Monday, July 22, 2013

Bang Kapi Letter--July 22, 2013

I want to add that the subject line for this email was "I really like salads."

Can you believe that it is almost August? I certainly cannot. Where did July go?   Everything here is going well, do not worry. Life has been great and I absolutely love Thailand so much. The people here are amazing. 

So at the beginning of this week, all of us new Thais in Bangkok had to gather so sign our work permits. We were told to gather last Monday morning and to get to the place before 8. I love train of command here in Thailand but sometimes it can be frustrating. Like when we are heading to the place and it is almost 8 (we had to wake up at 5:30) and we get a call that the activity was moved to tomorrow. Someone forgot to tell our district. Yup. Oh well, I didn't mind because it meant I got to see some MTC people (some people were told and others weren't) twice. That was an amazing blessing I didn't know I needed. It was so nice to see the people I had gotten so close to and had spent 9 weeks with. 

Tuesday we taught English. I taught the advanced class by myself. All things considered, it went pretty well. Tomorrow will be easier now that I actually now what I am doing. They like learning slang so if anyone has any good slang or anything like that, I would much appreciate it. All I could think of last time was "What's up?" Pathetic, I know. :) 

On Tuesday I also taught one of my first lessons by myself. Well, not totally by myself, there were two female members there. But yeah, after activities like Sports Night (every Friday), English Class (every Tuesday), or Church, we try to teach all our investigators that came to that activity. This means that we have to split up. It's a good experience and my teaching is improving. It is also forcing me to improve my Thai if I want to understand any of the questions or comments. It was nerve-wracking at first but it's really good. I'm enjoying it. Tuesday night I taught Sister เจน (pronounced Jane) about the Atonement and about who Christ is for us (meaning our Savior). I couldn't teach much due to my limited vocabulary but I could tell her what I knew and what I felt. It was a good experience. 

Speaking of investigators, I absolutely love them. We have one dater and two other progressing investigators. We have other investigators but they are "progressing". Jane (only two years younger than myself) is one of the progressing investigators and whenever she comes to an activity at the church and sees us, she asks, "so when are you going to teach me?" or "Where are you going to teach me?" It's so nice having the investigators wanting to learn and asking us to teach them instead of us having to chase them down. We have been very blessed. :)

Wednesday was a pretty normal day. We taught, we ate, we biked, we walked, we talked to people, we had fun. Actually, now that I think about it, two amazing things happened on Wednesday. First, we went to the mall (to make copies, get dinner, and to tract). They have a pond in the middle of the mall. This pond has huge(!) fishes in it. IT WAS SO COOL! There were also parrots. Parrots! Thailand rocks! The other thing I realized: salads are absolutely divine. We went to Sizzlers and just got the salad bar. Soooooo delicious. When basically all the food here is rice or noodle based, salads are heaven sent. Soooo tastey. Sister Slaugh was soooo happy afterwards. On Monday we were at a market and met a lady that sold salads at that night market every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. You can guess where Sister Orchard and Sister Slaugh will be on those nights. And the lady made her own fruit dressings. So good. :) That night we had correlation meeting. This ward is really good at its correlation meetings. They know what they are doing and they are great at it. I am so spoiled to be serving at this ward. So spoiled :)

