Monday, February 28, 2011

If there's anything about Korea that's similar to Utah, it's the weather‏

Hey everyone,

Holy cow. Bombard me with emails why don't you? That was awesome. Kadin, why do you keep getting hurt? You fool. Maybe you should just stick to video games and being lazy. Haha. Nice job at SUPAF. I never got to wear a cool outfit like that. But you do have to admit a tux is pretty legit. Good luck with the toe, the foot, the nose, and the arm (that's my prediction of what's going to break next). Keep me posted.

Kylie, way to go at being sweeper. Sounds like you're pretty good. Mom even told me you're better than Kadin. Haha. Just kidding. Just because I'm halfway around the world doesn't mean I can't make fun of Kadin still. Keep practicing.

Danielle and Jesse, you're awesome. "We're on fire!" Haha I love it. To answer some of your questions, I'm actually not freezing. I'm doing good. My coat keeps me pretty warm. And yes the floors are heated and we sleep on mats. They're called a yo. They're kind of like those mats we got when we were kids and they fold up into chairs, but not quite as thick. They're pretty comfy. I like them. I haven't heard anything from Anna. Isn't she by the DMZ? I don't know. I guess we'll see.

Well it sounds like you've guys have had quite the week. Sorry I wasn't able to meet up with your Korean girls. That would have been fun to meet them. Maybe later when I'm in the city. I'm glad they cooked some Korean food for you guys. That sounded like quite the party. Do you remember what it was called? I haven't really had anything too crazy yet. The food is way good.

Mom, thanks for the questions. No, we haven't visited that one kid again. We haven't seen the mom at church for awhile so maybe we'll check up on them. There's a piano at the church. It's not too bad. I'm pretty sure some of the keys are out of tune though. You know how church pianos are. We teach English every Friday and it's just at the church. I love teaching English class. It's so fun. We just teach them random phrases and words. Like last week I taught them "stuck in a slump" and then we played Dots and Boxes. It was fun. We're trying to start up a youth English class along with that too but no luck so far. My shoes are doing good. My feet get a little cold but not cold enough to have you send foot warmers. Thanks though. The language is still really hard. I'm starting to understand a little better. I can pick up a few words here and there but it's still really hard to speak. And it's way hard to pronounce everything. I just sound like a dork. But it's all good. I have a lot to learn still.

Alright well now that I've typed a novel I'll tell you about my week. We went on exchanges on Wednesday and Thursday. I went to a place called Won Ju. It's about 2 and a half hours away from us. It's a nice sized city. It's not as big as Seoul but it's bigger than Tae Baek so it was fun to have a little change. The missionary I was with is named Elder Rayes. He's a rock star. Literally. Before his mission, he was in a band that toured all over the US and parts of Europe. So he's a little older than everyone else but he's way cool. It was fun to work with another missionary and see how they do things.

The weather has been pretty nice. At least it was at the beginning of the week. And then yesterday after church it started snowing again. It hasn't stopped yet. Because of the snow, some of our plans yesterday fell through so we just shoveled our parking lot again, which we just finished the day before, and then hit the streets and shoveled in front of shops and stores. It was some good service, but I'm a little sore now. 

As far as investigators go, we're still working on that. We have a couple people that would be golden. They come to our English class and they're just awesome. We just need to pick them up and teach them and they'd be baptized in no time. But they both have something holding them back. Mr. Cole is still unsure about his wife and the other one, Rachel, has her parents telling her to go to their church. We're not sure what to do. Hopefully we can figure something out soon.

Well I'm still doing good. Missionary work is hard. Some days are better than others, but I'm hanging in there. I'm banking off of Ether 12:27 everyday. I have plenty of weaknesses so I should be getting some strengths eventually. Thanks for all the prayers and support. Let me know about Jordan's call. If he's doing a map guessing thing my guess is Chile. That just popped into my head so I'm going with it. It was good to hear from all of you again. Talk to you next week.

Love, Elder Dorius
PS here's a picture of me exercising in the snow this morning. You'll notice I'm still in my pajamas. We just went out for a couple minutes and took pictures of us "exercising." Haha.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Here's a few pictures. There's a couple of the snow and the last couple is the inside of a Bhuddist home. They live by us and pulled us inside to eat some food. It was pretty cool.

