Well...first the sad news: I'm no longer in Duncan. :( So, I got the transfer call in the middle of a new member lesson with Will..it was kind of devastating. So, long story short, I am now in Westbank, West Kelowna...with my new companion Elder Boehmer (he's from Calgary, Alberta and is a boss), and I am now a district leader! So, that's a lot of change for me...It's crazy. Saying goodbye to the friends that I have made in Duncan over these past six months was brutal. Especially the ones that I have had the privilege of helping to come closer to Christ through baptism. Judith, Shawnee, and Will are terrific people, and it was crazy hard to say farewell to them... But, as Will and I said, "The Lord has a plan...and so whatever happens is for our good."
SHOUT OUT to the Duncan Ward! As a whole. You are all so awesome. I'm coming back someday. Oh, it'll happen. I love you all!
Leaving Duncan, I'm not gonna lie...was harder than leaving home. Sorry, family, I still love you a ton, but there was a different attachment to these people, it's hard to describe. Boarding that ferry was more heart-wrenching than walking away from the MTC curb...so, that's a thing! Hopefully that means I served well in Duncan, or maybe it just means I'm sentimental and easily attached to things, either way...it hurt. But I'm loving my new area already, so that helps!
So, I guess I should tell you how my travel went... On Wednesday afternoon, I was picked up by my zone leaders in Nanaimo and dropped off at a ferry...alone! AAHHH! I wandered around like a homeless man in really nice clothes on that ferry...scared to talk to anybody especially people of the opposite sex, without my companion... So I took some selfies on the deck, because...why not...and then I ran inside and grabbed some good ol'ferry poutine. Stuff's so good. That was my dinner for the night, too. It was sweet! This random member from Chilliwack came up to me and asked me where my companion was...I told her we do travels alone sometimes, now, and then we talked about Mormons in BC for a while. So, that was nice. Could have been better if a giant kaiju or something surfaced and blew up the ferry, making it so that I had to stay on the Island forever...
So, after a two-ish hour ferry ride, I landed in Tsawassen. The lower tip of the lower mainland. The Richmond South elders picked me up, and one of them, Elder Vanatta, was in my MTC zone! Auld lang syne! He's doing well, and him and his greenie picked me up and took me along their crazy night of picking up other misfit travelling elders coming in from the north. I also got to go to the mission office while they were in correlation meeting, and so that was cool! We street contacted in downtown Richmond. So many people... And I slept on the dirty floor of their apartment, waking up at 5 am sharp to get ready to head down to the Greyhound bus station to catch my 7:25 am bus to Kelowna. So, we got there, scrambled to find some cash to pay the guy for my bags, and then I was thrown onto a massive, smelly bus...alone....for a five, almost six hour bus ride across the lower part of BC. It was fun! Cool scenery, etc. But this crazy guy sat next to me after the bus stop in Merit, and we started talking religion...go figure...and his crazy views on it. He tried to give me the Satanic bible, and told me how we don't actually have free will, because we only have two choices: heaven or hell, life or death. And I was like, "But you still have the choice, even if you know that the death choice is the bad route." And he was ticked at that answer... But he's a cool guy. We got along by the time we got to Kelowna, so that's nice.
Then, I called my new companion on the pay phone at the bus station, and he was like, "Wait...we thought you were coming in at 5 tonight!" At this point it was 12 in the afternoon...but luckily, they were close by, so they grabbed me within the hour and I was off to Westbank.
My reaction to Westbank: this place is nice! It's a very wealthy part of BC, in the Okangan (The Canadian desert...) and our apartment/basement suite is SUPER nice because it used to be a sister missionary apartment haha. It is luxurious. The church building here is almost brand new, as well, and it is super beautiful. The ward members are awesome, so far, too, so it's going well. There's a guy here named Brother Baker that is literally the Canadian Uncle Jean-Jacques. He has that same uber sarcastic humor and it is hilarious. he was surprised that I knew how to deal with it haha. But yeah...it's pretty good. Elder Boehmer's super cool, and we're getting along quite well. Our first P-Day was also pretty awesome. As a zone, we all went to the church building in Kelowna, and played an epic game of free-for-all dodgeball. It was intense. So, I'm getting some cool sport action this transfer so far...so that's good! I will keep you all posted, as usual, on what happens next. I'm loving the mission, the people are great, and the gospel's even better. Love you all!!!
P.S.-Tender mercy of the Lord: so, the first thing I did coming into Westbank was go grab a bite to eat...and guess what restaurant is right next to our house?! FIVE GUYS!!!!!!!!!!!!! And it's not even Canadian downgraded Five Guys, it tastes just like America! IT IS AWESOME!!! But anyways...that is all. ;)
The final goodbye to Norm and Ken. :.(
Eating Burger King with Will...he took the picture...
Last lounge in Sister Arnott's amazing chair...
Us and the Arnott's. Bye, cottage meetings!
Will...he pulled us down to his height. ;)
Us and Brother Schmidt, our ward mission leader. He rocks!
Us and Brother Schmidt's swaggin' son, Parker!
Me and Brother McCullough. He rocks!
Selfie with Sister Ruttan...mom's connections...
Sister Ruttan. She's awesome! Caught her right after the Relief Society meeting that us and Will sneaked into...
Shawnee George! Recent convert, soon to be full-time missionary. Miracles have not ceased!
Weird selfie on ferry #1
My reaction to leaving the Island/weird selfie #2
Weird selfie #3
Totally want to edit Godzilla in the background of this one! Opportunity=taken.
That ferry poutine, though!!!
Scenery on the bus ride.
The beautiful Okanagan Lake!!!!! Legend tells of a sea monster called the Okopogo that lives in these waters...I'm gonna find it!
Our companionship selfie! Elder Boehmer is the best!!!
Our beautiful apartment...it even has its own dishwasher AND electric fireplace!
Me on the bed...makin' my first district leader call to the other elders! Exciting times!
TWENTY ONE PHOTOS!!!
Makes a mom happy ;-)