Man. I woke up on the 21st and realized that I only had a year left of being out here, serving in Finland. That was a huge wake-up, convenient giving the fact that I was trying to do just that. Wake up. Okay, moving on.
There was a lot of crazy this week. More lessons canceled from sickness, but we got to keep in good contact with them regardless. I also fell sick on the Friday, the day before Juhannus, which was unfortunate for our week. But, I was told to rest and get better, and I've done so. So we're all good now.
President Watson actually came and interviewed us on the day on Juhannus. That was fun to have him in our apartment, so glad that we had taken the time to do a deep-cleaning before he told us he was coming! He was very grateful for the work we are trying to do, and it was a great inspiration to 'keep it up', as the kids say nowadays.
Yeah, that's just about it... I don't have any plans for my year-mark on the 25th, but it'll probably be greeted with not more than a few reminiscings. And maybe us going out to eat. Who knows.
To the Q's!
How was your week?
Overall, I'd say it went okay. Not busy, but okay. We have 3 people that are likely potentials that we are meeting this week, so the work may start to pick up yet again, and the people that are already investigating are hopefully recovering. So, it was good, but I'm looking forward to it getting better this week.
Have you seen the new Mission Home?
Not yet, although they are officially moved into it. So the address is now that. Yippee!
My family is visiting other family right now, so here are a few questions from them!
How long has it been since you ate ice cream? (Wyatt) (He is dishing up everyone ice cream right now!)
Wow. Hold up. I used to get ice cream in Porvoo, but I haven't here, 'cuz they don't have the cheap brands... I guess, yeah, about 2 months ago. Man, I need to buy some ice cream... Finnish Ice Cream is REALLY good, too! Aino is the best brand, in my opinion. Which is why it's 5€ a liter...
What color is your car? (Tina) (She spent a lot of time in her car today!)
It is silver-gray. There is actually the same model usage for all across Finland, perhaps even all across Europe, so now that I've had the basically the same car for ~ a year straight, I'm likely the most qualified in Finland among the missionaries to say how to operate different portions of the car. I even know where the hidden USB ports for music are... Which most people find out because of inheriting it from someone who knows. But I figured it out myself. So I'm gonna pretend like it's rare information.
Have you seen any animals lately? (Grandma Schill) (two zoos in three days may have influenced this question!)
Rabbits. Wild rabbits are abundant in Finland. I shouldn't even really say rabbits - they are the dog-sized hares that could seriously do some damage to you if you tried to catch it. I've never been tempted too, don't worry... Also, lots of ducks. I fed them the other week. Haven't seen the Canadian Geese in a while, maybe they got directions finally.
What is the major industry in Finland? What careers do people have? (Grandpa Schill) (He's retired. Other people's work is interesting now!)
I guess most of the jobs here revolve around engineering of one kind or another... Since Nokia is a Finnish Company, that's a big one. Lots of various plants as well, for mass production, it seems. At least in Lohja. I honestly don't know! A Google search is needed for this one...
What did you learn this week?
Hmm. I have been studying a lot about the attitudes that we can approach the gospel with, heavily influenced by that John Bytheway talk, Get An Attitude! Heroic Examples from the Book of Mormon. I think the main things that I've learned are about how an attitude that asks, "How bad can I be?", cannot really learn what it is that most needs learning. It is really sad when you see people that are in and of the world. But, that is the glorious thing about the gospel - provided you keep at it long enough, hopefully that attitude will change, and rather than going through motions in an attempt to 'get by', you will actually see how things in the gospel actually help you. It's an obvious, trite little thing, but we all overlook it at one point or another when we do something wondering how much of it we don't have to do.
What did you teach someone this week?
We taught the Restoration to an investigator that has a baptismal date here. She was passed down by the former missionaries here (sans contact/address info, thank goodness a member remembered where she lives), and although she has been eagerly learning, we found out that despite what the Elders had written (what little they had), she hadn't yet been fully taught the Restoration. Bit of an oversight. But, the lesson went well, and she is very eager to attend church once she finds a way to do so. Because of the long distances. Sigh. One day, there will be a ward here...
What gospel principle has been on your mind lately?
Well, this is a good one... I think the principle of Brotherly Kindness has been bopping around a while. Which is weird, 'cuz that isn't really a big one. It sorta gets absorbed by Charity in general. But, still, I've been thinking about it, so there you go. I guess I've been looking at it from the viewpoint of having a companion, because I've been lucky enough to have had some pretty good ones, and I haven't made outright enemies of any yet, I think... So, I just want to make certain that my good feelings about the people I am going to serve with remains. Thank goodness, the last couple companions have made getting along with them very easy! Having a blast with Elder Greciano, we've started crafting a story together that is getting pretty awesome. Who knows what'll come of that.
Have you played any pranks on your companion?
No, I haven't! I haven't even tried to give him an incorrect Finnish phrase and say that it means something else, although I don't think I could trick him even if I wanted...
Seriously, though, pranks haven't happened this change at all... That's kinda a weird thought.
Has he played any pranks on you?
Also, nay. We might start it up if we serve together again, who knows... No tricks yet, though.
What is something funny that happened recently?
I heard a Finn use, without my knowing him or me prompting it, the phrase, "Palaa poroksi". That. Was. Hilarious. If it 'goes up in smoke' or more literally 'burns into a reindeer', it will 'palaa poroksi'. A Finn that we started talking to on the street began talking about his perception of judgement day (we really need to start watching out who exactly we start talking to...) and said that the common perception point that he has with most religions (according to him, I'm scared if everyone actually thinks this way) is that everyone will... wait for it... 'palaa poroksi'. I had to try so hard not to laugh at him outright. Not really because he was wrong or anything, just that I knew what that idiom meant, and it was just too funny.
Well, that's about all. I can't think of anything else to say, other than I hope that you all are doing well! Be safe, write y'all next week!
Vanhin David Milligan