Monday, July 29, 2013

July 29, 2013 - Elche, Spain

Hola everyone!

Well first week in Elche with my new companion. Elche is a lot different than San Fernando. It´s HUGE!!! San Fernando was a small town and this place is huge. I´ll tell you one thing, if I wasn´t good with a map now, I am a complete champ now! Whew!

Things are good here. It´s hard. San Fernando was so warm and welcoming and here they aren´t so much. I heard the culture was different here in the Northern part and boy were they right. I miss my old area a lot. I could joke around with everyone and be myself. Here it is a lot different. But it´s okay. Every area is different. I know I will love it by the end...I sure hope so at least! And yes, there are many palm trees. It´s like a bomb of palm trees. Crazy.

The ward is nice...I don´t know the members all too well yet. We don´t have a member list yet so that is a little hard cause it´s mostly us just walking around Elche contacting and looking at old investigators and going to their house. My feet are very sore. I have never seen them this fat in my whole life. It´s tough but once we get all our materials, it will be better. Opening an area is tough but it will get better. The Lord will help us out. I know he will.

Ha our apartment is very interesting. It´s pretty ghetto, but I like it that way. Makes me think I´m living a rugged life, haha. To use our oven, you have to use fire! You literally have to make fire to get it to work. It´s pretty awesome. It´s definitely in one of the sketchier parts of town though, but it´s all good. We´re safe. We aren´t allowed to go to the church except for on Sundays cause it´s too dangerous. People hide in the palm trees and jump out and it could be dangerous for sister missionaries. It´s definitely different than San Fernando that´s for sure!

My journey here was interesting. So, the mission home is in Fuengirola...about an hour out of Malaga. Usually, they assign missionaries to their trainers in Fuengirola so my zone leaders told me to go to Fuengirola when I got to Malaga on the train. So I got off the train in Malaga and there were missionaries there waiting. They helped me with my of my bags has a wheel broken so you literally have to drag the thing´s a workout...I´m getting strong...and they sent me on a small train to Fuengirola. I get off and Elders aren´t there. It´s ok though, I had the address to the mission office. I asked around and eventually found the office. I knocked....nobody there, uh oh. I didn´t panic though. I decided to go out and ask someone to use their phone. I didn´t have mine since I had to leave it in San Fernando. Nobody would let me use their phone! So there I was all alone walking around this city trying to figure out where to go. Finally this guy let me use his and the AP picked up and told me that everyone was in Malaga. Grrreat. So I just went back to the office and sat down and read the Book of Mormon for a couple hours. Haha, I think that will be the only time I will ever walk around a city for a couple hours by myself on the mission. It was an interesting experience.

But now I have my companion! Her name is Hermana Cameron and she is from Idaho!!! It´s awesome. Pocatello. She doesn´t speak any Spanish so we are working on it. It´s a blast with her though. She is so great. She has a strong testimony and I´m glad she is alright with opening the area and having a trainer who has no idea what she is doing, haha. It´s crazy.

Well, I think that´s about it for now. Oh, I´m an official missionary now. All the official missionaries have holes in their shoes and my shoes are coming apart. The whole front can come off if I pull it. Welcome to true missionary life! Haha. Thanks everyone and we´ll talk next week.

Hermana Kunz

Hermana Kunz with her new companion fresh from the MTC, Hermana Cameron, who Laura will be training. They are opening a new area in Elche, Spain.

Monday, July 22, 2013

July 22, 2013 - My last day in San Fernando, Espana

Hola todos!!!!

Let´s see where to start. Well, this week was interesting. We helped with a bachelorette party and it was super funny. They gave us single in the pic. Never thought I would get one of those on my mission, haha.

Oh man, we went to a member´s house and I thought I was going to have a heart attack and die. I walked in and he had Aragorn´s sword and Frodo´s sword on the wall. Then he had this huge chess set of Lord of the Rings characters. He said it is usually over 1,000 euros. My heart was pounding so hard the whole time. So cool!!!!

