Hey everyone! It’s been a bit – things worked out funny with flights and changing which day I can talk, but I made it!! Right now I’m in Žilina, which is like an hour or so away from Trenčín, where mom is from. I have two companions, elders Frost and Noftle, both of which have played cello and violin for 11 and 15 years respectively. Our apartment is pretty cramped since we have 3 violins and 2 guitars just sort of hanging out. Expect some good musical posts on Facebook – we’re going to take advantage of it while we can before Frost goes home in January.
The other night we were practicing at the church building, right on the main square, and we heard some love music out there so we went and watched that. It was a little surreal especially because I was just standing there, holding a miniature Christmas tree, listening to “Despacito” on two violins and a cello in Slovakia. Definitely a cool moment. Also there were two super drunk guys that were doing their best to dance which was pretty entertaining.
Besides that, we’ve been at a bunch of conferences recently which means I’ve met everyone currently serving here, including a lot of Ukrainians which is cool. Thanksgiving dinner was Vietnamese with everyone who had to stay for social media training since we’re trying to be the best mission in Europe social media wise. In areas as big as here, it can be difficult to find people who live far away so we run ads and then contact anyone who was interested. It’s been great to meet everyone though – finally I am around more than 1 missionary who actually speaks slovak.
Church here this past Sunday was very different. I was expecting it, but still different. It was the three of us, the two senior missionaries here (which is the term for married couples who choose to serve as well) and then one American man and his little daughter. We did all the talks and stuff in Slovak, but then afterwards switched to English for the rest of church which was strange. I will say usually we have more like 5 other people but they were sick this week. It was nice though, we played a hymn arrangement and got to sing in Slovak and everything.
Today was my first pday here! It’s been good – we went on a hike up to Súľov castle (just ruins) and practiced a bunch of chamber music for fun (it turns out I can’t read nearly as well as I thought-sheet music is a new skill for me but we are working on it).
I guess I’ll also talk about the flight here – we flew straight to Amsterdam from Salt Lake, but then had a 6 hour layover there. But we got to travel with one of the sisters that got her Czech visa, which was nice. Unfortunately we had to leave one of our companions at the MTC as he did not get his visa yet, but hopefully he will get here soon as well.
After we made it to Prauge, we actually ended up staying there for two days because of all those conferences, so we hung out with the missionaries there for a while and saw the sights and talked to some Czech people on trams (native Czech is very difficult for me as of right now, but it is likely that I will serve there later). Then we also spent two days in Brno, where some of us went and hunted for traditional ribbons at fabric stores so we could make cool ties. Brno was really pretty and had some cool streets and stuff. That was cool and also way bigger than Žilina, but it’s nice to be here. Also I managed to accidentally make black tea by not checking the box before – I don’t know why we have six in the apartment but it tastes like dirt anyways so I’m not missing out on anything.
That’s about it for these last two weeks – just getting into it as an actual missionary. I’m excited to see more of Žilina and settle in and everything. Hopefully all is well back home and you’re all doing okay.
Love you all and miss you,
First miata I’ve seen here from Prauge
The view from Súľov
Elder Noftle and a weird statue in Brno
The trio at Súľov
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