Crazy, crazy week. I ended up only being in Besancon for about three days of it. We had two exchanges in Lyon, so basically I lived there. Cool part-- one of the exchanges was with Soeur Luthi's companionship. Loved it! One, two of my bleues worked together for a day. Cool, right? Two, I got to work with my "granddaughter", Soeur Bragg (meaning that Soeur Luthi...my bleue: AKA daughter...is her trainer). Confusing family ties. But, to put it simply, I had a fun week with most of my mission posterity. Basically, they're all clones of me. Aren't they lucky? (not prideful...just a joke)
Random moment from one of the exchanges... So I was working in my first ward of the mission and we got to do service at the bishop's house. It was cool that I could officially meet him as a somewhat more capable French speaker. The project: Scrubbing and chipping paint off of the walls and floors of their house. They recently moved in and the painter did probably the worst job I've ever seen in my life. I definitely could have done better at the age of eight. Anyway, we spent hours scrubbing all of the extra paint off of the doorframes and tile. Interesting experience...maybe next time they'll just ask the missionaries to paint the house from the start.
My beautiful ville of Besancon welcomed it's first snow this week. Oh my goodness, so incredible. Seriously, a winter wonderland with all of the trees twinkling with the freshly fallen snow. And, to add to that, they've turned on all of the Christmas lights in town...the giant tree, the city hall that is wrapped in a huge, red ribbon, and the snowflakes and wreaths hanging between the streets. Cutest thing that I've ever seen. Don't worry, Mom, I'll be sure to film myself walking down the cobblestone streets so you can see it all.
Today I had a weird realization. So, a little while ago I wrote home asking my mom to send me sheet music for the piano. #1: Who would have ever thought that I would be asking for piano music that I would have to carry with me the rest of my mission? I'm stoked whenever I finish a chapstick that won't add weight anymore to my luggage. #2: Um, pretty sure I never played the piano before my mission and considered it the bane of my existance for a good portion of my life. #3: I received the music this week and looked forward to nothing else this P-day than playing while Soeur Pagano wrote her emails to her family. So basically, it took my mission to get me to love the piano. Look what's happening to me.
So this week, there were also lots of miracles. One night we were out contacting and it was getting late. We only had a couple more minutes before going home and only needed one more person to make our daily goal for contacts. Okay, you see where this is going...typical missionary story, but it was cool anyway. We were walking through this neighborhood and literally couldn't find anyone so felt that we should start going back another way. And, of course, there was a girl. Sadly, she wasn't interested. Oh well, we got our contacting goal. But then, there was one more guy behind her and, of course, we passed him because we already had our contacting goal. Whatever, we totally talked to him and taught him a lesson right there on the street and prayed with him and testified and left him with a Book of Mormon. There you go, an end of the day miracle.
Also, we had the most incredible lessons with Migo (our wonderful Taiwanese amie). Love her! We talked to her about Christ, which was really cool because we had to start from square one and, did I mention that it's all in English? Luckily that wasn't a problem because we speak English. Except, it's kind of embarrassing when you get to the first vision and realize that you don't know it in your native language. Awkward. Anyways, the lesson was great and the Spirit was so strong. At the end she told us how she knows that God answers her prayers and that she feels peace and happiness when she reads the Book of Mormon and comes to church. Miracle! Guess who has a baptismal date now? What an awesome Christmas present for the Savior. She is seriously the most sincere and sweet person ever and we're so excited to be helping her prepare to follow Christ. Also, what an cool thing for our little branch. The last baptism they saw was over 1 1/2 years ago and now that person is completely inactive. I can't even track back to the baptism before that. I love miracles!
Everything is great and I'm loving my mission. There is no better way to spend my favorite time of the year!
On a sidenote, are you kidding me? Mom, you have literally been stuck in bed for 10 months because a tick from New York bit you and the dentist gave you too much numbing medicine during a root canal? That sounds like the start of a joke. Well, I'm definitely glad they finally figured it out. I'm praying for a miraculous recovery before your trip to France.
Have a wonderful week!
Je vous aime,
Soeur Alisa Hulme
(Votre missionnaire préférée)