Tuesday, December 10, 2013

New Companion This Week

Hello Everyone!!
Mes Bridge (Albanian: Ura e Mesit "bridge in the middle")[1] is a bridge in the village of Mes,[2] about five kilometres (straight line) northeast of Shkodër, in northwestern Albania. It was built in the 18th century, around 1780, by Kara Mahmud Bushati, the local Ottoman pasha,[1] and it spans the Kir River.[3] It is 108 m long, and represent one of the longest Ottoman bridges in the region.[4] It was built as part of the road that goes up the Kir Valley, eventually to Pristina.[3](from Wikipedia)
Jed said the bridge is 2000 years old, but it seems that it's actually about 250 years old, but still impressive!

This week was the craziest week of my entire life.  I have a new companion.  It's Elder B.  Pres. Ford called last week and proceeded to tell me that I was going up to Shkoder with the Assistants and we would be picking up Elder B. who was in the same MTC group as me and then he would be coming down into Tirana with me and we would continue workin here. 

Shkoder, Albania.  Beautiful little city. Sightseeing before everyone wakes up.

Saying goodbye to Elder M!!  He will be missed.
So we left at 3:30am and got into the big blue van that they use to transport the missionaries. We drove all the way up to Shkoder which was about an hour and a half. I wanted to sleep but I just got talking to the AP's the whole freaking time so unfortunately I didn't get any sleep. We pulled into Shkoder at about 5:30 that morning and since the elders there weren't awake, we decided to not go wake them up. We got a loaf of bread and then just took off to go see a really cool old bridge that's been there for like 2000 years. It's huge and way cool, I've got a few pics. So we looked at that for awhile and after we kinda looked around the town of Shkoder for a while. It's a really pretty place and I would love to serve there now that I think about it. 

So 6:30 rolled around and we went to the Elders house in Shkoder. They were in a triship meaning there were three missionaries serving together.  One of them is an Albanian missionary waiting for his visa to go to Australia. We had a good breakfast with them. Lots of eggs.

Breakfast with the Shkoder missionaries.  Lots of eggs:)

This is Elder Brown and he wanted a feature on the blog:)
So we took Elder B with us after breakfast which was a little bit sad for him, I know exactly how it feels to be taken from your birthplace, (They call the city they started their mission as their birthplace:) but we were both glad to be serving together. On the ride home we got about an hour of sleep and then the AP's dropped us off at our home. We took Elder B's stuff up into the house and unpacked all of his stuff and then I just explained how I was going to die if I didn't take a nap. I had been up since about 3 in the morning and now it was time for me to catch up on some sleep.  I slept from 12 to 2 and then we had a lesson with Evi!

So now to the work subject. Evi and the family we've been teaching are all doing fantastic! They're still planning on being baptized, so that's awesome as well. We have to go talk with Evi's mom or dad this week and have their permission to have him be baptized. I hope that all goes well. He's reading and praying every day and he's a great kid. He has those moments where he acts like the teenage boy he is, but for the most part he's fantastic. 

Elder Clawson and Elder B with a favorite investigator.
We also have a new investigator from our English Course named Eli. She's about 55 years old and has a son that lives in Canada. She really wants to learn English so she can go and visit him. She showed a little bit of interest in the church when we would give our spiritual thoughts and she really knows a lot about God. We had our first lesson with her last Saturday and then we met with her everyday since. She reads and loves coming to church. We had two baptisms for some of the other missionaries this last Saturday, and she came to one of them and said it was absolutely beautiful. Elder B and I invited her to be baptized and she said she'd try her best to be ready. So I call that a yes if she stays as golden as she has. 
Elder Clawson and Elder B on Pday.

Missionary life.
Elder B and I are really struggling with the language but we can already see the improvement that we've gotten in the last week. We are getting work done. He's a really hard worker and knows his purpose for being here on a mission. It's always fun to talk about our adventures from our past life. We get along super well and he likes Tirana already. It's pretty big and the people are kinda weird sometimes but he's accepting the fact that it's just where he is. 

We are the first of our group to co senior which means two from the same group are comps in the field. We are also the youngest to co senior seeing as no one coseniors their first transfer into the mission. 

Jed's Christmas tree courtesy of Elder Matson's family.  Thanks Matson's!!

I love this pic!!!  The entire Adriatic South Mission.  It is small compared to other missions, but big in heart!  Jed is right in the middle by the sister with the yellow scarf:)
We're are being safe and having fun doing the work. It's starting to get really cold which is awesome but Kirsten told me that it's ridiculously cold at home. I'm glad to hear that you all had a fun and eventful week. 

Tell Eric and Devan that I'm excited for them. (Some of Jed's friends leaving next week for their missions!) I miss seeing their ugly faces.  Well anyways. I can't wait to hear about the skiing adventures that you guys have. It'll be fun to talk to you all on Christmas too!! Have a good week and I love you all!

Love, Jed

Dear Mother, 
I haven't gotten the packages yet but I did get Erin's today. So maybe at the end of this week I'll get them. The mail here just sucks. I'm excited to eat those pretzels!! Thanks for all of your prayers. I can definitely feel the influence they have on me.  I love you so much. 

Love, The Eldest

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