Monday, September 30, 2013

Week 71 (September 23-30, 2013)

Fogalmam sincs, hogy mi legyen a mai magyar mondatom.

Pictures, and Lack of: We email at a library. This internet lacks the power to upload my pictures. I have a lot of great ones... but they remain on a list. I will see what I can do in weeks to come but it might be a while--please be patient.

Lehi: While tracting, we noticed that the name plates on one of the doors said "Lehi" for the last name. We found it rad, so we held out a copy of The Book of Mormon as we knocked on the door. When they answered, we said, "hello! We noticed that your last name is the name of one of the characters in this book of scripture that we often give to people and discuss with them--would you like to meet with us and learn more?"
Nonetheless, I thought it was an excellent idea. Maybe next time.

I Love Lamp: One of our investigators had a big lamp that she didn't want anymore and she asked if we would take it. Who wouldn't want a free lamp? It was a pretty tall lamp and we had to take it on the tram with us back home. We did just that... I'm telling this story because I have a rad picture of it. Yet, as you already know, there will be a famine of pictures for a while... Gáz!

Bakelit Party: On Saturday we had a ward activity. It was a retro party thing which actually turned out pretty great! We had zsíros kenyér... which is when they spread solid fat onto bread and put onions and peppers on top--sounds great for a party, right? It is actually really good despite how disgusting and unhealthy it sounds. But all unhealthy stuff tastes good, right? Anywho, they played a bunch of old records. 80's still sounds super 80's, even when sung in Hungarian. Everybody danced and we all had a great time.
*AH! I started uploading a picture an hour ago and it just finished! You lucky heads get a picture this week!!

Primary Program: Yesterday was the primary program. It was the most adorable thing I have ever seen in my whole life. They even had the Elders sing one of the songs with them. There is a surprisingly large primary here and it was a real treat to have that yesterday. The song translations were actually really interesting to listen to as well.

Primary Program Reward: As a reward for doing such a great job in the program, the kids got a special treat--a WHOLE hour with Ábrók Elder and Alldredge Elder!! YAY! The teachers asked us to do an activity with them during the third hour. So, we read from the picture copy of The Book of Mormon about how Nephi built the boat and got tied up on and all that good stuff and then we acted it out with the kids. They built a boat with tables and chairs and we got some rope and tied up one of the kids who was Nephi. (We may, or may not have chosen the most obnoxious child to be Nephi... hehe) Anywho, the kids really loved it and I have a new found appreciation for all primary teachers of the world.

*Another picture just made its way! Maybe the internet is fine and it's just my lack of knowledge with the Windows operating system that is my obstacle.

That's about it from my side of the waters. Everything is swell for me. I love these people. I LOVE THEM.

Heck, if you need to act out things from The Book of Mormon to better understand them or to rekindle that desire to read--do it.

Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder
The Kispest Elders
Primary activity with the Elders. This is the 'boat' the children made!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Week 69 this time! (Sept. 9-16, 2013)

Hűha... Múlt héten nem sikerült. Probáljuk még egyszer.

Drafts (1): I opened up my email account to find the draft of my last week's general email. Oops. I guess it didn't send before my computer logged out. So this week, you all get double!!

Curse You, Flyers: So we've been passing out hundreds and hundreds of flyers for English Class to people and dropping them in mail boxes... My personal cellphone number is listed for the information. Mind you, all of the information about the class is on the flyer--and I get called nonstop all day from people asking:
"so HOW much is this Engnlish Class??"
Me: "free."
"is it still going??"
Me: "yes, of course" (as if we would spent time and money on getting a flyer to people about something that is no longer available)
"well, where is it at and when!?"
Me: "it's at Kossuth Lajos Utca number 2 and it starts at 18:00" (just like it's printed on the little paper you're probably holding in your hands)
"do I need to pay???"
Me: "no... it's still free."
Etc. Etc. Good earth. Just in the time of emailing I've been called twice about it.

I Love You, Voice: So I was pretty sick last week--don't worry I'm totally fine now. But I completely lost my voice last Tuesday. I didn't realize how important my voice was especially in missionary work. I came to realize I LOVE my voice. It was interesting while tracting because Elder Ábrók was pretty sick too and we were just a mess at the door because I would try to talk but I sounded like a broken squeaker toy and Ábrók's nose was like a flowing river of snot and he would have to blow his nose after ever sentence. Makes for great memories though--right? Anywho, my beloved voice came back on Wednesday and I'll never take it for granted again--ever!

Néni Party: So this happened just this last Saturday. We were tracting along like, la la-la la laaa. Then we had an older lady answer the door and talk to us for a little bit. She thought we were pretty adorable so she yelled to the back room, "hey giiiirls!! come look at what we have!!" Her grandma girlfriends started to come to see who were were and she explained to us that she and her 'girls' were having a 'girl party'. As luck would have it, they invited us right in. So grandma parties are pretty much like how I pictured them being. They had little cups of juice, a bunch of little baked goodies everywhere and they were playing cards around a little table talking about their grandchildren. We joined right into the fun and they asked us all about ourselves and fed us lots of juice and cookies. Sadly none of them were interested. But heck, I can check "crash a grandma party" off my bucket list now.

