Monday, January 30, 2012

January 29, 2012 - Sister Griffiths

Today was a special day for our branch in Gyumri because we had our 5 new missionaries in this area bear their testimonies. My sweetheart, myself and the zone leader were the only missionaries left that have been here for two months. The president moved the sisters from Vandazor (our other area) on Thursday. They were really excited to see such a strong branch compared to what they have been used to. The members were so excited to have sisters as they haven't had any for two years. Two of the male missionaries have been out for at least a year. One will be a zone leader and the other will be our district leader here. He will be training a new missionary that just came out 3 days ago from the MTC. He is just terrified would be the best way to describe him.

All the other missionaries know the language well and have been out for at least a year. They are at the stage where they are not sure if they want to go home because it feels like home here. He is at the stage of what have I got myself into. I barely can understand the language and I want to go home where I am safe and things are normal. All of us missionaries can identify with him and within a couple of months, he'll be one of us:)

It was really had to let the three missionaries go that trained us and have been working with us. They are our fathers (your trainers in missionary talk) It was almost like losing my sons again when we left to go on our mission as we left our home in Logan. The good news is that I will get to see them again here in the mission. They are incredible missionaries that were strong in the gospel. strong language skills, their testimonies and love for the people. They were great examples for my sweetheart and I to follow and learn from. Whenever I would get discouraged when we first got here, I would look at them and think to myself that if a 20 year old can do all that is required here surely I can at least 50% to try to keep up with them at my age.

During transfer day (Thursday) for the missionaries, my sweetheart and I had a free day. I decided to be brave and try the beauty shop on my own. My sweetheart dropped my off and went shopping which he loves to do except that it was snowing outside and he was going to the outdoor market. The lady that colored my hair last time remembered me and went right to work. I showed her the ends of the boxes of the color that she used last time and she smiled and said chay (no) that she didn't need to look at them. I thought to myself that she really has a great memory. While I was waiting for my hair to process, they had a lady who spoke English from the cafe next door come and tell me that they didn't have hot water to rinse my hair with and that they would get some from the cafe. So they brought in bucket after bucket to get ready to rinse my hair with when it was ready. She finally called me over to have it rinsed. It reminded me of water in a very, very hot whirl pool. At first I thought I would scream, and then I thought to myself of how often do you get to feel really hot in Armenia and endured it well.

When I sat back up after having my hair rinsed, I was really surprised to see a much, much older version of Pippi Longstockings looking back at me in the mirror. That would be the color of my hair close to the scalp about an inch or two and dark brown with red highlights for the rest. The girl was thrilled with how it turn out and knew I would love it. It is quite a surprise every time I see it in the daylight in the mirror. I have Senior Council in Yerevan tomorrow so they will get to see the new and improved me. My new motto for having my hair colored here is from a modified version of a saying from Forest Gump’s' mother. Having your hair colored here is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you'll get:) The good news is that my sweetheart could enjoy his shopping trip because it only cost $7.00 to get your hair done here so there was plenty of money for him to spend.

I miss you all and hope your day is colored with lots of sunshine and smiles.

Love, Your Senior Armenian Couple

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