After I sent my email last week, our quadpanionship engaged in one of our favorite P-day activities: free-scent-sampling at the local Bath and Body Works. Elders Penney and Farr from an adjacent area joined us, so we six elders in white shirts and ties flooded the fragrance shop, carefully labeling and collecting whichever new scents struck our fancy on the cards provided by the store.
This 9-inch-diameter monstrosity was the size of a birthday cake. We cut it into quarters, which we plowed through with determination. We then slowly devoured the accompanying mountain of fries. Unwilling to give up even at that point, we also each ordered–and finished–large shakes.
On Thursday, the entire southern half of our mission went to Zion’s Camp, a local Church-owned recreational property, together! We four drove all the way up to Belfair in a thick fog. The dark silhouettes of tall pines on each side of the road drifted past.
At Zion’s Camp, we all assembled in the main room and divided into groups to do a ropes course. We went about taking part in activities such as a cable walk, spiderweb, wooden wall surmount, and Moses stump game (don’t ask). After each activity, there followed a hackneyed discussion on how it applied to leadership and missionary work. It was very enjoyable, though.
We finally returned to the main room, where we had a big surprise: an early screening of the film Meet the Mormons! We 100 missionaries all sat and watched the 80-minute film while eating popcorn. It was an excellent day.
The rest of the week has been great as well. My comps are all great guys. This is Elder Teuscher’s last few weeks (he returns home on the 15th), Elder Simmons’ 15th month, and Elder Walkenhorst’s 4th month. In addition to our usual knocking on doors, we’ve also been doing a fair amount of street contacting on the Evergreen campus. The students generally won’t make commitments of any kind, but they’ll often be willing to listen to and talk with us.
We have some great investigators as well, including M, who we’ve been trying to help with the Word of Wisdom. He has a problem with vodka ("vodker"), and often makes up "Norwegian" words when intoxicated. He’s a great guy, not least because he gives us ice cream whenever we come over to teach him. He’s been off of the vodker for four weeks now.
The food situation is quite livable. I just eat Colossal Berry Crunch for breakfast and a PB&J sandwich for lunch. We eat dinner with a member almost every day, so that’s where the bulk of our day’s nutritious value comes from.
Also, sorry for the lack of pictures. I turned my camera’s quality back up, hoping to be able to run a compression .exe on this computer, but the library computers won’t allow it. More pictures will come next week.
So far, the only news on the visas is that the paperwork has gone through the San Francisco consulate and is now being processed in Taipei. President Day says that they "are making major strides in getting [the missionaries] here." Let’s hope that all works out. If not, in the words of Elder Teuscher: "Nothing can fix a problem like expired baking soda."