Monday, March 27, 2017

Chang Out the Lam Fam. Week 84 from Hong Kong

Hello all,

   This was an interesting week. A lot of things changed but there were very few adventures. So this week might be a bit dry. 

   So first off the biggest change is that Elder Taylor and I went to the mission office early on Thursday morning and changed companions. He went to Macau, so I can't call him and see how he is doing or tell him any of the cool things that are happening to the investigators here in Tai Po. So he did that and I picked up Elder Winwood. He was in the MTC with me. So that was a hard transition going from a brand new missionary to an old one. We are still adjusting but I think we will have good times. 

   Yesterday was the last Sunday of the month so that means that Elder Ashton and I spent a good amount of time together talking about zone plans and goals and closing out the month and opening the new one. The zone is struggling numbers wise, so we are running around trying to figure out why and see what we can do to fix it. This batch of move calls really scrambled the zone. The Zone has a completely different feel to it. Lots of adjusting after move calls. 

   I almost forgot last p-day before moves we went to Kwai Fong to get some gummy candy for the upcoming general conference. Since we were there we decided to check out this place that sold the backpacks that one of the guys in the zone had. Long story short I ended up buying one. It was super nice. And I figured that I was going to college soon and would need a new backpack haha. So it is tucked away in my suitcase for when I get home. 

   Last night Elder Ashton (I forgot he is the new zone leader and so my new "step companion") and I had the meeting with the stake president. That was a good meeting. He reminded me of myself in that meeting for the first time. I have been here for a long time and so I have a really good idea of what is happening in the stake. Elder Ashton does not. I tried to fill him in but he is new to the area so it was still a little shooting in the dark. The fun thing though is that after the meeting the mission president (President Lam) takes us out to dinner. However this being Sunday we could not do that. So we did a little planning ahead and decided to have President and sister Lam over for dinner. So while we were in the meeting our companions were cooking. We decided to have English chips and fried chicken. That was a lot of fun. They were very impressed that our house was as clean as it was! We cleaned it pretty good before we came over which was good because the houses just get destroyed when moves happen. That was really good fun having them over for dinner. We might do it again next month!

That is all for this week.

Elder Walker

The new apartment Elders with President and Sister Lam

Last picture of the old apartment Elders before moves (I am wearing my old backpack because we are going out the door to the mission office and I have learned that a backpack on moves day comes in quite handy.)   

The ward Gordon is serving in has a Facebook page.  I found this picture there.  Gordon and his new companion Elder Winwood.

The new backpack I got is a sponsor of Formula E which has its Hong Kong grand prix in central in October. That is not why I got it but it was a cool bonus. 

Monday, March 20, 2017

Move Calls. Week 83 from Hong Kong

Hello all,

   Man I am exhausted. I did not get to sleep till 1 am last night. We got move calls last night. I will be staying in Tai Po, Elder Taylor will be going to Macau (He is very excited about this). My new companion is Elder Winwood. We were in the MTC together. I will be very interested to see how this works out. I will be staying Zone Leader and the other zone leader will be moving so I will get a new "step companion". A lot of things changed in the zone so we will be interested to see how this all plays out.

   That was the most major thing to happen this week. We did have a lovely chang out  (We believe a "Chang out" is when a member takes them out for a meal"  with a member family. They are super cool we had a lovely time and committed them to help us fellowship a part member family. 

   Then last night we had a ward FHE because a missionary that used to serve here came back with her family. That was fun. I was standing up near the front at about the time they wanted to start so they just looked at me and suddenly I was conducting. Elder Taylor and I shared a message about Easter and the Atonement. He was speaking English and I would translate and then I would speak Cantonese and elder Taylor would translate to English. We looked to their family to share something that we could then translate to the rest of the ward. They went super deep, talking about family members who have died. Death by the way is a very sensitive thing in the Chinese culture. So the spirit was very strong. Super good message. Then we ate food. Her younger brother was 17 and apparently a very picky eater. So the ward gave him a hard time for that haha. You can't be picky in Hong Kong.