All right, well nothing else too exciting happened except when my President called me Friday. Looks like I´m going to Elche tomorrow. President says, ¨Hermana Kunz I have another challenge for you. I am going to open up a brand new area in Elche." He told me this and my heart already began to pump pretty hard. Then he says, ¨Oh ya and you have to come to Malaga on Tuesday to pick up a new missionary cause you´re training.¨ I´m sorry, what President? I guess you could say I´m a little nervous. But I´m really trying to rely on the Lord right now. I can´t do this at all without the Lord. None of it. I´m trying to trust in the Lord cause I´m pretty sad about leaving San Fernando. I have only been here for about 3 months and with Hermana Cerna for one transfer. It´s not normal! Yesterday, I cried the whole day. I had to give a talk, and I don´t think anybody understood anything I said cause I was just crying, haha. I´m really sad to leave this place. All the members have become so special. Trust trust trust. A new adventure for Hermana Kunz. We´ll see how the first week goes!

Thanks to everyone for all your support and prayers! Love and miss everyone! This is the Lord´s work I´ll tell you what!

Hermana Kunz

- Happy Birthday John (Elder Lackey)
- Eyes of love
- "Lady" sashes from the bachelorette party
- Lord of the Rings chess set!!!
- Chani...greatest woman ever
- The family is the Bishop´s family! Oh man, I´m gonna miss him so much. When I told him I was leaving, he started crying. I´m going to his house after this. So sad!!!!

Monday, July 15, 2013

July 15, 2013 - San Fernando, Spain

Hello all!

Well, I just heard that they released the Hobbit trailer and I am a little ashamed to say that I cried. Ya, my companion thinks I am straight up crazy out of this world.

This week was probably the hardest we have had on the mission. We didn´t have many lessons with people. We planned everything really well, but people cancelled on us or they didn´t show up. We did a lot of contacting this week. Plus, there is a big carnival happening here so everyone is crazy and nobody wants to listen, haha. But we stuck it out and learned a lot! And whenever I have weeks like this, I just think that if Frodo could take that much time out of his life and battle the evils of Mordor and the power of the ring, I can handle this. That´s the dork inside of me speaking.

This week we had splits and that was really good. I was with Hermana Leon from Peru and I learned a lot from her. I like splits...I always learn a lot.

Funniest thing ever...we were in a lesson with a member and her dog came out with a diaper on! I wanted to die. I had never seen it before. It was something totally normal for them though. Pretty awesome.

We were at the house of another member´s and we were talking about the famous dance here called Flamenco. They wear these awesome dresses to do it and it looks super cool. Well, the member had a dress and insisted that we put it on. So we tried it on and she had us take pics with it. She wouldn´t let us stand normal...we had to stand as if we were dancing so that´s why the pics I sent make me look a little silly, haha. But it was fun.

Soccer this week was a blast. I don´t know what got into me but I was going crazy. I was running like a maniac after the ball. Since I would always just attack the ball, I would somehow steal the ball from people. I surprised myself a lot...along with everyone else. But then once I got it, I would get so excited that I wouldn´t know what to do with it after and would just laugh. At one point, Elder Lish (zone leader) wanted to kick it from a distance. But he was taking forever to do it. So I started to charge at the ball. Once he saw me running at the ball, he ran at the ball. We were both focused on the ball and ended up totally running into each other and falling over. It kinda hurt but it was funny.

Let´s see what else...oh, we contacted this guy on the street and talked to him for a while and he brought up polygamy. I never thought I would have to try to explain polygamy to someone! The awkward part was that Hermana Cerna didn´t know that we had a history of it. So when he brought it up, she was like no no, no, we never did that! Haha, it was a little awkward to have to say we actually did have a history of it. It was a tough conversation but we learned a lot from it.

I think that´s it for now! My speakers ran out of battery so I took the batteries out and my music magically started playing. So, my speakers are working without batteries. I blame it on the witch.

Thanks for everything everyone! Love and miss you all! Thanks for your support and prayers!

Hermana Kunz

Monday, July 08, 2013

July 8, 2013 - San Fernando, Spain

Hola todos!

This week was great. Started out by going to Malaga to the mission home to get my residency card. I got to see some MTC friends which was so awesome. I got to see my companion Hermana Guymon! I miss her so much. It was so cool to see everyone. We had a great time together. Haha, total Laura moment...Hermana Guymon and I were walking down the street and I was looking down and 100% totally ran into a pole. Straight on ran into it. Hermana Guymon had to catch me from falling. Whew - you could say my head hurt a little. We had to stop walking from laughing so hard. The brother who was guiding us everywhere thought I was going to die and then thought we were crazy for just sitting there laughing. It was an awesome moment.

