January 17, 2011

Welcome to the weeks end review of Motra Hall's Mission Life in Albania. It was actually a slightly less eventful week on my end, although as always, just wonderful! We of course got our big training that I mentioned last week out of the way, a whopping 7 hour meeting....luckily we only had a 1 hour piece of that! And have been trying to prepare again for two more trainings this week for all the missionaries in the mission. Funsies!

So among the many people who hailed my glorious return to Tirana was my little Motra Korita, who will now be referred to as Marsida, who was a little overly excited to have me back. In fact she was so excited that she held my hand through all of sacrament meeting last week. I endured it well, and just kept looking forward to the small hand breaks where I could go play the intermediate hymns. I know that sounds probably really creepy, but it is just Albanian.....they are quite the loving, touchy people. I'm still not really used to it....oh well!

Anyway, this really just had connection because the Motras here have been helping with Marsida and taking her to the hospital, so we got to have an adventure this week to another hospital with her. President and Motra Neil took us and Marsida, and Marsida's mom to the Greek Hospital here in Tirana to try and schedule a surgery date for her knee. Although the Greek Hospital is a lot more clean and slightly more legit than Vlore's hospital, it was still not a place I would ever want to have to go. I think it made it extra entertaining that we had Marsida's mom with us. She is like....well, a mom. Unfortunately they still weren't able to schedule the surgery because the Dr. had to talk to the Doctor in Greece who would come in and do the surgery. And then at the end he wrote down on a little scratch pad "ACL surgery"...real official I know. But the problem is that that wasn't even the original surgery that was discussed and everything he was telling her wasn't matching up, like recovery time, etc. It was probably one of the few times I've been grateful that I had ACL Surgery because I understood what was being talked about, and was able to tell her later that this Dr. guy was really off on what he was saying. So we are kinda back to square one and will probably have to find a new Doctor or something. Anyway, I guess that gives you Marsida's update. And the moral of the lesson here is that everything happens for a reason, even if it is so you can help someone later....even stupid injuries!

While I'm in the grateful mood I'll tell you another story that made me SUPER grateful for my life and growing up in America. We went to visit an older man and his family this week that we just started teaching. They are referrals from a recent convert, but this time she wasn't able to go with us to visit them, so we went alone. We only found the two young daughter-in-laws home with their little baby boys, but they still let us in to have a lesson. Just a little background: the man we are teaching lives in his house with his wife, his two sons, and their wives and 2 baby sons. So basically the guys go out all day, and maybe work, and the daughter-in-laws jobs are to stay home and clean and cook for the parent-in-laws and take care of the baby. So we tried to get to know these girls and the one who just had a little baby boy who is just a month old is twenty-one and has been married for about 2 years. Although that is at least reasonable, the sad thing about her is that she grew up in a small village outside of Tirana and her older brothers were super typical, jealous Albanian boys and wouldn't let her go to school. So she has like no education except maybe a couple years of elementary school at the most. But that isn't the worst, the other girl who has a 1.5 year old little boy and has been married for three years is only 16 years old now! You can do the math on that one! So yeah, I left that lesson feeling super grateful that my dad didn't sell me off when I was thirteen to go clean some mans home and make him babies.

Other exciting moments this week.....well probably sacrament meeting yesterday. It was one of those meetings where you wish none of your investigators had come to church because all the talks are so crazy. The first guy went on for about 50 minutes with all kinds of false doctrines and crazy science stuff and even had his daughter come up and they did some kind of dialog. I was pretty much not understanding any of it, but I didn't feel too bad about myself because one of the Albanians was translating next to me for a senior couple that was visiting here from Germany and like half way through the talk he said he was sorry but he didn't even understand what the guy was talking about so he stopped translating. Then the second talk was some older single gal who got up and started going off about the commandment to be married and how God commanded Nephi to go back to get him a wife. I know on the surface that doesn't sound too bad, but the way she was going at it was quite painful, especially since we finally got our single, 30 year old actress to come to church. Anyway, luckily she spent that whole meeting like texting or something, so we hopefully will be spared to difficult of explanations in her next lesson. Love it!

Well, the only other exciting news is that last week Motra Yourstone and I got our hands on some tennis racquets and found a court by our house and have thoroughly been enjoying our P-Days there....only for a moderate time of course! A few days of soreness has totally been worth it all to be on a court again. And well, companionship wise we haven't had any big fights yet. We still are debating about who is Senior Companion. I say it is her, but she says it is me. Tough spot we're in! And we have had to agreed to disagree on one other thing.....BYU and USU. So yeah, life is SUPER AMAZING! We are loving every moment of it all, and trying to make the time slow down, but it's not working!

Well I love and miss you all and hope you have a super awesome amazing week!

Motra Hall