FYI: This blog is being taken care of by Sister Martin's mom Sharon Martin - She is posting emails and pictures that I am sending to her each week.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Dodgy chippys and tangy tarts!

Happy September! :)

I would say that September has finally come, but I'm pretty sure that it has been September here for the past month! Strangely enough, I'm grateful that it's September because its less depressing to get soaked in September (when it is actually supposed to be raining) than it is to get soaked in August (when it should be sunny and beautiful!). 

The Ice Bucket Challenge.....According to the English:
So members have been telling us all about this ice-bucket challenge thing that has been going on. My understanding of it is that you basically video-tape yourself as you get a bucket of ice-water dumped on your head and if you don't do it you have to donate to charity....sounds fun(...ny)! 

We were talking about it with some members and one of them was saying that it would be a total joke if she got nominated because everyday in the UK is like a human ice-bucket challenge:

"Hi! My name is blahblahblah and I am doing the ice-bucket we call it leaving the house!!"

What can I say?! The UK and ridiculous amounts of rain are like PB and J! They just go together (my wet shoes and brollies can testify of this!). So I can proudly say that I have been doing the ice-bucket challenge everyday for 15 months! How's that for charity?! :) 

A Lesson In English History!:
Breaking news! I realized that we have a rare, ancient artifact right here in Chorley!!!'s called the library carpets!

We were walking through the library last week and as the overpowering, musty stench of the nasty, ancient carpets hit my nostrils, I may or may not have burst out to my companion a little too loudly:

"I'm pretty sure the library carpets are older than the country!" 

Today I am grateful for the modern housing and appliances that awaits me back home! It is a beautiful country here, but sometimes its beauty does come with the price of putting up with its ripened, aged architecture! ;) 

Call-In Craziness:
Every night we talk to our district leader on the phone and tell him all about our day. One particular night I had remembered a pack of malteasers that a member had given to us and cracked it open as we were chatting away. Sis. C and I were happily chomping away on them, when for whatever reason I thought it would be fun for us to stand on opposite ends of the room and try and throw them into each others mouths in as many different ways as possible. As we were doing this (just picture the chocolate balls flying all over the flat)-- while still reporting on our day to our district leader-- I froze, realized how silly and immature this probably looked and made a conclusion:

This is what happens when you take all technology and free time away from a bunch of 20-something year-olds! 

And this is also the reason why missions are the best! No technology means you can expect the unexpected 24/7! "Good-old fashioned fun" truly does make for the best memories!

What to do when tea falls through:
So we found ourselves in a bit of a pickle (or as they prefer to say here: a gherkin) the other night. 

Planned Schedule: 
6pm: Tea at a member's home. 
7pm: Ward sealing night at the temple (which is just across the street from the member's home). 

What really happened: 
5:45pm: Get out late from teaching appointment. We call the member and ask if they can come and get us so we aren't late for tea. 

Member's response: "Sure thing! Where am I giving you a lift to?"
Me: "Ummmmm (**awkward**)...yours....for tea???"
Member: "Ahhh (**freakout**) we totally forgot, meet us at this random restaurant as soon as you can and we'll have a meal there"
Me: "Ummmm (**awkward again**), we totally would do that any other time, but we have to be at the temple for 7ish so we wouldn't have enough time to have a sit-down meal......but don't worry about it, we'll have tea another time, it's totally no problem! We have plenty of money so Sister C and I can just grab a quick fast food meal on our own instead!"
Member: "Sorry...blahblahblah I feel so bad...." The end. 

We really didn't mind at all grabbing our own tea. We had budgeted wisely and had plenty of money to grab tea somewhere so it was no big deal. Our only problem was that there are no fast-food places in our area, so (very aware of limited time) we dashed for the bus and headed towards town (out of our area) to try and find something.

Halfway into town, I noticed a sign for a chippy (a chippy is kind of like a fish and chips shop but they sell more than just fish and chips. They sell all kinds of random deep-fried things and can be found all over the place in England. You know one when you see one: A. Because of it's smell: they smell like grease and random dodgy meat.  AND  B. Because they all look kinda of dodgy, but usually taste pretty good....just don't ask what they do to make it taste good and you'll be fine). I couldn't even see the chippy but in faith desperately hit the button to get off the bus and hoped that we would find it (I knew we wouldn't have enough time to go all the way into town and back, so this mystery chippy was our only option at this point). 