I Played Ping Pong With A Korean

Hey everyone,
In response to your last email we're only supposed to use the internet for about an hour and 15 mintutes. The internet is free unless we're on the train. We usually try to not email on the train so we have more time and use less money. Hopefully that answers your question. I don't really know what else you'd use. Regular mail takes forever to get here and we only get it at meetings and stuff. So I suggest not doing that. That's just to you, family. To anyone else, you can write all the letters you want.
Well this week has been pretty good. I went to the hospital with my companion. That was fun. He's all good now, he probably just ate something bad. We met with Mr. Cole this week. If while you still have your Korean girls I can tell you his Korean name and they can translate. 권 순 기 is his name. We talked to him about families and we showed him pictures of our families. That little photo book you made is awesome. He really liked them. We were hoping he would become a new investigator but it's not quite official because we didn't set up another definate return appointment. We think his wife isn't on board with the church. He says she likes us but we're not for sure. We're still trying to meet and talk with his whole family. But later that night we had English class and he was the only person who came. So we played ping pong. It was sweet. He's way good. My Sem Co ping pong playing days are paying off. Slightly. He still beat me but I didn't get destroyed. I was impressed with myself. I can play ping pong with Koreans. Boo ya. Yesterday we had a lot of people at church. 10 people plus the missionaries. That's a new record for me. We also had an investigator come, except we didn't know until after the meeting. In our church there's a window that connects the kitchen to the meeting room and I guess he was in there the whole time. So we talked to him afterwards and set up an appointment. Our branch is doing good. We're getting some of our less actives more involved by having them give prayers. Some of these people have never prayed in public before, and maybe not even on their own, but they do it. So hopefully things keep picking up.
The language is still really hard, but I'm starting to understand things a little better. I do a lot better in a gospel setting just because I've learned more words in that category, but I'm learning new everyday words just by being out on the streets and talking with people. What kind of words are your Korean girls teaching you? Is dad getting any better?
St. George got snow huh? Nice. It hasn't snowed too much more here lately. It actually gets pretty nice during the day, but at night it gets cold. It gets just warm enough to melt the snow and then everything freezes again during the night. So everything is pretty messy. It seems like my shoes are constantly dirty.
Well I can't really think of anything else to say or ask. Keep thinking of questions and I'll try to respond to them. Let me know of anything cool that happens. Good luck with the snow and enjoy the rest of your weekend. Unless it's over. It might be by now. So hopefully you enjoyed it and have a good week.
Love, Elder Dorius

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Sorry for the delay

Hey everyone,

First of all happy Valentine's Day. It's not quite Valentine's Day over there but it's close enough.

It sounds like KC's farewell was great. I'm really quite disappointed I missed it. He's going to be an awesome missionary. You'll have to tell him I miss him and hope the best for him. Also tell him to send me his address. You'll have to tell Berkley happy birthday for me as well. I'm glad you reminded me. It's a good thing you guys are around to keep me posted on all my friends. Who needs facebook when you have parents?

Well this week has been pretty good. As you heard, we did get a lot of snow. I'm not sure exactly how much, but we think we have a least a foot. There's another area in our zone that got a meter and a half. It's crazy. We spent nearly all of Saturday shoveling our church parking lot. I took some pictures so I'll see if I can attach them. We went to the temple on Monday and did a session. The Seoul temple is really small, but it's really cool. Then after the temple, it's a tradition to go to Taco Bell. I guess there's only a couple in Korea and one of them is pretty close, so we went there for lunch. They told us in the MTC that we wouldn't eat Mexican food for the next two years. We really showed them. Ha! We also went to the War Museum. It was way sweet. It had tons of stuff from ancient Korea all the way to modern. I took pictures there too. We didn't have tons of time and a lot of stuff was in Korean, so I wasn't able to learn much. But it was still fun to see all the stuff. Then the next day we had a combined district meeting. That was good. I don't really need to tell you all about it though. But we took a train back to our area that went along the coast of Korea, so I got to see some of the ocean. It was sweet. But it looked cold. After my mission I might have to go check out the nice, warm beaches of Pusan. 

This week has been pretty rough as far as numbers go. There's not too many people out on our already barren streets, so it's been hard to talk to people. However, we do have this one guy who's been coming to English class for over a year. I think I mentioned him in my last email. In English we call him Mr. Cole. We talked to him about meeting with us and taking the lessons. He really likes us and he said he thinks he's ready. Our goal is to baptize him and his family before this transfer is over. We also have another English class student that we want to baptize. Her English name is Rachael. 

Ok so I typed that on Monday but we had to leave for our appointment. I was just going to finish it on the train, but the trains were down because of the snow. So we ended up taking a bus and didn't have internet access. But now we're back and we got permission to email. Sorry for the wait. Hopefully I didn't make you worried or anything.

We went to Seoul for special training, and then afterwards my companion was working on a  program on the office elders' computer. Anyway, during that time, I went street contacting with one of the AP's. It was crazy. There's so many people in Seoul compared to our area and this missionary was a beast. It was really cool to see him work. We almost talked to more people in 30 minutes than we do in one day here. It was fun. Except it would be more fun if I could understand what people were saying. But I do what I can.