   Last p-day we went to this place called Monkey Mountain. There were many many monkeys. That was great fun. I will attach some pictures of them. All in all it was a good week. I shall be very interested to see what next week is like.

Elder Walker

Two Videos are at the end!





another water based issue in the Tai Po house

the Tse family

me and the bishop in Tai Wo ward

us Lisa and Andrew

Video of more bathroom problems

Video of Monkey Mountain

Monday, March 13, 2017

2 days 2 servings of chicken feet. Week 82 from Hong Kong

Hello all,

   Well this was an interesting week. I got to go on two exchanges as well. The first one was with Elder Harding. He is great. I love going on exchanges with him and he is a great district leader. The exchange was darkened slightly by the fact that we got a text from his area that said their ward mission leader's mom had passed away. That was sad. Especially because  they are really, really close friends with their ward mission leader. We were however able to have a great discussion about the plan of salvation, which teaches us how families can be together forever. That was nice.

  Then Elder Taylor and I were back together for about 12 hours and we got a call from the assistants and I was invited on an exchange with elder Sargent, who is one of the Assistants to the President. This meant that I was able to check living in the temple apartment off my mission bucket list. That apartment is HUGE! It is at least 4 or 5 times bigger that the one I live in now, It is also Air conditioned constantly. 

   The fun part of this exchange though was the lessons. The first was with a really, really rich woman. Who after the lesson took us out to dim sum. It was a supper fancy restaurant in Festival Walk. She asked if there was anything we didn't want to eat. We said that everything was fine. So one of the dishes she bought was Chicken feet! They were not bad to be honest, They were just really hard to eat, because when I bit it, it would like grab my chin and the toenails were trimmed, however they were not trimmed well. So I would also feel chicken toenail on my cheeks and that was not a good feeling. It tasted fine though. Just not enough meat for the work. That evening we went and taught an investigator family. They were super nice. They had 2 little boys one 10 and one 8. They were super cute. It was a really good lesson. When we were done we were walking away and they came running after us and handed us two huge bags of food! That was nice haha.

   That was a really good exchange. It also made me loose any desire I had to be an Assistant to the President. Way, Way too much paper work. 

   Then this week we had a stake Youth activity. That was a lot of fun. It was for the youth to see what mission life is like. Haha. That was a good time. Part of the activity was taking the youth out finding with us. Which pretty much was just finding by yourself. They were surprised how nervous they were. haha. It reminded me of my first few days in the field.

  Then this last Sunday we went to the mental hospital. That was a good experience. So we found the hospital and then we found the front door. We went in and found that there was some kind of activity going on. So we asked one of the volunteers who directed us to a doctor. We asked him if we could visit our friend. He said that we were not there during visiting hours. We knew we were there at the right time so I looked him dead in the face and said "Do not lie to the servants of God" Then he got all sheepish and said that we had to leave so we decided to not do that. We finally found the desk and asked to see our friend and we were led straight there. We had a great visit and read the Book of Mormon with her. She often goes to our English class. One of the funniest things she said was "there are only three normal people in here. Everyone else has mental illness." haha that was funny. She was also convinced that we were kings in a previous life and therefore had to suffer and be missionaries in this life. That was amusing. 

  Well those were adventures from this week.

Elder Walker

This was our apartment when I was on exchange with Elder Harding.

This is Elder Darrington trying to focus on the movie he was watching in Chinese for language study.

The video is a place we buy groceries from. haha. Don't get that in America. I don't think you can see it but the butchers are smoking. ​

Monday, March 6, 2017

Dog Attack. Week 81 from Hong Kong

Hello all,

   Well this was an interesting week. Many things happened. Some were good and some were not so good.

   This week I was able to go to MLC (Mission Leadership Council). That was interesting. It was a 4 hour meeting that was mostly the different zone leaders and Sister Training leaders sharing ideas and struggles that they are having in their zones. This was great and all. Normally the point of this is to get things and inspiration that we then take back to our zones in the form of a zone training. However we got to the second half of the meeting and President Lam stood up and announced that Zone training and Zone conference would be combined and that he wanted us to help him plain it. That went terribly wrong. We ended up really stressed and not knowing what is going to be happening at this meeting. So the stress level was high. In the end we knew that we were going to be giving a training for at least an hour. We will see what happens. That happens next week so we shall see. We are still in the panning stages and are preparing to have our plans dashed by some unforeseen information that will probably be coming our way. In the meantime though we are working with a member to get us a tank of Helium from mainland. apparently it is much much cheaper there. Again, wee shall see.

