Thursday, October 24, 2013

Week 6 & 7

Here I am sitting in the stake center (also our ward building) in Germany and typing this. It is so surreal that I actually am here. Also, warning, this is a German keyboard and the Z and Y are switched, so if I make a mistake, I'm sorry! This past week has been the most ridiculous week of my life! 
I had to make a list of things to write home about because
I knew I would forget something. 

Last meal at the MTC....or so we thought....
So let's start with leaving the MTC.....

We had to report to the travel office at 3:30am. So my companions and I woke up at 2 so we could finish packing and weigh our luggage. We waited at the travel office for an hour until the bus came to take us to the Front-runner. We took the Front-runner to the airport and 
checked in our baggage. 

Just chillin at the airport...for 5 hours...
One of my suitcases weighed 67 lbs. Let's not talk about it.....We sat around for about an hour and then boarded our plane which was headed to Dallas (where we would have a 4 hour layover). We sat on the plan for like 30 min and then they said something was wrong with a warning system or something like that. So about 45 min later (I was totally sleeping on my little flip down tray) they announced that the flight was cancelled and that we would need to go pick up our luggage and find another flight. Oh the joys of being a missionary and having no way to call anyone. 

On our way to Germany
Special times....Well our travel leader called the MTC and they were trying to find a different flight or something.  About 5 hours later....we found out that we would be going back to the MTC for the night. We were so close to leaving!!!! We hauled all our luggage onto the trax and headed back to the MTC where they found us some random room to stay in for the night. We were required to go to the devotional. By this time we were all zombies! Barely awake! Luckily, the devotional was Elder Oaks. That was pretty cool. Too bad I could barely stay awake.

...the next morning we reported to the travel office at 4:30 am and we took all our luggage back onto the Front-runner and checked in for our flight. 

On the Front-runner to the airport the second time!
I got to see Mckenna Gordon in the airport. She was leaving that day from her mission to go home! Oh my! It was so good to see her! Our plane made it to our stop to Atlanta (Thank goodness!!) and we had about 10 minutes to get on our flight to Frankfurt. 

The flight was barely full...YAY! So Sister Hamner and I totally spread out for the 9 hour flight. It was about 3 in the morning on the plane and Sister Hamner and I looked around and everyone was asleep. We could barely sleep. We felt like Rocket Man...when the monkey takes his sleeping chamber and he is awake for 8 months! hahah!! 
We literally got 30 minutes of sleep on that whole flight.....

My first meal in healthy! I look tired....
We landed in Frankfurt, made it through customs, got our luggage, and was greeted by our mission president, his wife, the APs, and all the trainers for that transfer. They just grabbed my luggage for me and we took a bus to the mission office. Since we arrived a day later than we were supposed to, the mission had about 5 min with each of us to interview us. 

President Schwarz is so nice! 
He doesn't know very much English but he can understand pretty much all we say. He said he spent all night talking to our pictures to figure out which trainer we should have. He is so funny! We spent about 4 hours at the mission office and found out our trainers and area. 

My trainer and I . Sister Kearl!!
My trainer is Sister Kearl from Colorado. She has been on her mission for about 7 months. She is so nice!! I think we will really get along. 

This is the only pic I got on my first Sunday.
We were assigned to Dortmund which is a pretty large city in the northwestern area of the mission. We had to take a 5 hour train ride from Frankfurt to get there. I was pretty dead on the train! We were about an hour away when Sister Kearl got a phone call that our apt had flooded. What the?! So we took my luggage and we stayed at the District Leader's apt. 
That was weird. I don't think many sister missionaries can say they've slept in an elder's bed.....

Outside our apt.
Our study area. I like our apt. It's kind of small but really nice.
There are 6 missionaries in Dortmund. There's the zone leaders: Elder Kent and Elder Ogden and then the other elders: Elder Weidmann and Elder Schmidt. We see them a lot. We all attend the same ward. Elder W and Elder S are both native German speakers. Elder S got here the same day as me. He does a lot of translating for me since his English is pretty good. He reminds me a lot of Thomas who stayed with the Assmus family. 

Breaking boards in the Dortmund zone.
The next morning we had zone training with about 30 missionaries. I felt bad because I was falling asleep. I blame jet lag. We did this activity where we wrote the things that are holding us back on a board and then we karate chopped the board in half. Totally broke my board. Strength of a tiger! 

Later that day I had my first appt. with an inactive member. She was really nice and was very patient with my German. I'm trying to get used to sparkling water because that is what everyone drinks and offers you. 

The Karate Kid...Broken board. Hollah!
The next morning was Saturday morning. And every Saturday morning a bunch of the missionaries and members and investigators play fußball (soccer). Oh my....I am so bad at soccer but is was fun! A bunch of little German kids were making fun of me! They kept asking if I was American.....I wonder why? 

Later that day sister Kearl and I went on a little adventure to find a member who just moved in. Sister Kearl isn't very confident in her navigating skills and of course I have no idea what to do. So it ended up taking us 1.5 hours to get there. Of course she wasn't home and then 1.5 hours to get home. 
3 hour adventure! It was fun though to kind of see the city. 

Outside our apt in Dortmund
The next day was Sunday! I was excited to see what the ward was like. Sister Kearl told me that we were teaching Young Women's but in the whole ward there is only one young woman. She didn't show we got to be in nursery because they didn't have enough people. The little German kinds are so cute! That lesson was about the only thing I understood the whole day! 

Later in sacrament the Bishop asked me to bear my testimony. I was kind of nervous because my German isn't very good yet. But after church everyone came up and told me my German was actually really good. 
That made me feel good. They might have been lying.....
...but I like to think that Germans don't lie. 

The church building
Later that day we went to a member's house for dinner and guess what she served us?! Yep on my 4th day here I ate cow tongue!! It is so gross. It's just kind of chewy and looks exactly like a tongue. Elder Schmidt was being such a girl about it and almost puked! The lady was just laughing her head off at us. Well now I can say I've eaten cow tongue.....

Yep...cow tongue.
Needless to say....this week has been very strange. We found out this morning that our apartment has a gas leak...special. I'm definitely learning to go with the flow. It's been a learning process. I have never prayed so much in my life before. I am scared to death and I don't know anyone or how to speak to anyone. It's been really hard but I have learned so much about myself. I just pinch myself everyday because I am in Germany!!! Holy Cow! 

Hole in our bathroom (from trying to fix the flood's fixed now...)
Germany is so beautiful especially since it's fall. It smells like an old house and cigarette smoke everywhere. The chocolate and bread is delicious. Good thing we walk a lot. I feel like I'm in a Bourne movie when the police car alarms go off. I've decided that it's just really quiet here. People kind of keep to themselves. I'm learning to love Germany! There's a lot of work to be done. The ward is so small and there are not very many members in the Frankfurt mission. I'm excited to work! 

The walk to church.
Love you all!! Hope all is well! Remember that God has a plan for you! I am learning to rely on the Lord so much! Read Matt.11:28-30!

Sister Madsen

1 comment:

  1. KAYLIE, er Sister Madsen,
    You are in Europe! Holy Smokes! Blame jet lag as much as you can, I've heard it takes 2 weeks to wear off... that's probably not true, but hey. Sounds like you are having so many new adventures! Enjoy the little German streets!