ABOUT THE SISTERS: My companion's name is Sister Murri. She is great! Oldest of 5 kids, plays harp, did academic decathalon in HS, and sings alto beautifully! She is so dedicated to learning the language of Chinese and the language of love. We get along really well, which is good because we have to stay within sight and sound of each other at all times, except the bathroom, of course! We room with the trio companionship. Sister Williams: 21, JR in college, majoring in neuroscience. Sister Knight: 19, played basketball and ran cross country and very funny. Sister Keung: 19, from New Zealand, has a great accent and is super chill and funny. I just love them all! We pray together at night in Chinese. President and Sister Nally are great. I love the MTC!
Relief Society on Sunday was all together in the auditorium. Sister Janice Kapp Perry spoke to us---how cool is that!?!
One of the hardest things we are trying to do is we are not supposed to refer to others as "dude", "man", or "guys". You don't realize how often you say "guys" until you aren't supposed to! Yeah, that's hard.
MY ROUTINE is really boring to describe but here's my day:
6:30 wake up, gym, breakfast or service, gym, breakfast.
9:50-12:50 classroom (personal/companion language study)
1:30-5:45 Classroom (computer language study program, teach an investigator)
6:30-9:30 Classroom (gospel and language study)
Back to residence, write in journal, brush teeth prayers
That's it everyday. Except Tuesday nights class is replaced with a devotional. Exciting huh?! Yep. that little brick walled room is where many memories will take place!
~We were learning the verb zuo which means to sit, or to make, or to do. Elder Dethloff thought for a second and asked "What is someone tells me to sit on a cake?" We were all confused. "You know, they meant for me to make a cake." We all laughed so hard.
~Slang is strongly discouraged so once when we were studying and one of the sisters was stressed and frustrated when suddenly Elder Hughes said, "hashtag swerve", and it was just so random but perfect to lighten the mood!
~At lunch we were talking about how much time we spend in the classroom and we forget we're even in Provo, it's like we're on our own planet. One Elder said, "It's like prison...in a good way... A spiritual prison....SPIRIT PRISON! We are in Spirit Prison! We all laughed a lot!
ABOUT THE ELDERS:
Elder Stewart plays piano, did musicals in HS and has a background in Chinese because his dad served in Taiwan and he has an adopted brother from China.
Elder Mangleson took a semester of Chinese at BYU before coming on the mission. He's our District Leader.
Elder Dethloff (Det-loff) has been nicknamed Elder Dental Floss. He is funny and he is companions with Elder Hughes.
Elder Hughes is a great kid...guy...Elder! First of all he converted at 16 yrs old. Strong testimony, and funny. He and Elder Dethloff both rap and beat box well and made up an "I'm a Missionary" rap. Hughes loves BMX bikes and scooters. Get this; growing up he noticed a problem with scooter handlebars. Steel handles too heavy and aluminum too flimsy. He drew up a plan for solid aluminus bars that were strong but light weight, and SOLD the idea to a company. How cool is that?
I am having such a good time! It's definitely a refining experience- fire and pressure, but with the Lord's help we will all make it to Taiwan with a bit of language experience and hopefully be able to speak.
I love you all! I'm so glad I made this choice to serve the Lord. A friend of mine said," Missionary work is some of the hardest work we'll ever do, but it is also a ton of fun!" We only have to focus on one thing, and that's God. I love my companion, I love my District, I love Christ's gospel!
Love, Sima Jiemei