Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Hills are Alive with the Sound of Austria!

Dear Family,

First off, if there is ANYONE that I didn't get a thank you card out to,
please know how much I loved and am grateful for your birthday wishes.
I had a wonderful day and many wonderful memories and reminders from those I love.
Thanks so much,

Sometimes I feel like I am living in a fairy tale :)
Me and "J"
I guess that's what happens when you are a daughter of God and you get called to the most beautiful place on Earth, you get to live a fairy tale for 18 months!  
(and then you return and meet your Prince Charming and live happily ever after to finish it all off- but I have plenty of time to think about that!) 

Wow, so much has happened in the last week.  
Its weird to think that at this time last week I was still in Freiburg, Germany. 
Saying goodbye was way hard.
Twin Missionaries- my last morning in Freiburg
It was my first time getting transferred away from an area
and I had been in Freiburg for so long!
Farewell Party
If I wasn't so dang excited to come to Austria, I don't think I would have left! 

Transfer day was crazy though.
All packed up and ready to GO...
I was traveling from one corner of the mission to nearly the opposite corner, 
so I think I probably spent about 8 hours in trains.  
I got to ride a German, a French, and then an Austrian train :)  I think I liked the french one the best though, even though I couldn't understand ANYTHING!  

So funny story, Sister Henry and I were supposed to travel with the Elders to Stuttgart,
and then Elder Stricklin and I were supposed to catch a train to Munich with a bunch of other missionaries.
But our train in Karlsruhe was late, so we missed our first train to Stuttgart. 
This meant that  Elder Stricklin and I had to catch a separate train to Munich...
just the two of us.
Elder Stricklin and I on the train
So for 2 and half hours, I was temporary companions with an Elder :p  It was way funny.
Linz is absolutely amazing, though.

On the train to Linz
The ward here is HUGE (for a European ward at least) and we are busy people here.  One of Sister Henry and my goals at the end of last transfer was to learn how to work better with the ward, how to more effectively use our time, and how to take better care of our investigators and actually help them to progress.  
Well, Linz is the answer to my prayers!  I know that I have a lot to learn here, but Sister Jaynes and Sister Wunderli set a great foundation for me to come in on.  
We have a lot of really great investigators, but I still need to meet all of them.  
Probably the biggest blessing for me is "M", a 24 year old investigator.  
She is a perfect example of a person who was ready to accept the gospel but had no idea what to look for.  She has overcome so much, faced so much adversity from her friends and peers, and has really had to work at changing her life, but she has made a complete 180.  The faith, strength, and courage that she has is admirable, and she is not even a member yet!  She is even  helping to host a YSA retreat here in Linz :P She's a great person, I think I"ll keep her!  

Teehee...Austrian I love it!  Imagine someone speaking German with a rough Minnesotan/Canadian accent...and you have an Austrian!  The only thing I don't like is their greetings here.  I loved saying 'Hallo, Guten Tag!'  but it sends shivers down my spine to hear 'Servus!' or 'Gruess Gott!' ugh.  Well, sometimes you have to take a little bad to get the really amazing!
Maybe I will warm up to hearing "servus", but Sister Henry made me promise not to pick up on it! (we both think that it is a hideous word.  Hallo is just so much more friendly...)

I have forgotten how much I love living in big cities!  Before my mission, it was always my dream to move to somewhere like Chicago or Seattle or New York City because I love the feel of a big city. While I was in Freiburg, I couldn't imagine living anywhere than in a small cabin in the mountains.  But now that I am here in Linz, I love big cities again!  And we still have Strassenbahns here, yayyy!  

Today "M" and "I" (a really cool member around my age) took us and the Elders on a drive outside of Linz to see an old castle, but I forgot what it was called, sorry!  It was really fun! 
We looked around the castle and then took a bunch of pictures on the countryside, and just hung out for a while.  It kind of felt like I was in high school all over again, driving with a bunch of friends and rocking out to (EFY) music, taking pictures, and just enjoying how beautiful of an area we live in.  I am glad that out of all the things that I did have to sacrifice by going on a mission, I didn't have to give up having fun and being around people that I love... And I love the people I work with :)  

I am trying to think of other notwendige things to add in this email...

Well, our apartment is HUGE!  
Linz has only been open to Sisters since May, so it is still a new area.  
Which also means a new and clean apartment!  It is definitely weird coming from an area like Freiburg, which had an endless list of potentials, former investigators, and years of work for us to build off of!  And then to come here, where we are still establishing our roots, finding new investigators, and where there is NOT an endless list of people for us to go by on.  But I will definitely not be the first one to complain about all of the organization and cleanliness of our apartment :P  

I should probably get going right now so that I can actually do missionary work tonight!  
Have a great week!
-Sister peterson

1 comment:

  1. Loved her letter!!!! She sounds so enthusiastic and excited and willing to work hard in Linz! I'm so happy for her!