Friday, February 28, 2014

Week 60 (2/10-2/17)

Monday was actually a really fun pday. it was actually probably one of the best, if not the best. The whole zone got together right after pday started at the Wilson building and once everyone was there and had finished some of their emails, we had our ZONE OLYMPICS!! It was quite fun, despite some of the zone not participating in all the events (such as my companion) because they were too busy playing tiddily winks... We had events such as: tawn chugging, wheelchair relay races, chubby bunny, slack-lining, chair stacking and finally who could change into their proselyting clothes the fastest. But by that point it was just us Armenians competing so it was quite brutal... I won but got tackled to the ground by Elder Cook and may have bummed my ankle. But I'm okay!! Just a bit of a limp and a bruise. Nothing major. But because we aren't supposed to keep track of who really 'won'... Sister Brown made us all 'gold medal missionaries' medals to celebrate. And I was the only casualty so it was successful. Plus we did most of them outside which was nice because it was such a nice day. That took up most of the day and we didn't get to do anything else including shop or do laundry so that was a stretch to make it to today. But after pday ended we waited around to see if Olga would show up because when she was at Church the day before she said she would be able to stop by and we could help her with English... but she didn't show so we headed out and tried some others but to no avail. Before we were about to call it a night I wanted to stop by Bella to see when we could have a lesson with her and teach Emanoel guitar but when we got there Janet was there! So she invited us in (again she was in her pajamas) and we reviewed the first lesson to see how much she rembered from the previous time. And she remembered almost all of it! It was awesome. She was telling us about how she wanted to move up to Glendale and start working here so she could come to Church! She said she really wants to come but she only works weekends... but we invited her to be baptized again and she enthusiastically agreed which was so good to hear. 
     Tuesday my plans were changed last minute. So I had originally planned on being in the office all day to roll out iPads to some select zones which we were doing throughout the week as mobile device trainers and I had been told I would be training on Tuesday. But they changed the length of the training and so I got pushed back a day. So the morning was typical. During companionship study Elder Cook and I somehow started having a 'companionship inventory' wrestling match until the people that live below us started pounding on their ceiling to get us to stop... mot much happened that afternoon. We tried to teach Jolynne again but she is really... just... stubborn? not willing to change? maybe has some Armenian heritage? We then went out to grabbed some food with Nate at Chipotle and then brought him to a lesson with this guy Narek that we met a week previous and was probably one of the most interested Armenians that I have met thus far! Well we stop by his house and find out that it wasn't the front house according to the lady that answered the door but when we said we were visiting Narek she gave a mischievous little smirk that should have given us a hint that he was a little odd... okay little is a huge understatement. I can't even begin to explain what happened in that visit. He forced us to watch this music video that he made... here comes the waterfall and watch, watch the face and then here comes the dragon. basically it was a bunch of random videos and pictures that he put together and added little effects to it that were hilarious. Then he wanted to watch some 1 long youtube video and then he got distracted and started explaining his mirror... at that point we knew we wouldn't be able to have a lesson and Nate was asking these obsurd questions such as "what does the pomegranate with the headphones mean?" You kind of had to be there. After the lesson which we were all dying laughing after Nate drove us up to Rita's house to have a lesson and a small 'lunch' which turned out to be a big one which was delicious. She is probably the most awesome Armenian convert we have in the group. She is so sweet and is like our mother/grandmother out here. But after the lunch we had a quick lesson because I guess last time they were over there she had the question about the afterlife and so they started talking about the temple in hopes of helping her get a temple recommend but that day she had the question of why God would send us to this Earth if we were already living with Him before this life. Very valid question! But I stepped in and used the example of why do we serve a mission if we only go home afterwards! After that lesson we headed back and met up with the leadership to go on splits and visit/teach some people. We were waiting around and Ashot showed up after not hearing anything from him for about a week... and he was complaining about the group and saying no one helps him out or anything and it was quite awkward just sitting there having him kind of argue with the leadership. In the end we gave him a blessing and then he went out with Elder Tyler to visit some of their investigators. So when we finally left the office I went out with Elder Cook and Brother Bradley to visit Elizabet, Sona and their cousin/niece Caroline! It was quite funny, Caroline's son Kevin was all over the place but we got brother bradley to keep him under control while we tried to talk to her. She said she would take the lessons though which was cool! We were super stoked. 
