Friday, May 23, 2014

Cassidy's Letter 5-12-14 Snakes and Amish Children

Well this was basically one of the funnest weeks of my mission.

First of all....
I am officially best friends with the AMISH. Yeah, so last Monday we went to go milk goats.. and we were out on a farm in the middle of literally nowhere and there were these cute little Amish kids there helping us. And they were the funnest little kids ever. And also milking goats is really hard. I had no clue that it was such a work out haha. I was milking the goat and I said "Wow you guys must be really strong after milking goats all the time" and one little girl said "Yeah we are really strong." and I said "Can you do a lot of pushups?" and she said "Oh yeah" and I asked how many and she said "like 6."  it was so funny. And the goats did not like me. They kept trying to attack me and I was just getting swarmed with goats. And naturally they kept trying to kick me in the face while I was milking them so there were 3 Amish children holding the goat while I was milking it. But it was successful and then we got to bottle feed these little baby goats! It was so cute. And weird. When I signed up for this mission thing I never realized I would be milking goats with Amish. But I surprisingly loved it. Oh and they taught me some German! (they mostly taught me because they think it is hilarious when I try to say it.. so I say something and they all start laughing at me.) But I can say "HIPDEGAESTIGHT" which means "Hold the goat tight" and they love that one. Hahah so basically we became best friends... and then they invited us to their house to have lunch on Saturday!
So... lunch at an Amish house. COOLEST THING EVER. We get there and there were about 10 kids waiting at the door for us. There are 14 children all under the age of 19.. and they all look exactly the same. There were kids everywhere. And their house felt like I was stepping back in time. So they have no electricity or anything.. and everything was super old fashioned. We ate "Mush" which is mashed potatoes and gravy (and yeah it was probably the best potatoes and gravy ever) and then this like creamy asparagus thing. Super delicious. And all of the children were sitting at this huge long table watching us eat and laughing. It was so funny. Then we helped do the dishes which was fun because they don't have a sink or anything and they get water from a pump.. basically everything is a lot more complicated but also a lot more simple at the same time. It was just such a cool experience to be in their home seeing how they live/eat/work. And the kids were just so excited the whole time. They showed us all around their farm and barn and their cute little buggies. Basically I love the Amish. They are the coolest people ever. And it is just crazy how they are so out of the world. But it is cool I mean they don't waste their time playing video games or on the internet they are out actually doing things which is awesome. But yeah don't worry I actually like flushing toilets way to much so don't think I would survive a week. But it was just super cool and I am pumped to have new Amish best friends!
And the Amish not having a bathroom led to a really fun experience. So after lunch I had to go the bathroom SO bad and naturally we are out in the middle of nowhere so we found this ghetto little store thing.. and we go in.. and I swear I entered the twilight zone. Everyone was staring at us.. and the store was all askew and most of the shelves were empty like it was the end of the world and people had frantically grabbed anything they could... and it was all dim.. just super creepy. But I was desperate. So we walked to the back of the store and there was this sign that said "No public restroom" but the no was crossed out... so I asked the guy that was behind the swinging door and he told us to go back in the back down like 3 dark hallways through the stock room and then we would get to the bathroom.... sketchiest thing ever. I took pictures because I was 90% sure we were going to get killed. I mean the story ends well we didn't die or anything.. but it was definitely the weirdest bathroom experience I have ever had. Next time I am using the Amish outhouse. 
We had a lot of cool teaching experiences this week too! We were out tracting on Saturday night and we met this really nice lady named Juanita who we are going to start teaching. I mean everyone needs to teach a Juainita am I right?  And then we were just walking down the street and this couple came up and we started talking and we are going to start teaching them too! It was really cool how we just kept running into people who are really nice and open to learning more. Thank goodness for warm weather and people being outside! And I am grateful that Heavenly Father is placing people in our paths. My testimony of Him helping us in this work is strengthened every single day.
And we only ran into one drunk guy while tracting. His name was Ernie. And he had no teeth. But he was a hoot. We were talking to him and gave him a picture of Christ.. and he said "I think this is what I need to change my life around. I really need to change" so I told him that it would change his life. Then he looked at me and my companion and said "You guys are like twins..." and then pointing at my companion "And I can tell you are the evil twin" haha it was hilarious. Then he told us that he lets homeless people stay at his house.. and said "Once, I lived under a bridge for 2 years. It was the best 2 years of my life" (Missionaries always say their missions are their best 2 years.. but hey maybe living under a bridge is a close second.) Then we asked if we could say a prayer with him and he said yes, then he put his arms around us and bowed his head and FELL ASLEEP and started snoring while I was praying. Probably one of the funniest things ever. Good ol drunk Ernie
Oh another crazy thing. So you all remember Shirely right? My awesome 90 year old investigator in my last area? So yeah before I left she was really worried about me getting into politics and getting attacked by "snakes". Well the other missionaries went to visit her.. and I guess Shirley said a prayer and said "Please bless Cassidy in Ashtabula that she will know that we love her and miss her. And God please keep her safe from the snakes that will try to attack her." and all I can say is GOD ANSWERS PRAYERS.... because last Thursday I was at Kirtland giving a tour... and we were walking and I almost accidentally ran into this log... and right on the end of it was a HUGE SNAKE like 6 feet long and as fat as like a small tennis ball. And I literally almost walked right into it. And I didn't even scream or anything all I said was "And this is a snake" and the guy we had on tour started freaking out. It was so funny. But it was just the craziest thing because Shirley has been super stressed out about me and snakes... and then I ran into a snake. What are the odds. Thank goodness Shirley is still praying for me haha.
Let's see what else happened. We are teaching a blind guy named Brian! He seems pretty cool. We saw our dungeon and dragon friends again and that was good. Oh and we have to volunteer at this "Pioneer School" is Painsville once a week for 3 hours.. and it is this place where small children come on field trips to learn about pioneers. And we are in charge of teaching them about candles and then helping them make them. And Yes, it is more boring than it sounds. I didn't enjoy the pioneer field trip when I was 8... and I sure don't enjoy it any more now. hahah I think it might be the hardest thing of my mission. Tracting in a hurricane is more fun than teaching a child to make a candle. But it is teaching me patience which I always need.
But yeah I think those are the highlights this week! Things are just going so good. I am loving this area, even if it is out in the boonies and the WEIRDEST place on earth. It is a fun adventure! And the people here are just classic. And they are all really humble and willing to learn which is neat. I know that I am here for a reason and that I am going to have a lot of learning opportunities.
I am just so grateful to be a missionary and to serve and help people. I have so many experiences where we are meeting with people.. and I get like a glimpse of how Heavenly Father sees them, and it completely changes my heart and perspective. Because I really know how much Heavenly Father loves every single one of us, no matter who we are or what we have done. And I truly know that when we put Him first and let Him lead our lives that we will be happier. He always knows what is best and what will bring us the most happiness in the long run. We just have to be patient and trust Him!  It is just important to always include Him in everything we are doing, and we will be happier. I see this every single day.
Have a great week and remember that I love you! 

Love Cassidy

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