Bonjour Ma Famille,
Well, it is the end of my first transfer....and I'm writing this letter from Carcassonne (yes, just like the game!) Anyways, I'll tell you the backstory and then explain more. We got transfer calls on Friday. I was pretty positive that I would stay in Lyon, it is a huge sector and no one leaves in less than 2-3 transfers, especially a new missionary. Because of this preconceived notion, I was freaked that they would take away both of my trainers (which they did) and leave me alone in the city with someone new. So, I memorized the whole metro and all of the trams, trains, and buses. I reorganized the whole appartment and finally emptied the rest of my suitcases just last week. Needless to say, I was absolutely shocked to get the call from President. But, I am very excited about this new assignment.
Carcassonne is absolutely nothing like Lyon. It is down south and our area covers all the way down to the coast. Yes, I am being sent to the hot, humid south without air-conditioning for the summer months. Prepare to receive tons of pictures with an extremely cherry-red face. But, I'm pretty sure that it is one of the most awesome places in the mission (no bias). There are over 163 castles just in our sector, including the biggest one in the mission (which I can conveniently see through my bedroom window). Lyon was a huge, international city. It was full of college students, we had a large ward, everything was public transportation, etc. Carcassonne is very cute, old, small, and is very much a tourist town. It's basically just like Old Lyon but that's what the entire city looks like. They just barely opened this area to sisters last transfer so we're basically starting over. The ward is small and struggling. Guess who is the new ward pianist? Yeah, that's right, it's a good thing I practiced in the MTC. Apparently the ward also has a problem with the mission sending sister missionaries to the ward. They were super offended because their ward wasn't "worthy enough to have missionaries that held the priesthood". Haha, they got a very strongly worded letter for Elder Anderson of the Twelve about two weeks ago...hopefully that helps. We're definitely starting from the ground up. I'm super stoked, we're going to see miracles. Oh, my new companion's name is Sister Fairchild. She's from Idaho and seems great. I just barely arrived a few hours ago, so I will definitely give you more updates next week.
Last week in Lyon was great. Unfortunately, the Campaners moved their baptism date to this next month, so I won't be able to see the baptisms. Oh, well. I'm happy for them. Funny story of the week... So we were teaching a lesson to one of our amis. We were teaching the word of wisdom. When we told her that we don't use tabacco, she gave us the strangest look and then asked, "Wait, so I can't have ketchup anymore?" We quickly corrected her and let her know that eating tomatos is definitely not against the word of wisdom. Apparently I need to work on pronouncing things correctly. Another story to prove that... Yesterday I bore my testimony in church because it was my last Sunday. My French was pretty good and the grammar was fine, but again, I have a very strong American accent. I had several ward members thinking that I was being transferred to Pakistan instead of Carcassonne afterwards. Don't know how they got that interpretation, but I'm definitely glad that that is not the case.
I have absolutely loved my time in Lyon. Though it has been short, I have learned so much. I have loved the missionaries that I have been able to work with too. It has been a great time and I can't wait to start this new adventure. I hope that you all had a wonderful week and a great Easter! I love you all!
Soeur Alisa Hulme