Hello everyone, it’s been a great week (and a half) in Taiwan! We are doing emails super early today so we can have fun after we go to the temple later this morning!
The Daily Grind
So we’ve heard-say that normally Taiwan is supposed to be getting nicer at this time of year, but it’s still abnormally hot and humid. So we just have fun sweatin’ it out on our bikes every time we go out in the middle of the day. I’m grateful I didn’t get here in the middle of the summer though–Sister Apsley says it’s the absolute worst, even worse than it’s been.
I finally got some new skirts that are better for biking, plus the ones I brought from the MTC so I now have an arsenal of skirts for every occasion. Haha.
This week we’ve been pushing to work well with our ward to get referrals and to just have a good relationship with them. So we’ve been going around visiting and calling less-actives and members. It’s been pretty fun and we’re starting to see the fruits of our labors! We’ve been trying to work with our WM leader but he’s been MIA because apparently he’s getting married next month. But we got a call from him last night and apparently he’s been planning this huge ward activity for this Saturday that we didn’t even know about. Where us, the missionaries, will be teaching the members how to be more effective missionaries themselves! It’s gonna be a blast.
I definitely regret not being a better member missionary before my mission. Part of it was just that I had no idea where to begin or what opportunities were available, and the other part is that I was lazy and didn’t really want to put in the effort, I was also a little bit nervous and felt like I didn’t know anyone that would want to hear the gospel. I hate to be the preach-y missionary but I hope y’all are taking some time to make the lives of the missionaries in your ward a little easier by being involved in the work! You will see blessings.
Last Wednesday we went to Taipei so Sister Apsley could go to the doctor. We left in the morning and got to Taipei right around lunch-time. Last week was temple day for the zones in Taipei so we got to see them at the mission home and we snuck into the Jergensen’s house where they feed waffles to the missionaries who had gone to the temple that day. We didn’t eat any waffles but we may have ended up in a few of their pictures. So if/when they post on their blog about it you could see us in the pictures of both weeks 😉 And then we’re going to Taipei later today to go to the temple ourselves so that’s gonna be great! The train ride up there is pretty fun, the views are GORGEOUS and I wish I could take better pictures of them.
Daily Grind Part 2
On Saturday we had dinner with a member in a more rural part of town called xinpu. We biked over there in the late afternoon to do some finding, it’s gorgeous haha but there were so many mosquitos. It’s cool how we live in an area with both city and rice fields–the best of both words, eh?
House Hunters International
Here’s the fun part. You know how we were given an “eviction notice” from the Vatchers on our pristine apartment? Well, this past week we’ve been apartment hunting! Elder Lin from the mission office texts us numbers of landlords he wants us to call and we set up times to look at apartments. We looked at one that wasn’t so clean and wasn’t in a great part of town. And then we looked at one that is SUPER nice. Like, super duper nice. BRAND new. SO clean. OH my goodness. But it was so far away from the chapel. We told Elder Lin we wanted that one but he told us the landlord wasn’t willing to pay taxes so that was a no go. (I think I read somewhere once that the church will only let missionaries stay in places where landlords are honest about tax-paying but tons of people in Taiwan just ignore those laws.)
So we’re probably going to end up staying in this small apartment on the 11th floor of a building RIGHT next to the chapel. It has a really great view of the chapel. Like, a REALLY great view. I’ll have to take some pictures once we move in. The bathrooms are pretty weird and very Taiwanese but it’ll work great! But oh man it will be such a pain moving but it’ll be great.
Power Monday/Power Tuesday
So y’know how I’m doing emails two days late? Yes, that’s because it’s TEMPLE day! On Temple weeks they call the extra Monday and Tuesday “Power Monday” and “Power Tuesday”.
Our Power Monday ended up being SUPER great because we had training from the assistants/Interviews with President! Sister Apsley and I did training with the XinZhu district instead of with our own for some reason so it was a fun afternoon with Sister Richards and Elder Kleine from the MTC, plus our STLs and Zone Leaders. We talked about…asking referrals! So referrals is the HUGE theme of the week. It’s so interesting to be on the missionary side of things instead of the members side.
But because we had training at the XinZhu chapel instead of the ZhuBei stake center we got to go on a cool, scenic 1/2 hour bike ride through some bridges and rice fields along a river. There’s this GIGANTIC water buffalo that lives around that was just chillin’ in the afternoon heat. And there were SO many cool birds, made me think of you, Mom ;). Wish I could have gotten some pictures.
Sister Apsley and I were the last companionship to be interviewed so this was after the training was over and everyone else left. As we were finishing up, President Jergensen was like “well I want to see the apartment you’ll be moving into” so before I knew what was going on, we were riding with President to the small apartment we had scoped out and we were meeting with the Landlord. After admiring the apartment’s view of the chapel and deciding it good to live in, President then had us show him our current apartment. I can’t tell you how surreal it was showing him in, being with him in his car, going up little elevators, etc. Wish we would have cleaned up more that morning haha.
And then to end this little escapade he was like “well where do you guys normally eat” so we showed him the curry place we like to go to and we had dinner with the President! One of the coolest things ever. And then he took us back to Xin Zhu to get our bikes and we had to bike back in the dark. Sister Apsley’s never biked back in the dark from xin zhu so we got lost and had to call the STLs for help haha. They were like “why the heck are you still in xinzhu it’s 7:00 at night” so we got to explain our crazy adventure.
Yesterday, Power Tuesday was pretty fun too–just a crazy district meeting with our crazy quirky district and other such little things.
Hope you all have a great week! Love you!