and lots of pictures) - Weeks 94 and 95

Hello. Another quick update from the middle of France.

One of the senior couples that works in the office are from Australia and they invited us over to eat with them last week. They actually had just come from serving in Chalon so they gave me a nice update of everyone and of everything that was going on up there. They're actually converts and they told us their whole story and I think the coolest part was when he told us his the story of when he was called as a Stake President. He had some pretty sweet experiences with some apostles and the things about the temple since the temple is in his area. Basically I think we need to take a trip down to Australia one day because they make it sound really cool. Not that it wasn't already. 

A few weeks ago, a member here was talking about how he had found some basketball hoops that were shorter then normal ones and he wanted to go play on them. And of course, being tall and being told of these said hoops that I could dunk on, I was down for it. We went and found the hoops on P-day and played for a few hours and since everyone was shorter then me, everyone on my team just threw the ball up in the air and I would go and get it and dunk it. Pretty awesome!

My birthday was on March 19th and I got pretty good at just kind of casually dropping the information to people that it was my birthday and not being that guy who just tells everyone they meet it's their birthday and it worked out pretty well for me. The weekend of my birthday was full of free food. Between eating with missionaries a few times, going out to lunch with some investigators and having a member from the other ward take us out, it turned out being pretty great. Even the Sister missionaries brought a cake to church to celebrate and made party hats to go along with it. And everyone who we have been working with came to church that day which almost never happens.
We also got to teach all the young men in the ward about what it's like to be a missionary. Being in France, there aren't as many people who go on missions and come back to the wards so it was pretty fun explaining to them what life is like as a missionary. "Yeah we get up at 6:30 am everyday." "No we don't get to take a Sunday nap." "Yeah we do go and talk to strangers all day on the street." 

My mission President's birthday was actually the day after mine and so he invited all the missionaries in Lyon to go to lunch on Monday. Before we all went to lunch, we went on a tour around the old part of Lyon by an older ward member and he explained the history of the area and took us through all these passages and tunnels through buildings. It was pretty cool. And then afterwards, we all had lunch and President even bought us ice cream. What a nice man. 

Later on in the week we had a Zone Conference and I had my interview with President Brown. I was able to ask him about how he decided what to study in college since that's basically what I've been thinking about lately. Sometimes you just think these people who have had a lot of success in life had it easy but usually it's the opposite. It's always enlightening talking to President.

The next day for Zone Conference was fun. Zone Conferences are always a good time to be with other people and friends that I don't get to see very often and just sit around and listen and talk for a while. We also had a District Meeting where we took a field trip out this place called the Confluence in Lyon. You could just look it up and see some of the pretty cool pictures I would imagine. That's where the Only Lyon sign and where all the pictures come from. We then went and made French toast (shout-out to Trevor for the best district meeting meal idea ever) and of course everyone loved it.

I thought my moving days were over but a counselor in the bishopric asked us to go and talk to this family who was moving and so we spent one morning packing this huge van for a family in our ward who is moving to Bordeaux. At least I was well practiced. It's always cool being in a small city in the French countryside. 

And of course we just watched General Conference all weekend. It's always funny since it's all the members are together watching it and then all the missionaries are usually sitting in some small room together all watching it in English. It's just not the same when it's not in the original language. 

Happy Spring!

Zone Conference

The District

Happy Birthday to me, Happy Birthday to me...

President's birthday lunch and tour