     Wednesday was a verrrrrrrrry long day. I was picked up a bit before 8 by Elders Blanchard, Christensen and Perez to go into the office to do the mobile device training!! It really was good to address the zones again. I miss trainings. But anyways we went over the three hour training with two of the zones one after another. Teaching them how to register their iPads, the area books, and the gospel library which are all awesome! During lunch I was speaking with President about the soccer game and telling him about how awesome it was and how we got some potential people to teach from it. He was super excited for us and we were even talking about giving us Armenian Elders a car so we could venture out into Hollywood and more into Burbank. Which is cool! After the meetings we had to wait around for a while for whatever reason and then headed back to Glendale where I was dropped off with Elder Cook and we were off and hitting the pavement. We tried by some potentials but the highlight of the night was talking to this guy, Karin, on the street as we were trying by Souren and his family. We mentioned we spoke Armenian and he was blown away that we spoke it so he asked if he could take a video and that is the video that is now on Facebook! And all throughout the week i've gotten comments, messages and people have come up to me and said they have seen me in that video!! It is viral!! And I hope it keeps going! It has been 5 days and people are still commenting on it and stuff! It has been so awesome. Two guys messaged me on Facebook saying how awesome it was that I learned their language and I'm talking to them about learning more. And then last night at this fireside that we were at this guy came up and said that he had seen it. No idea who he was. THEN today when we were in the mall this OTHER Armenian lady came up and said that she had seen the video!! I'm famous here in Glendale. No big deal. But ANYWAYS. That is what happened Wednesday night! 
      Thursday we had weekly planning because of the multiple days of mobile device training that I had to do Wednesday and Friday. It took forever to get to it though because as we were teaching Jolynne again online we found the video that the guy Karin had posted and we were super stoked and wondering how we could keep it going and make it go viral. As of today it has 60+ comments, 80+ shares and 200+ likes. So I want to see where it is by next week! But then we pumped through weekly planning. made some calls to some solid potentials that Sisters Harding and Brown gave us who were excited to meet us. Then we went and had dinner with Bro Bradley at Chipotle and then he took us out to visit Rima, Ragned and Raymond. We showed them a Bible video and Rima had a ton of questions because she had been researching a bunch online. But it was a really good lesson and we got to answer her questions and they were excited to come to G7 on Sunday. 
     Friday we had another mobile device training. I rolled it out to the La Crescenta zone and Pasadena zone. I was teaching with Hermana Ward instead of Elder Blanchard this time though. But after the long day President gave us a car to use to go outside the mission. It was a long drive home however because of the horrible traffic. We had to pick up Elder Cook in Glendale and then drop off Elder Blanchard down in his area in East LA. Then thankfully we stopped by a mcdonalds to get some directions to our next appointment with Garlen and Desdimonia in Hollywood! And seriously it was awesome. Desdimonia made a very large spread of Armenian food. we were super full of fish, kabobs, lamb and delicious bread. After that we met his daughter and grandkids and then taught them quickly about the first lesson just setting up another appointment and setting some expectations. It was awesome. 
      Saturday we had district meeting which was kind of slow because it was supposed to be on the iPads but my district had just gotten them and so they didn't really know how to use them. So it was slow and I didn't really feel prepared for it...but after that we drove up to Verdugo hills with the other elders and had them drop us off while they taught and we tried by some people. We had this bomb street contact with this lady, Teresa, who at first was accusing us of not being Christian but after we talked with her and answered all her concerns, she admitted we knew our stuff but still wouldn't agree to meet with us. So we headed back down to glendale after trying by others but only getting told to come back another day. so we went back and had some internet, dinner which consisted of little ceasars again and some cake that Elder Cook's parents had dropped off to Ashot to give to us. That night we taught Kris as we were walking from Hambarsoom's whom we haven't seen for almost a month... but we saw kris and it was funny. He thought I was new because I have only taught him twice or so. But anyways we had a good lesson with him and he said he'd come to church. Nate stopped by and gave us some of his favorite street tacos that he found a little while AFTER I left south pas. Typical. 
     Sunday was awesome but I'm out of time so it will be condensed. I gave a talk in church. Everyone loved it. it was about baptism. We had a super funny relief society because neither elder cook or I could follow the teacher and translate what she was saying. we had a lesson with Christina after church which Armen Gvorgian was in and out of... we grabbed some food and then headed to this musical fireside which was awesome. it felt like I was in a baptist church though because it was a big deal. Some NFL football players came and spoke and we had a ton of other musical numbers. Manti Te'o was there if you know who that was. But it was awesome. Super funny to see everyone standing up and clapping and shouting out as they were singing with 'soul'. But anyways. It was an awesome sunday. then we had to walk all the way home from the central building...

Love you all! Have a good week!

Elder DeBry

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