I am here! In Korea. I know. What the heck! I think this has been the longest week of my life. I love Korea so much! But it is also ridiculously hard. This is easily the hardest thing I have ever done. I know it is worth it though!
My mission president and his wife are wonderful. I am so excited to get to know them more. My companion is Sister Lee Handa. She is WONDERFUL. I love her so much. She is a native Korean from Dacheon. She doesn't speak too much English, but enough and I enough Korean for us to communicate well. We have a fun time together, but also work hard. We end up running a lot to get to bus stops and subways on time. Sister Lee is so kind, and makes me food and things all the time. I don't think I have had a normal meal the whole time here without fish or kimchi or something in it.
My area is Gyeongsan. It is part city, part country, and is really beautiful. Our branch is awesome, and I think there are about 28 members or so. They are very kind to us. We meet with some of them often, and eat food with some of the grandmothers. Food is HUGE here. Seriously. We are eating all the time. However, while I have had some really weird stuff already, I have been blessed and have eaten and liked it all. You know that picture of the octopus? Yeah, I ate that. And it was good. The Gift of Tongues applies in many ways.
We have a couple of investigators right now, and most of them we are teaching English to. That is a huge part of our work. English class is really important. I love teaching it though, and love the investigators. We are hoping that we will be able to get a baptism this or next month. We will see!
There are two Elders in our area as well, and we spend a lot of time with them. One of them was with me in the MTC, and they are really fun. I think my favorite thing to do is English proselyting, which is where we stand out on the street with sticker signs for English class and try to get people to sign up. We have actually been really successful, and it is the greatest thing when we find someone that seems interested in the gospel as well. We have some pretty fun appointments for this week. There is also another sister I am meeting for the first time this week, who is Swedish, but our lessons will be mostly in English and a little Korean. Her name is Leanna, and we are going to try to ask her to be baptized. I am excited to teach in English!
Korean is HARD. I am really glad that I am with a native, and I have already learned so much with having Korean coming at me all the time. However, I still cannot communicate very well yet, and have a hard time with the Busan dialect. I can understand my companion pretty well, but many of the locals are harder. Pray for me! I will be working hard.
My least favorite thing to do is definitely proselyting on the Subway or when we are on the bus. I thought I would be fine talking to people, but I get scared and have a hard time getting myself to say anything. Even then, I can't say very much. Aigo. Hard work to be coming. I know it will get better, though as I learn to get out of my comfort zone and know more Korean.
I have met some Elders that said that they heard about Tristan, and one even said he saw him. Everyone is really excited about that. Another thing about Korea. Everyone stares at me. A lot. They love to touch my hair and tell me that I am pretty, even if I am sweating and disgusting. It is really humid here, and quite hot. I am getting used to it, though!
Aghh I am almost out of time. More info to come next week, I promise! While this is the hardest thing I have ever done and there have been many times where I just wanted to get up and go home to my family, I felt comforted. I know this is where I am supposed to be. I feel closer to the Savior, especially when I feel so alone. This is His work. While it is hard, I am not going to fail Him. I am going to go out, and spread His gospel, helping others see the light and have that happiness. I know this is the true gospel. I love it!
I love you all so much! Thank you so much for all you have done for me. It may seem like nothing, but it means the world to me here. I love you! Stay strong!