We get off the bus and find this chippy down a tiny random back alleyway. As fast as we could we ordered our food and ran back for the bus. Despite our best efforts, we still missed the bus by about 3 minutes. The buses only run every 30 mins so our genius plan to grab a chippy and go back to the chapel and eat it before the temple was dashed. 
We realized we had not choice but to eat it at the bus stop (this way we could get straight off the bus and go straight into the temple and still make it just barely on time). We desperately looked around trying to find somewhere to put down our food (they put your fish and chips in newspaper and don't give you a fork and you could imagine how it is literally impossible to eat a chippy without being able to set it down on something). We looked at our dining options and we had 2 choices:

1. There was a rubbish bin with an big ashtray on top that looked clean (because of the rain).

2. A dirty, mud-covered brick wall behind the bus stop. 

We honestly debated the ashtray (it didn't look that bad), but decided it would not look good for 2 sister missionaries to eat off of a ashtray, so we opted for the brick wall. 

We looked like the worlds biggest chavs as we ate fish and chips with our hands (no serviettes or cutlery) in the rain at the bus stop. The top of the wall was angled (kind of like a roof) so the fish and chips was balanced on the angled top of the wall. 

Whenever people were approaching, we would pack up our food as fast as we could and hide it away so we didn't embarrass ourselves. We made so many jokes as we ate our meal. We debated offering to use our food as a object lesson to teach people the gospel:

"Hi! Today we are teaching about the word of wisdom, which teaches you to take good care of your body! "Know ye not that your body is a temple of God? (*insert Paul here*)...."...we are going to the temple right after we are done this big, greasy chippy! LOL!..." 

I also realized that this meal meant we were good missionaries:
My justification and logic for this:
- Samuel the Lamanite preached the gospel on a wall! So what?! We ate fish on a wall, so who is the better fisherman now?!?! (Take that Samuel!)

Pretty much this wayyy too long description of a random story that is probably not interesting or funny to you at all is just to reiterate the point I made earlier:

This is what happens when you take all technology and free time away from a bunch of 20-something year-olds! 

And this is also the reason why missions are the best! No technology means you can expect the unexpected 24/7! "Good-old fashioned fun" truly does make for the best memories!


New Catchphrase of the Transfer:
It seems that every transfer my companion and I come up with some kind of random catchphrase that we use everywhere. Last transfer's was the following:

"Are you calling me fat?!"

We would just say that in response to anything and everything and it was really funny!

As of Friday our new catchphrase is:
"I blame the chippy!"

That will now be our excuse and answer for everything! Try it! It's actually really funny! 

Awkward Tall Girl Moments:
I can truly say that these types of moments happen daily! Especially when you live in a country where everything from the cars, roads, portion sizes and homes are small! 

We were getting a lift to a baptism with some members and I had to wedge myself awkwardly into the back seat to be able to fit my long legs behind the front seat. When we arrived to the chapel, the members discussed with us for ages where they could go to get a meal while they waited for us to be done at the baptism. Once we had helped them decide what to eat for tea, I began the process of trying to get out of the car. I was really struggling to unwedge myself out of the car!! In my attempt to get out, my skirt had shimmied up a decent amount and my knees where exposed (**gasp!! #sistermissionarysin). 

The brother at the wheel looked back to ask if I needed any help getting out and I yelled out "Don't look at me! My knees are showing!" (obviously said in my classic Sister Martin sarcasm!) His YSA daughter (in the back with us) then one-up'd my sarcasm and piped in: 

"Oh my! Looks like we're having TARTS for dinner instead!

And this is why I love this country! They can keep up with the sarcasm! I am truly at home here!!

The Classifications of Rejection: Part 3:
We came up with another form of rejection this week!

Oh Poo!: When a person claims they cannot stop and talk because they are walking their dogs (note the plural form of the word dog is used! It almost seems like its a law that if you have a dog in England, that you need to have at least 3! You rarely find someone who has only one dog). Apparently if they stop walking, their dogs will just twitch and spontaneously implode!!  

Car Shopping: 
As we were driving to the baptism, tart girl made the funniest comment ever! We were looking at cars in car parks and asking each other which one we'd like to have. Her dad goes "I like that black one!". The daughter responds: "It's not black dad! It's African American!" 

The funny part is that they moved here from South Africa only a couple of years ago. So it was a like a two-edged sword (as we'd say in the scriptures!). One-side was taking the mickey out of Americans (i.e my companion--whose family is all from Southern, super red-neck parts of the USA) and the other side was taking the mickey out of their own selves! 

It's official. No one understands me. Literally! 

I actually am starting to want to come home! Not because I want my mission to be over, but because I want my original accent back so people can understand me again.

At least once (or more) a day now, people do not understand my accent. I have seriously gotten a terrible hybrid accent! Everybody thinks I'm Irish or from some really random European places! My companion finds this hilarious! I do not! Time to put the Eh back in this Canadian I think! 

Thought of the Week:
I have nothing to say. I think it says everything for itself! 

Come What May and Love It! That is truly the secret to having a happy life! This phrase perfectly summarizes my last week! This is the reason I have a smile on my face and have loved every second of my mission! 

Anyways! Time to go! Email time is short here in temple land! 

Hope the time goes quickly for you and slowly for me!
Love Sister Martin xoxoxo

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