Thursday, April 15, 2010

9 September

Hello everyone! The crazy news for today is that I hit my year mark next week. Which means that I only have 6 months left of my mission. Crazy. Yesterday all the sister missionaries had a meeting in Taipei and I looked around and realized I am one of the oldest (mission wise) sisters in the mission! And I think I am the oldest (age wise) American in the mission, which makes me feel really old. This morning I started having "post mission fears" about going back to BYU and being 23. That is just really really old!

Anyway, but enough about how old I am. This past week was really crazy--my companion and I feel like we have taken a biking tour of Taiwan and we are so tired! We really try to be effective but having such a big area means a lot of juggling and a lot of riding. Sometimes we have to be in two cities in one day and so we have to ride back and forth. The other day we had to go to Taoyuan in the morning and then to Bade at noon and then back to Taoyuan in the evening, and then back to Bade at night to go home. it was exhausting. And my companion said to me yesterday, "I feel like we just ride all over Taiwan but we don't do anything--no teaching, no contacting, just running all over!"

So I will tell a story to illustrate. Monday was district meeting, and the zone leaders were coming to teach it. The zone leaders actually live in Bade (our district meeting is in Taoyuan) and so we teach the women in their area too. So they called us the night before and asked us if we could come with them to a lesson at 5:30 Monday night in Bade, but we said there was no way because we had an appointment at 6:30 in Inge (about a 45 minute ride away). But then after district meeting my companion was teaching one of the zone leaders (young missionaries have to teach the zone leaders every transfer to improve their Chinese and teaching) and the other zone leader asked me several times if there was ANY way we could come with them to teach this investigator--she had come to attend a baptism on Saturday so we met her then, but she came drunk and I guess her husband just died two weeks ago and this zone leader really wanted us to go with them to teach her. Well, I finally gave in and said that it would kill our legs but we would go to teach her and then they would have us teach her after that.

Well, unfortunately we did not leave the Taoyuan chapel until 5:00 and the appointment was for 5:30. It usually takes us 45-50 minutes to ride to the Bade chapel and it is all uphill. So my companion and I took off riding at top speed (I call it death speed) to get to Bade. About halfway there my body just gave out and I started praying, just let me die. Nothing in life is worth the pain I am in right now and I just want to lay down in the rice fields and die. We were riding so fast and my body is seriously slowly falling apart. It has been a long year and some days I just don't think I can bike anymore!

Anyway, so we made it to the Bade chapel at about 5:35 and met the zone leaders there, who left the Taoyuan chapel at the same time as us. And one of them turned to me and said, "I can't believe you sisters made it here so fast! We just barely got here and we booked it all the way." And thankfully I didn't hit him or even respond but I thought it was an incredibly chauvenistic comment--does he really think that elders bike so much faster than sisters?

Anyway, so I was already irritated at him and I wanted to die, or at least pass out and cry because I was so tired, but we went with them to the investigator's house. And then she wasn't there, so they called her, and it turns out that she had gone to Southern Taiwan that afternoon! I was so upset I just wanted to cry. We had just killed ourselves for nothing...and we still had to go to Inge! Well, thankfully my companion is awesome and she helped me laugh about it--plus we still had a beautiful ride to Inge, which is out in a countryish area.

So then we ride to Inge and try to find the second counsellor's house, because we had a dinner appointment with him and his wife. Unfortunately, I have never been to Inge (pronounced een-guh) and my companion had never gone there from Bade before (only from Taoyuan). And so we got lost. And while we were trying to find their house, they kept calling our cell phone to see where we were, so I would stop and pull my phone out but inevitably it would bump against something in my bag and hang up on them. Every time! And we couldn't call them back because they only have a house phone, and we can't call house phones from our cell phone.

Finally we pulled over to use a pay phone and call them and tell them that we would be late--and then finally made it to their house, half an hour late. After riding all over Inge, Bade, and Taoyuan as fast (or faster) as our little legs could bike. So we ate with them and did an FHE with them, and then rode back home to Bade.

My companion and I keep joking that we want to buy a bike odometer so we can see how much we ride every day--I am pretty sure we topped 50 miles this week.

Anyway, so that is my exciting life as a missionary. I feel like my body is a lot like my bike--after several accidents and a very long year, my bike is starting to fall apart and just can't make it sometimes. Me too. But the work of the Lord will continue to move forth, and I only have six more months until I can go home and sleep for a month. :)

Love you all,

Sister White

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