   I am pleased to report that this last Sunday I was able to go to Lori's baptism! That was fun. In the service she shared a cool story about how she came into contact with the church while living in main land. That was cool. 

   We also had an amazing kids English class this week. Normally we have like 2 kids maybe. This week we had 19. I ended up being the model for the "what kind of clothes do we need to go to America?" game. Those pictures will be attached.

   So to address the title. We were up in the hills looking for this less active man's house. We have been there before but not for a long time and I thought we should go and pay him a visit. Now there is this house that you have to walk by and there is no way around it. In the yard of this house lives a dog. This dog has no teeth, nevertheless it is very vicious. Most of the yard has a fence around it and it is normally too dumb to go around the other side. However this time we were going and we walked past like we normally do. but this time my companion all of a sudden looked be hind us and said "dog". I quickly turned aground to see this dog running up the stairs towards us. I knew there was no way we could run from it. So I let out all the stress and frustration from the last few weeks on this dog, and just pointed and yelled "NO!" several times and we started yelling at it to go home and leave. All in Chinese. It stopped right in its tracks and turned and walked home. So that was a good experience to tuck away for a later time. 

   That is all from this week. 

Elder Walker
My modeling pictures. If anyone wants to hire me just let me know haha.

This is a terrible picture of all of the Zone leaders from our group that were at MLC

This is a really awkward picture of an awkward picture we have from the MTC when we first met each other.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Fong Fei Kei. Week 80 from Hong Kong.

"Fong Fei Kei" in Cantonese is to break a promise, a deal or did not show up for an appointment

Hello all,

   This week sure has been an interesting one. We had about 15 lessons scheduled and confirmed. Then one by one they either all called and canceled re scheduled or did not show up at all, so we ended up at about 7 lessons this week. That was hard. 

   So a few weeks ago the bishop asked us to sing in sacrament meeting. So yesterday was the day and we decided to sing a hymn that they probably did not know because it is not translated into Chinese. I as a joke suggested "If you could hie to Kolob" haha so long story short we sang that in sacrament meeting and the ward members loved it. They were looking for it in the Chinese hymnal to find it but they couldn't haha. 

   Our church building is right next to a Catholic church and on Sunday two guys walked in and asked what time mass started. We told them that the Catholic church was next door but that they were welcome to stay. So they stayed for priesthood class. They were really cool and asked a lot of questions. We will see if anything happens with them. 

   Last p-day we went and played football (Soccer) with some of the Elders from Elder Ian Taylor's group. That was a lot of fun. It was a very hot day and we ended up quite sunburned, and very very sore. I had almost forgotten how bad I am at football (Soccer). 

   I was also able to do an exchange with Elder Stone. He is one of the district leaders in my zone. He is supper cool and a really good missionary. We were able to end the exchange with me doing a baptismal interview for one of his investigators. It was right after church so I did it in one of the bishops offices. The person's name is Lorri. She was awesome and super prepared for her interview. So she will be getting baptized next Sunday.

   We also had the end of the month which means that Elder Darrington and I spent from 7:30 to 9:30 crunching numbers and chasing people for their numbers. It was much smoother this time so that was really nice. 

   All in all this was a rough but rewarding week. 

Elder Walker

This is Iris, who meets with us. She turned 16 this week so we made a pineapple cobbler to give to her and her parents along with some stuff about our church to try and get her parents to like us. It did not work. :(  oh well it was fun anyway.

this is Lorri and the Ma On Shan Elders and me and Elder Taylor

The people we played football with (Soccer) or as elder Taylor sometimes says "footie" 

The red faces afterward

See attached video. It is low volume so turn it up. ​

Elder Taylor's Pants Troubles