Monday, October 31, 2016

Duces Elder Mthethwa (Week 11)

Well, as by the title of this email, you can tell that I had to say goodbye to Elder Mthethwa this morning. We dropped him off at the bus station which was pretty sad, elder Mthethwa was such a good guy, and such a hard worker and funny guy, I loved being able to be his companion and am honoured to have been his last comp! but it's all good because for the next few weeks I'll be in a trio with elder miner and elder smith!!! TRIO?! The grass is way green!! Gotta give some credit and a shout out to my cousin Trevor Thompson, that kid is a stud, and I had to use some of his lines from some of his previous emails, love you man! Anyways, I'll be here in a trio for an unknown amount of time until my new companion is chosen and sent here, but I'll be in Swansea for Christmas!  🎄🎄☃️

Before and after I emailed last Monday we went out to city centre, we went shopping and I got a ton of winter clothes stuff, it's pretty nice. Sorry to break the bank dad. We went to a place called Nando's for lunch, it's a really good chicken place. We also went to this Welsh souvenir place so I got a few cool things. One thing I've learned is how honest the Welsh people are, a worker at the store told me what I was buying was £29, then I gave her £40 and apparently she only gave me £1, but I didn't realise it, I was still in the store, and 5 minutes later she ran up to me and was so sorry for not giving me my £11 change back, and I didn't even realise it. Wow, I love the honesty here.

Tuesday was a decent day, honestly not my best day. We taught Gxxx on her doorstep for an hour, I was freezing, the wind and mist is a bad mix haha. After that we met up with Axxx, and played pool with him, that was a blast. It reminded me of all the times me and the crew would gather at Issac Berretts house for pool. I won two out of three games 😉 we had ward coordination and then got subway with the ward mission leader, and then I got the best news of the day: I'm staying in Swansea, I was SO relieved, and now I'm hyped! 

Wednesday we saw Kxxx and Gxxx, both good lessons. I started out exchanges with Elder Smith, but then ended up with elder miner. We got some solid potentials and then had the best dinner and experience of my mission so far, best non spiritual experience that is, we went to...FIVE GUYS. America. We walked in, and the guy at the cash register said to us "by the looks of it, it seems like you're from America and that you've been to five guys before, welcome home". Those words brought so much happiness. I was hyped. Was it expensive? Yes, I spent £15 on one meal. That's way expensive. Was it worth it? Absolutely, it was such a cool experience. I felt like I was back in the States, it had the same feel, and more importantly, the same taste. I was so thrilled. And while I know I won't taste of five guys soon, I will be back again.

Thursday we had our district meeting, which was fun. The Sister missionaries knew I've been dying for some American pancakes, so for lunch, sister wadsworth made some American pancakes for the district, it was so amazing. American food is where it's at guys. Only mistake though: there was some extra pancake batter so I decided to make an extra one, and I put way too much oil in the pan, so I pretty much deep fried a pancake, that was interesting. After that we went over to Kxxx's place to paint for a while. And after that, we went to Royston's house for dinner! He fed us this amazing kish thing and salad and for dessert, apple crumble and rice pudding, it was SOOOO good, this guy is so cool.

Friday was a pretty good day. We met up with Dxxx, also pictured below, and then went back for weekly planning and lunch. Not much else for most of the day, I got two naps in during lunch and dinner so that was cool I guess. We played volleyball at night which was fun too.

Saturday was one of the best days of my entire mission. We had lunch with Shaun at his place, followed by him showing us some studio c skits and jamesthemormon, that was a good time. Then...Kxxx's baptism!! Everything went super well!!! Except one thing...the water in the baptismal font was BOILING hot, oh my gosh it was crazy, but it was such a cool experience. She was so prepared for that moment, and she already wants to go out teaching with us which is way rad!! I got to baptise her and elder Mthethwa did the confirmation! After the baptism, we had a ward Halloween party called trunk or treat! That was way rad also! It was such a good day.

Sunday was rad too. We went to church which was pretty sweet, then we went back to the flat so elder Mthethwa could pack, and I watched the face to face studio c thing, which was sweet, check it!

As always, I'll end this with a spiritual thought, by far the most important part of my letter in my opinion: one of my favourite hymns that I've been reflecting on has the lyrics, "When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings; name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord has done. Count your blessings; Name them one by one. Count your blessings; See what God hath done. …Are you ever burdened with a load of care? Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear? Count your many blessings; ev’ry doubt will fly, And you will be singing as the days go by." I want to challenge each of you to reflect on the blessings the Lord bestows upon you throughout the day at the end and throughout each day. No matter how hard of a time you are having, I promise you the strength to get through anything as you do this, I leave you with this blessing as you faithfully thank God for his hand in your life. As you do this, your hearts will overflow with gratitude. 

I miss you all, I pray for you all, and I love you all. Make sure you all have a legen-wait for it-DARY week, LEGENDARY!

Elder Varner

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