Saturday, 5 March 2016

March 5 2016. Only one picture, that of mistletoe, not really a romantic Christmas plant, but a tree parasite that stays green when all else is brown. This tree was full of it. I thought just for fun I would outline what we did this week for those who wonder what the heck we do all day. So the week began on Monday when we went to Inese Bezede's for the start of some Romanian training here. she is a bright young lady who translates Mandarin to Romanian . She is a wonderful native speaker and can hopefully help me become more fluent. We will be seeing her twice a week on Monday and Wednesday mornings. Pretty motivated eh kids, taking up some P day? We then came home, prepared some lessons , did some study time and did some cooking. That night we went to Russian institute class for 30 minutes, dropped off some treats, and then went to the Bezedes to teach a temple prep class. Tuesday we prepared lessons, went for an hour walk [we try to do this daily] and then drove to Orhei, as mentioned. We taught there, then came home and went to the Advanced English class to try to help as a volunteer. This one was taught by Sister Armstrong and Nichols. We got home late from that, quite tired. Wednesday we had language class, got caught in a horrid traffic jam caused by double parkers, then went to sit at Immigration for more than 2 hours trying to finish off our visa. We got to visit with some Israeli Arab girls going to Dentistry here, nice kids. Interestingly, they thought visiting Israel was a dumb idea. At 4 pm they closed the office down, even though many of us were still waiting. then we went to the Church, and helped with English classes. First beginner +, taught by Elder Brown and Broberg, very well done, each class has at least 30 people. Then we helped with English medium, taught by Elder Nango and Swafford. A tougher class; they had to teach grammar we did not understand. On the way home , we were pulled over by the police, who told us [thru a translator on a phone]we had crossed a double line prior to a left turn and for 600 lei all would be forgotten. I was stubborn and said there was no line to see, but if they wanted to give us a ticket, we would go argue about it later at their office. In other words, we refused to bribe them. They told us to wait or to leave, the language was bad and they left us. After a while , we went home. We did not sleep well, but were told by a lawyer friend we did right. Thursday morning, we were back at immigration, finallized our visas and then prepared for Pathways/Institute. We taught our class and got home about 10 pm. This also involves a lot of food- did you know 4-5 bananas are normal per sitting? We got to Skype with Beth that night and Mette the next morning early. Friday  we had district missionary meeting, then Branch correlation meeting and went to lunch with the elders, 6 of them, who are way too used to eating in Restaurants. Too cheap and good here. We had Family home evening that night at the Church [we often help with the lesson and always the activity] We had made many cookies, but used Romanian vanilla extract. The cookies were not as good; hard to tell as the cookies were devoured so fast. Home about 9 pm. On Saturday I went to help with English class [we had an early morning walk exploring the area], helped set up a movie for non-members and provided popcorn, then went to a job placement workshop put on by Elder John Cooley, a self reliance missionary. All attending there were non members; it is a public service provided here by the Church. As soon as I was home, I had a language session with Christian Covey from Provo. Even though he resigned for school reasons, he agreed to teach me a couple more time. So we had a busy week. We also baked cookies for next week and are preparing for all we have then. Deb also prepared a lot of invitations and is preparing for a Relief society activity, Romanian and Russian Branches. It is not dull here, yes, we are busy enough. Happy to be home for now and also not in some Moldovan jail- I hear they are not nice. Maybe I won't be so stubborn, right after I watch pigs fly. By the way, a full week of being alive after driving here. These are arguably the worst drivers ever; anyone in a black German car drives crazy, passes or turns at will at any time any where. Speed limits are just a ridiculous suggestion. There is one roundabout that has become a spiritual part of our day, we say a prayer every time as we enter that we may leave it alive. Seriously. We also were almost rundown on the sidewalk this week by a car [driving on the sidewalk]. The bus was safer;we will occasionally use the bus when our nerves are just not good enough to drive.

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