Thursday we had a switch-off with Sister Training Leaders (kinda like the Zone Leaders but for Sisters). So much fun! I was with Sister Wiganda (a native Thai with amazing English). She knows Lorri because Lorri served in Sister Wiganda's home branch. Sister Wiganda's nickname is Minney. It was a lot of fun serving with her and learning from her. She only has two transfers left in her mission. She is serving in Sinnakarin so that is where we are. I think that is her home branch too because her sister (like her actual sister) lives the floor above the Sister's apartment. Crazy, right? Can you imagine serving in the same branch as your family? Oh, so I had an interesting experience during that switch-off. I was sitting next to this guy (about 60 or 70 years old) on one of Thailand's modes of transportation (I don't know how to spell it). We started talking and he asked me why I was in Thailand. I said that I was here to teach anyone who was interested about Jesus Christ and I showed the man a picture of Christ. His response? "I'll follow Christ." I was just like..."what?" kinda like how Dad said he was when someone was actually interested after a couple months of no one being interested. So the man and I started talking about Christ. Apparently the man had learned about Christ when he was young. I invited him to follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized. He accepted. The Sisters in Sinnakarin are now going to teach him. It's just a strong witness to me that Heavenly Father truly is preparing His children to hear His gospel. These people are ready. It's so cool to see them grow too. I saw Sister Ning (another one of our investigators) pray for the first time. And I see the change in Jane as she truly believes that Christ was her Savior. A mission truly is an amazing experience. I love it--every aspect of it--so very much. 

Friday I returned to Sister Orchard. That night we went to Sports Night after getting a salad for later. Sports Night was a lot of fun. It's nice to still be able to play volleyball. I love the ward members here. Sister Ning came and brought her children. The ward was really welcoming to her and her family. The youth are also amazing here. They are so much fun. 

Saturday was a normal day as well. We had to go the church around 4pm for Sister Orchard to practice the piano. The Bishop asked her to accompany the choir. The song is "I am a Child of God" but the Bishop arranged it himself. Apparently the Bishop used to be in a band or something like that. It's pretty cool. He's a fun guy and is really friendly. It was fun watching her play the piano. Admittedly, I got a little homesick watching and listening to her play some of John Schmidt's songs but that's okay. 

Sunday was good as per usual. Sister Jane came to church and brought two friends - Sister Jeep and ... Kartoon. Sister Jane was introduced to the church by Sister Aye so Jeep and Kartoon are her friends as well. Those four always come to Sports Night so we know Jeep and Kartoon well. One thing I love about the Thai language - the word for her or him is the same thing. So with Kartoon, I don't have to worry about figuring out what to call khaw (Thai word for him/her) because I can just say khaw. Kartoon doesn't know what gender khaw is either. Jeep and Kartoon are great though and I love them. Those four are a lot of fun. :) Sadly Sister Ning did not come to church. She was planning on it (even showed us what she was planning on wearing) but I guess something came up or something like that. Oh well. There is always next week. :) 

I went to Young Women's with Jane, Jeep, Kartoon, and Aye. We learned about the temple. I was able to show my temple recommend and explain why I love the temple. The Thai people really really want a temple. I really really want them to get one too. 

And now we are back to Monday. We are making cookies today because we weren't able to last time. There isn't really much to do here (in this area of Thailand) on P-days besides the mall and baking. We'll keep on looking though. 

Palmyra sounds like so much fun! I really glad you all got to go. When we were teaching Sister Ning about Joseph Smith, we showed her the Restoration video. It's cool having visited those locations. The video was in Thai. Let me tell you, it is so weird watching a movie of white people but hearing the Thai language. So weird. I think that's why people laugh whenever I speak to them in Thai. One, I probably have an accent. Two, it's just so weird. They are always surprised hearing us speak in Thai. Their reactions are funny. :)

Thank you to Mom for the bike name. This week I will send a picture of Morticia to all of you. She's a very good bike. Spray-painting bikes is not mandatory but it is suggested because they are more likely to be stolen if they look new. 

Speaking of family, can someone tell me where Uncle Leslie served? And Lorri too. It would be fun to see if I serve in the same areas. 

The trek dolls look really cute. Hopefully you get them all back and you can use them again. 

To Dad's comment about monks, we see them a lot here (not surprisingly), especially in the morning. I was warned not to touch them. Apparently if you touch them, they are no longer allowed to be monks - or something like that.

Well, I love you all very much and I hope all is well :) Much love!!! =D
~Sister Slaugh (ซิสเฅอร์ ซลอ) 

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