This is Elder Bushman--one of our visa waiters. He's leaving for Brazil on Monday and was in the office today with his companion, Elder Morrow, who was packing his bike to send home. (He'll be released next Thursday.) Back to Elder B. He's from St. Louis and his mom called 2 days ago because she wanted to send the last package before he leaves US soil because nothing will ever get to him in Brazil. (I really should quit complaining about the US mail. At least it gets to us--usually.) Mom wasn't sure if it should go to his apartment or the office. The office is probably the better choice. So the package arrived while Elder B was here, and, of course, he opened it. Mom had sent some special St. Louis cake that was truly the best cake ever. Maybe that's because it has 3 packages of cream cheese in the batter! Dear Elder B was kind enough to share it with some of us. Well, I felt it was only right that I should let Mom know that the box arrived safely. So I emailed her and just happened to mention that her son is wonderful and I'd love the recipe if it wasn't a family secret. I haven't heard back from her but am keeping my fingers crossed. Elder B has been pretty quiet the other 2 times we've met which might be because he's so new. He arrived from the MTC last transfer. But he really opened up today, and it was fun to see his personality come out.
Elder Fontenot popped into the office today and brought this beautiful 12 lb smoked ham to Marc. He'd been to a friend's "place" to pick up 120 lbs of pork sausage to bar-b-q for the YW fundraiser--selling sausage po' boys. Elders F and L have been talking about this good friend of Elder F who has a "place" where he prepares meats. I thing that includes slaughtering and smoking, so if you're "this little piggy," y'all best stay home, have roast beef, have none, or you may be someone's dinner. It's really disconcerting to know that "this little piggy" was running around someone's yard very recently. I'm having a hard time reconciling the fact that he's not in a shrink-wrapped package from Costco! If we're going to live here till mid 2015 we'd better get with the program. If Elder F has his way, before we go home we'll be eating squirrel, frog and racoon, but not 'possum. Elder F doesn't like the taste of 'possum. Oh, thank goodness! I'm sure that one would've done me in! (I just re-read this paragraph. It's full of grammatical errors & should get a D+ for understandability, but it'll stand as written.)
I'd like to just say, again, that I LOVE THIS MISSION! There's nothing about it that gets me down. Even during our busiest times, it's the best. All the Elders and Sisters who come into the office seem to feel comfortable and at home. I'm sure that has a lot to do with Sister Olsen and her welcoming spirit. I'll be sorry for her to leave next week because we've developed a very pleasant friendship. When I think of her I'm reminded of "For Good" from the musical "Wicked." Glinda and Elphaba say good-bye and acknowledge that who they are is because they knew each other. Not all of the words apply, but I love a few lines.
(Glinda) I've heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason,
Bringing something we must learn and we are led
To those who help us most to grow if we let them,
And we help them in return. Well I don't know if I believe that's true,
But I know I'm who I am today because I knew you...
(Elphaba) It well may be that we will never meet again in this lifetime...
You'll be with me like a handprint on my heart...
I just want to say that the most important things I've learned from Sister Olsen aren't all office skills! And our paths will cross again!