Përshëndetja from your favorite fringo (greenie)!
This was easily THE craziest week of my life. I'll start from the beginning... On Wednesday morning we left the MTC for Tirana, the capital of Albania! I was amazed when we landed. I knew the area was pretty from pictures I saw online, but the pictures don't do it justice - it is simply GORGEOUS here. The Balkan Mountains surround us, there's perfectly warm weather, palm trees... I felt like I was on vacation. I felt so lucky to be moving to this area for the next 18 months. That first day we were whisked around the city (I must mention their driving here is nuts - no lanes, cutting, double parking.. an American's nightmare). We did paperwork business and had interviews with President Weidmann. I love this man, he's amazing and I feel so privileged to have him as my mission president. I'm excited to work with him further! Then they said.... "Alright, time to go street contacting!" That's when you approach people on the streets, introduce them to the religion, and get phone numbers. I had a mini heart attack but it went fine. As we walked around there are stray dogs everywhereeee so that was pretty weird. I could hear them all through the night, too. We stayed the night at President Weidmann's home.
The next day (Friday) we got our first transfer assignments! We all sat in a meeting and received our first assignments along with our training companions. I was called to... PRISHTINA, KOSOVO! Ahhh! I was extremely scared when I got that call, not going to lie. To be honest for the past month I had basically been praying "I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord.... except Kosovo". I was scared because they speak a dialect in Kosovo called Gheg, which sounds very different from the dialect I had learned in the MTC - Tosk. I have a tough time understanding people in Tosk, let alone Gheg. But I kept reminding myself that who the Lord calls, he qualifies. I took the next four-hour bus ride north with my new companion, Motra Henderson.
I've been here in Prishtina for three days now. I can say that God knows what He's doing & He sent me here for a reason. I learned a valuable lesson this week. This isn't my mission - It's His. And luckily I had the wrong attitude about getting sent up here. It's truly awesome. Sure it's hard for me to understand the people... but that kind of comprehension isn't going to come overnight. And God won't let the language barrier inhibit me from teaching what I need to.
Motra Henderson and my district have been a huge strength and a blessing for me here. For example, as many of you know general conference was this weekend. Since it was in Albanian my district took turns translating small summaries of the each talk throughout the whole thing. I hadn't asked them to do this, but they were willing and eager to translate it for me. That meant a lot. The ward here is really strong, too. I'm glad to be here & I have a good feeling about what is to come. 'Till next week!
|View from the mission office :)|
|Flight shotz. Right before we landed in Tirana.|
|Last day with my first district and comp, Motra Lyng (TEARS)|
|First lunch in Prishtina with the one, the only, the legendary Motra Henderson.|