The wind this week has been out of this world. The scale here is 1 to 5 and it has been a 4 for the past couple days. Crazy! It is especially dangerous to be a sister missionary in it. I tried putting pennies on the bottom of my skirt to keep it down haha. At zone conference, the zone leaders made a rule that the girls had to walk in the back. Haha crazy wind!

Well if any of you haven´t seen The New Vision, GO WATCH IT IMMEDIATELY!!!! It was amazing! I was in awe after it. I loved the soccer example about working together towards the same goal. It has everything to do with the missionary work right now. I´m excited to put this into practice here in San Fernando.

Today we went to Cadiz with a member and her daughter and her daughter´s friend. Her daughter served her mission in England and her friend was her companion and she came to visit her. How fun is that!

Let´s see I think that´s about it for this week. Everything is going well in the mission. I´m enjoying the Lord´s tender mercies in my life everyday and the great spirit I can feel in every lesson. This sure is the Lord´s work I´ll tell you what. It's really cool to be serving such a great cause and helping people become happier through the gospel. IT'S TRUE!!!!

Thanks to everyone and love you all!

Hermana Kunz

Friends from the MTC
Wearing red, white blue and celebrating 4th of July with ice cream
Delicious Spanish cuisine
Cadiz with the member, her daughter and daughter's friend
Laying in a rock that goes back past the time of Christ
Cadiz coast
Celebrating the 4th of July with, what else? A cowboy hat!

Monday, July 01, 2013

July 1, 2013 - San Fernando, Spain

Another week down in the mission. It was a good one. No witch stories but that´s probably for the better. We had a zone conference in Sevilla which was AWESOME. President and Hermana Deere came. President gave some great advice as did Hermana Deere. One thing I really liked that they said was that we should pray for the ability to see ourselves as God sees us. It will help our missions in every way. We had to practice...which I front of everyone and I wanted to cry. But luckily it went pretty well. And we got some good advice.

This week we came up with a fun idea. We made chocolate chip cookies, which don´t exist here, and we have been going to every member´s house and giving them cookies as well as reading Alma 6:6 which talks about missionary work. Then we give them three pamphlets on the gospel and challenge them to share them with someone they know. It´s been fun.

Yesterday, our bishop did something a little different. He told everyone last week to prepare a talk and then he would call people up randomly to give a talk. Everyone was pretty nervous. He called all the names of people and I was chilling by a woman named Uchi, and Pablo (he just got back from his mission from Chile) turned around and looked at me and said it was my turn. Then another member Nef turned and he told me the same thing. I thought they were joking, but what if they weren´t and I somehow didn´t understand the language and everyone was waiting for me. So I got up and started walking, and they both got up to stop me cause they didn´t think I was actually going to do it. Oh boy, it was an awesome moment. The bishop was laughing pretty hard at me. I turned pretty red.

Let´s see what else...oh! Best moment of the week. We were at the bishop´s house to eat and his son is studying music in school. We were talking about what kind of music he likes to play and then he asked me if I had a favorite musical. As I´m sure most of you can imagine, I said Phantom of the Opera. He then brought piano music for it! Plus, they have a piano that is absolutely amazing. They had to have a crane to put it in their house. So I got to play Phantom of the Opera on the piano! It was the greatest moment ever. It felt amazing. I can´t wait to get back and work more on the piano. I miss it a lot.

Alright well everything else is all well! Training is going great. Hermana Cerna is great and we are learning a lot from each other. I can´t explain how much I love speaking Spanish all the time. I can tell it has helped me a lot. I´m scared to have a companion who doesn´t want to speak Spanish after this!

I am going to Malaga tomorrow to do some residency stuff and will stay at the mission home so that will be great. Plus, I will be able to see all my MTC buddies! Yahoo!

Thanks to everyone and love you! Hasta luego! Gracias!

Hermana Kunz

Pic descriptions:
Yummy. Learning how to cook some yummy Spanish food!
Pics from Sevilla
English class