Tuesday, March 28, 2017

I Can Hear!

Plzen elders… Elder Pickett, Elder Brockbank, Elder Raines, Elder Anderson

Hello everyone, this week flew by really fast, it is hard to remember what exactly happened, but I will give it a go. Our day today has been madness.

  • Okay weather this week. It's been overcast pretty hardcore, but today is beautiful. We are just wearing long sleeve white shirts, and it is good times.
  • On Tuesday we went to MLC in Prague. We also went to the doctor where I got the ear wax suctioned out of my ear by a very interesting machine. It was pretty crazy, and my hearing in my left ear was fabulous for the rest of the day, because it had been trying to compensate and hear better, so once it was unblocked everything was a whole lot louder. But I am all normal now, and grateful for modern technology and two hearing ears.
  • Also on Tuesday we had an exchange with Elders Swink, Gaulin, and Mueller in a trio in Prague. I went with Elder Swink and we saw a lot of miracles and met a lot of really cool people Tuesday evening, and then went home with the others. The next morning we got ready and kept going on the exchange, which ended at around 5 that evening. It was a great exchange and we got some good interaction with the missionaries. They are awesome.
  • Contacting in Plzen is also going well. We are meeting cool people and working on setting up with them. This week we should have some more time after Wednesday for contacting and that will be good.
  • Elder Anderson is awesome! He actually reminds me a lot of Carson Farnworth, so we are having a “heckle” of a good time!  (Caroline’s "hip" word she is sharing with Brad)

  • Thursday we had District Meeting and met a few cool people contacting, and Friday we were the lone missionaries in Pilsen, because the other 4 went to Progression Training for new missionaries in Brno. The greenies are doing awesome, they are making some serious progress in Czech and slowly starting to understand a little bit (I remember those times quite well). Luckily we handled Game Night by ourselves and everything went okay without them here. Because of travel problems they got in really late, and we ended up driving the Sisters home at 10 PM with our mission President's approval, don't worry.
The rest of the Plzen district off to Brno for Progression Training
  • Saturday we went and did service, gathering up branches from a pine tree that had been cut down in a family's yard. That was quite a task, but some fun physical labor. We also met up with the Terry family for lunch. And we had sports night, the last one inside, because the weather is getting nicer and nicer.
Plzen elders with the Terry family & Elder Terry (who just completed his mission)

 McDonald’s with the Terrys

  • The Terry family brought me a nice package from my family, fully decorated! The full effect! It was great fun! I am quite excited about the Eastertivities, they are super fun! And also about the needed hygiene and eye care. And of course, the candy and cake are fabulous. Sister Andersen's birthday is the 8th of May, so we will probably have a joint cake/celebration. I am looking forward to it. And the bookmarks are great, I will be giving those out for sure as well.

  • Restaurant prices depend on if you buy lunch or dinner, because they have a "daily menu" option for lunch. But for lunch today I got Indian food with a big drink, and I paid between $4-5. And it was really good, and plenty filling. I would say most prices on the daily menu of an entree range from $4-6. Off the daily menu they range from $6-10.

Here’s our Plzen District going to eat at the brewery restaurant called Pivovar  
last week- bread bowl goulash

  • Overall it was a kind of slow/interesting week, but this week should be really good. We have training tomorrow, and an exchange right after, which we are looking forward to. We just finished making a presentation for our 15 minute spiritual thought tomorrow on testimony for training. It should be pretty good, we are excited. I have been studying and praying and trying to discern where the proper balance is in being bold without overbearing as a missionary. Those are some great insights from the most recent Face- to Face event so thank you very much Dad.
  • I have learned lots of cooking principles on my mission, not necessarily specific dishes . We do spaghetti a lot, rice with veggies and chicken. I have learned how to make fried rice, which is something new. Basically every day I eat cereal, because they have some really tasty cereal here. And eggs sometimes, mostly if my companion is making them and offers to throw on a couple for me.
My spiritual thought for this week is about humility. One of the things I have noticed is that it takes humility to admit when we do something wrong. We are tempted immediately to justify our actions or to excuse them. When we do this we only limit ourselves in our personal growth. Humility means having the courage to say "I was in the wrong, and I admit it. I will do better next time." This seems like such a simple thing, but our pride gets in the way so often. However, I have found in my life that the courage to admit to our wrongdoings leads to the power to change and be better. It allows the Savior and the power of His Atonement into our lives to change us for the better. So I challenge you all to be courageous, and to be humble. Thanks for the support and prayers!

-Elder Pickett 

Hello Mommy-o! I already wrote you a birthday note! I was thinking about typing it up to send it all to you today, but I think I might send it by snail mail, because hand-written letters are just more significant. Hopefully we will somehow find time to mail it off today. I will also do a birthday recording,  that is another excellent idea.

The DeLanges (longtime family friends) were in Prague? That's super fun! President P is awesome, I am sure they loved him. As long as they understood his Czech humor. And we will be there tomorrow for training, so I will pick it up.

From Rebecca Terry/ Elder Terry’s Mom:  I finally met your son. And I have pictures. I told the elders  that I was given the task of taking many pictures of them. I felt like the paparazzi! It was kind of funny.
Here's a fun fact. When you use the toilet on trains here, your waste goes onto the tracks! So we've been saying that we are going to water the tracks when we pee. I'm pretty sure we don't allow waste dumping on our train lines.
One other thing we noticed right away. Most people here smoke. Yuck! And we don't see very many overweight people here either. It's certainly not the food, it must be all the walking they do. Driving around here would scare me to death! No thanks! You take your life into your hands by crossing streets.
Also, wash cloths are hard to find. And their toilet paper is very rough, and the vast majority of public toilets aren't free. We pay anywhere from 7- 20 crowns each time. They are free at restaurants, but that's pretty much it.

Elder Brockbank and Elder Raines- studying Czech

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