1. There is no word in the Korean language for "you." Very interesting. At first I didn't know what to call people! But now it makes sense and just flows :)
Welcome to Kimchi making season!!
And I hate to admit this, but I am officially not American. I forgot about my favorite holiday!!! I forgot about Thanksgiving! I'll get to that later. Also, it's snowing right now!!!!! Ahh so cool and exciting!!! It's so pretty outside! :)
So last Monday was absolutely crazy! We were walking around and talking to people on the street when we started talking to a cute mom with her daughter. We talked for so long! (Super unusual, people are always so busy so usually they just run away) She doesn't like religion because of how corrupt it often is (VERY common thing for people to say here. I guess there's a lot of problems with the Christian churches being corrupt so a lot of people are very cautious.) Anyways, we talked to her and she was so kind :) THEN. We're walking and I say hello to this lady and she freaks out! She says "You have to meet my friends! You have to meet my friends!" So we walk and talk to her for a really long time. Then we got to where she was going.... The World School for Baristas. (Or something like that) Haha oh my gosh! We go in and there's about 4 or so men all working on computers. It was kind of like a little break room next to the company. They're all coffee engineers- what a coincidence. So funny! Of course they were offering us all of these different kinds of coffee they were making. But very kind when we said no thanks! We told them about why we're in Korea and about our beliefs. So cool! The lady wants to meet again. She was so funny. She had turned to one of the men and said "Hey! You don't have a religion, right? Ok then come over here! These girls can teach you." He mostly just laughed but they sat there and listened and we all talked! So crazy! She gave us food when we left.
Tuesday- last day for Sis. S and I to be companions! We visited people during the day and then had FHE. Sis Pope's last one in the country! So sad for her :( Bishop bought pizza and there were a few people so she could say goodbye. Very fun!
Wednesday- TRANSFERS. Ah I was so nervous to meet my new companion! All the missionaries go to the same area and meet our companion there so there were a ton of people. Saw most of the people from my MTC district! Very fun. Sis. Brown has had a new companion every transfer! So this is her third companion already! So crazy. Anyways, I met my new companion and she is incredible!!! Such a hardworker!! Also, she's a model. (Ok not technically....) But she is so, so pretty!! Sis. 안정민 (ahn-jong-meen). Our first exchange: Me- "Hi!" Her- "Ahh I don't speak English!" Haha yay! It's ok I'm only supposed to be speaking Korean anyway! After we got back, we'd had an appointment but she punked :( So we were going to street contact and walk around for about 4 hours! After about 45 minutes, she turned and said "I'm so sorry, but can we go back?" I found out that she'd been throwing up for the past few days and was so sick! I feel so bad she never said anything! So we went back and she fell asleep immediately for a couple of hours. We had another appointment for that night too but she punked as well :/ It's ok though! Maybe they'll be able to meet another time :)
Thursday, my companion was feeling all better. Thursday... Oh ya!!! WE MADE KIMCHI!!! Oh so so fun!!!! Making kimchi is called "김장" (kim-jong). We went to this church about an hour and a half away and there were a bunch of volunteers. I guess they do it every year and it's a bunch of different religions that come together to do it. So short speeches at the beginning from about 4 people- all different religions! Super cool! Even had a legit monk. (Is that bad to say? I don't know. But he was in the proper dress and everything!) We actually made it really fast, I guess. You have to do it outside because it's so messy (we were covered in it!) and there were a bunch of different tables set up. Haha, the ladies at my table were so funny, they kept feeding me kimchi the whole time we were making it! I would send pictures but I left my camera today :/ Next week! Then a lunch together. That night is when I realized that I've forgotten my true identity... We were talking to people and I went over and started talking to this lady who knew some English. She asked what I'd done today and I said made kimchi! She said I must really love Korea if that's what I did today. I just said, "Ya it's very fun!" Not totally sure what she meant when she said that. Then she asked what my plans were for the night and I said I didn't really have any and she said not even a big dinner! I said no... Then she asked if I was even going to eat chicken. I was so confused! And then she said, "Well if you don't have plans I wish you could come over because my family is having a Thanksgiving dinner at my house but I live so far!" And that is when I realized what day it was. It was 7 at night!!! So crazy. But I ate a lot of very delicious Korean food so it basically is the same, right?? A very fun day though.
Friday... Weekly planning! Oh man took so long because we went through all our records so Sis. Ahn could look at them. Took 4 hours to plan! After, Sis. Ahn and I went to visit 김명옥 but she wasn't home! Super shocking. She's always home! Bummer. Next week! Oh by the way, it was raining all day! So fun :) It was Sis. Seegmiller's birthday, too! So we went out for dinner to a small little restaurant. There was a Christmas tree!!! Love seeing Christmas decorations!! So fun :) Then we surprised Sis. S at the church with a little 5 min party. Sis. Ahn and I had got these Choco pies (cookies) and threw cream on top... Look we made a cake! Haha oh the life of a poor missionary. After the two of us visited an old investigator. Oh man, I feel so badly for her. She is just.... so depressed. She lives along in a two-room apartment (not even a bathroom, it's a community one outside for the whole apartment. Actually, super common though) but has a dog and a cat. Her son died about 13 years ago at age 27, I think? She NEVER talks to anyone or goes outside. She hates church and doesn't believe in a God. Quite interesting she wanted us over. But we were so happy to be there!! We just want to help her in anyway. Last time missionaries visited I guess she said never come back but she really wants us to, so that's good!! She has a... very negative outlook on life. But understandably. She also drinks a ton. She says she can't sleep at night so she drinks a lot and then she can. So sad :( I'll keep you posted on her!
Saturday we searched around for less actives! Met some very interesting people :) Then English class! Always fun. Then we'd made an advent calendar for our ward- just a calendar with a nice scripture for each day until Christmas. Also, it rained all day!
Sunday- church! Our district taught for the first hour and it went really well! Did a skit. My companion, Sis Seegmiller's new companion (길수려 girl-su-reo), and Elder Helsloot's new companion all talked in church. And craziest thing!!! Remember 유옥렬? (you-ong-reor) she's the one we taught that wanted to learn more and be baptized but then dropped off the face of the earth? We called her Friday and she actually answered, and then we called her Sunday and she came to church!!!! It was so great!!! She came to sacrament and stayed for the lunch after. And then we taught her with a girl from our ward!! (김윤하 kim-youn-ha) It was so great!! Then we walked to a house about and hour and a half or so away and visited a less active. We visited her about 3 weeks ago. She's so kind!!
It's been such a fun week! My new companion is WONDERFUL and it's so fun still living with Sis. Seegmiller! Also, the weather has been absolutely beautiful! I'm so happy and I hope you are too!
P.S. the website is www.urikorea.org for the organization we made the kimchi with! Don't know if there's anything on it, but that's what it is!