Monday, August 3, 2015

Galway Race Week

August 3, 2015

It was quite the busy week in Galway! Obviously the races were happening all week long, so that it made it hectic, but I did a lot of traveling as well. I went down to Limerick twice this week, which is a little over an hour by bus. I went to Limerick on Tuesday for our district meeting and then afterward we stayed for almost the rest of the day because I and Elder Christensen went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders for the day. For our zone in Limerick, our zone leaders are Elder Ilori and Elder Mulville, and I was with Elder Mulville, which was really fun! He is from California and is just great at talking to everyone on the street. We went around the city centre and street contacted people there. Then we had this lesson with a woman who is a member along with her daughter. It was a real interesting lesson because the daughter who was probably about 11 years old was really energetic and she played this game with Elder Mulville and I, and the loser had to stick their face in this mound of flour on a plate. We played twice and I and Elder Mulville each lost once, so we had our faces covered in flour before we wiped them off. But it was a great day in Limerick.

We went to Limerick again on Thursday morning because Elder Christensen had a zone leadership meeting with all the other district leaders in our zone. During their meeting, I went out street contacting with the companions of the other district leaders. One of them was in the MTC with me, so it was fun being with him again. We were just in Limerick for the morning and went back in the afternoon.

So let me tell you a little bit about everything with Race week. First off, the city centre and surrounding areas were crowded all week long! We tried to not be there too much, but when we were- there were just so many people around. We talked to a few people and they said at about 3am every morning, it looked like a bomb went off in the city centre. They said that there is just shattered glass and broken items littering the streets and sometimes people's waste all over too. They say all the pubs are just completely filled all night long and there is so much noise and violence. The two other Elders in our flat got back really late on Thursday night because they were in Limerick because Elder Salinas was translating for a baptismal interview, but anyway they got to the bus station in the city centre after 10 pm and on the way back to the flat they said there were just so many drunk people and noise and craziness going on. Apparently the city does some real heavy duty cleanup in the early hours of the morning. So all the real bad stuff I never had to see luckily. During the day time it was actually pretty cool because there were so many people around in nice suits and fancy dresses. Especially on Thursday! Thursday was what they call ladies day where all the women dress up super fancy with expensive dresses, and lots of makeup, and some with ridiculous hats like they do at the horse races in the US. Some women just do it for fun, but some take it really seriously! There is a prize for the most beautiful woman or best dressed woman or something like that on Thursday, so some women went all out for that. I think the prize was €10,000 or something like that! So it was real interesting.

On Wednesday we biked to the race track (which was pretty far) just to see what it was like. We got as close in as we could without paying which was actually a really good view. We were on the opposite side of the track from the grandstands, so we got to see a horse race happen and see all the vendors and all the people out there so it was pretty fun! There was a lot of betting on the horses and everything, so when the horses crossed the finished line there was all kinds of yelling and screaming. And we did try to talk to some people around there about missionary work and handed out some cards, so that we would still have a missionary purpose while we were there. But I'll probably never see it again so it was fun being in Galway at this time.

Our week was actually really good! We had a few lessons with investigators and so it was fun to start doing more teaching. On Saturday we helped a member move houses, and their new home is really close to our flat. We actually had quite a few people at church on Sunday too. There were probably close to 40 people not including us missionaries. There were a few visitors from the US and even one young couple from Phoenix!  I am really excited for this week because we have a lot of lessons set, so hopefully they will hold up and we will be able to teach a lot of people! 

I have been studying in Alma 26 and it is such a great chapter. All the verses are so powerful, especially verses 11 and 12 about how much power and strength we can have through Heavenly Father. I also really love it because it talks about the sons of Mosiah and how they returned from their missions of preaching to the Lamanites and how much joy and happiness they received from bringing people unto Christ. It's really great!

I am doing wonderful and I am excited for all my upcoming opportunities!

Galway Races! 

At the Race Track
Elder Christensen and Elder Oxspring




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