My companion is sick right now. This is the first time we've been out of the house today. We think he might have food poisoning. I'm not sure. We're actually heading to the hospital when we're done here. It's a lot better being on the other end of the hospital visit. But I've been pretty bored trapped in the apartment studying all day. Hopefully he gets better. Oh just so you know. I've used my debit card a couple times now. I was out of mission funds and had to use some personal funds for our bus tickets. So if you can keep an eye of that every once in a while, that would be good. 

Well sorry this was a crazy email. I'm still doing good. Hopefully everything is doing good with you guys as well. Talk to you next week.

Love, Elder Dorius

PS As far as meeting up with Kate and Eva, I'm not sure. I don't think we'll be in Seoul and I'm pretty sure we wouldn't be able to leave to meet up with them. But you can give me their information and I can refer them to the missionaries in their areas. If that's ok with them. :)

A man of few words...

This was our email on Sunday.
Hey it looks like you just sent your email a few minutes ago. I don't have much time right now. We have an appointment with some kids we met last night and then we're heading to Seoul again. So I'll email you guys on the train. If you get this in the next couple minutes you can let the family know. Sounds like KC did good. I'm excited for him. I'll think about my week and then I'll send another email in a bit.
Elder Dorius

Monday, February 7, 2011

I'm on a Train

Hey everyone,

Thanks for the emails. It kinda helps to have questions to answer. I'm actually on a train right now heading to Seoul again. We go there pretty often. But anyway, we have to pay for the internet here so I have to be fast. That's why I went to the MTC. I have good training.

Seoul was awesome! We had mission conference so we got to see all the missionaries again. Elder Stanley is in Incheon, which is on the opposite side of the country as me. So I probably won't see too much of him, but he's doing good. My apartment is pretty small. But then again I've never lived in one so it's hard to compare. We have a little kitchen connected to another room where we study, then we have our bedroom, and then another room with our clothes and luggage and such. So not bad. Especially since we sleep on the floor. That doesn't take up much space. But actually it's quite comfortable I think. I fall asleep quickly and it's hard to get up in the mornings. That must mean I'm sleeping well. Anyway back to last week in Seoul. We went to a bath house. That was...interesting. I won't go into too many details. You can ask your Korean girls about them. But it was strange at first and then you just forget about the awkwardness and it's great. You feel really relaxed and refreshed afterwards. I think I had American food at least once everyday. They have McDonald's and Burger King here, as well as some other little places like Seven Eleven and Dunkin' Donuts. So it was pretty fun to have a nice juicy burger again, but strange to order it in Korean. Like I said we had mission conference. That was the whole reason why we went to Seoul. My mission president is way cool. He gave us some really good training. Then we had some food and played some games. It was quite the party. There were about 14 missionaries staying in one house. It was a little crazy, but still fun.

Tae Baek is doing pretty good lately. We've had a couple little miracles. Since there's not very many people out on the streets we've tried calling more people, and because of that we have two appointments this week. We also stopped by a less active family's house last night and they let us in and we shared a message. Apparently this family hasn't had the missionaries over in like 5 years. So it was way good. And they have a son who plays the piano and is learning how to play the guitar, so they wanted me to play something. I introduced him to John Mayer. I told him to google him. John needs to hook me up when I get home. He'll be huge here by the time I'm home. Haha. Luckily I have that though because we think it will help maintain a good relationship with the family and we can reactivate them. Also before we left, we stopped by one of our English class students's work place. He's a middle aged man with two kids. He's taken English from us for a little over a year, but never took the gospel lessons and the missionaries have never met his family. Until today. While we were talking with him his wife walked in. Boo ya! They're way cool. We want to baptize them. So hopefully that goes well. We're going to try to set up some teaching appointments.

So that's kind of what's up with Tae Baek. Korea is way cool. Everyone calls me handsome. Like seriously. Everyone. It's weird. I even got called a movie star. But I just accept it. I figure this will never happen to me again so I'm living it up. I'm doing good with the food. Since we never have appointments, we usually cook all our meals, so it's nothing too intense. Oh except I did try some of that silk worm larvae. A lady was selling it on the street and my companion had me try some. It wasn't too bad. But it did leave a nasty taste in my mouth. The weather has been pretty nice lately. When I got on the train it said it was 4 degrees celsious. However you spell that word. So it's at least above freezing. Well I can't think of much more to write about. I'm still doing good. I don't think I need anything. Just keep praying for everyone. I'll talk to you next week.

Love, Elder Dorius

PS Last week it wouldn't send to mom's address. I think something was wrong with msn. I'll try both this time and see how it goes.