Back and Kickin': So, since I've arrived here in Budapest, we have dropped more than half of our investigators and dropped 2 of our baptismal dates that were set. We've been dogged an outrageous amount of times the past couple weeks and I guess the average missionary would say that this is a "hard area" or "bad time of year". I'm extremely opposed to such thinking. But I must admit--bad thing, after bad thing, after dog, after drop, after bad thing has kinda been eating at me lately. I have been trying to stay positive and we really have been working our tails off lately--it just seemed like it's been ages since we had a super stellar and spiritual program with someone. UNTIL TODAY!! We met with a woman for the first time before coming here to email. It was extremely spiritual and we knew that she was feeling it too. We taught the Restoration (my favorite) and it went so smooth and she was loving it. She said, "wow, I love everything that you boys have said and I really want to find out for myself if all of these things are true." She said the closing prayer at the end of the program and it was incredible. Before we left we asked, "So do you want us to come back and teach you some more??" and she replied with, "Of course! I think I need a little time to think about all of this so... let's just meet in two months from now--okay?"
BUT that's okay. You know why? I'll tell you why. Because it was a great, spiritual experience for everyone and it's just what we needed.

I hope all is well on your side of the waters because everything is grand here.

if yew kin reid fis, den gew reid de buk af mormin. kuz iss prolly betir.
Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder

Week 70 (September 16-23, 2013)

Sok Szeretettel Köszöntelek Benneteket!
I Forgot: Elder Cordell Cox is serving around me here in Kispest!! And Elder Dallin Day is in the Budapest Zone!! GO AF!! It's been great to chat with them and get a different twist on things happening recently at home.

I Have Three Questions: While tracting, (I swear, we're always tracting) a man let us in and we began to get to know him a little. He was really nice after we intoduced ourselves he said, "I have three really important questions... I don't know if you boys can answer them, but they've been on my mind lately. They are: Where did we come from? Why are we here? And Where are we going?". Elder Ábrók and I just looked at each other and grinned and replied with, "let us teach you about the Plan of Salvation..." He is a super stellar guy and I'm really excited to teach him.

Are You SERIOUS?!: A guy approached us on the street as we were heading home from a long day's work. He spoke perfect English because he lived in Canada for a long time. We started talking to him about ourselves and told him about what we do all day. We brought up that, "hey, we could even meet personally with you, if you want? We can teach you about all of this stuff and we know you would like it a lot." He reacted as if he just won a car. He was like, "WHAT!?!? Are you guy SERIOUS?! You would really do that for me? Like you would come over to my place and teach me about God and stuff? I don't believe this... This isn't a joke? Like, you would really meet with me? Wow... you guys are incredible... This is amazing. And you're serious--right??" Etc. It deffinately made me smile. I've never had someone so stoked to set up to meet with us.

Untitled: This next story is too darn awesome to have a title. I still smile just thinking about it. Here goes nothing.
So we were tracting. It was Saturday afternoon around 3:00 and we had been going for about 2.5 hours already and we had gotten some good stuff going. We were in a 10 story apartment complex just knockin' away. We knocked on one door, no answer. We went down the stairs to the next floor and we hear a man come out of his apartment and he storms down the stairs.
"What are you boys doing!?!"  he asked.
"Hi! We're just trying to ask people questions, get to know them, and teach them about our church." we replied.
"Well WHO let you into this builiding??" he asked, a little more huffy.
"We don't know, we just told someone what we were doing on the callbox and they let us in." we answered.
"Well, do you have permission to be doing this kind of thing?" he asked, getting more and more angry.
"Of course we do." we answered calmly.
"Okay, then show it to me RIGHT NOW!" he yelled.
"We don't have to show you anything" we replied.
"Well then leave this complex!!" he yelled.
"We don't have to. We have permission and a right to do this." we told him.
"Okay then, I'm going to call the police right now!!" he yelled.
"Go for it." we replied.
And right then and there he called the police in front of us. He gave his name and address and said that two boys were knocking on doors trying to talk to people. "they are RIGHT in front of me, officer. I'm looking at them both right now."
We just stood there calmly... Well, Elder Ábrók was calm--I was pooping my pants inside. We waited for him to get off the phone so we could continue tracting.
"The police are on their way!!" he exclaimed.
"Alright, we'll talk to them when they get here." we replied.
He then ran down the stairs to make sure we didn't escape and so he could wait for the cops. We only had 3 more doors to knock on before we were down at the main floor where the police were going to meet us momentarily. We hadn't had a single "let-in" the entire afternoon but as luck would have it, 2 out of the 3 final doors let us in. They were older people who were very open to talk. While inside their nice comfy apartments we heard the man and 2 police officers going up and down the stairs trying to find us.
The hilarious part is the man waited at the exit of the building to make sure we didn't leave. He must've seemed CRAZY to the police. We laughed about it the rest of the day just imagining him telling them, "no, no, I SWEAR! There were two boys both about 20 years old and they were IN THIS BUILDING! I saw them! They were here just a few minutes ago!!!! Don't think I'm crazzzzyyyyy!!!"
Hahah I still laugh just thinking about it.
Oh and the other rad part is the first lady that let us in started crying after I said the closing prayer and she told me, "thank you so much, I really needed that..."

Well that about sums up my week right there. Everything is going swell here and I'm loving it!!

Vigázzatok magatokra!!
Olvassatok A Mormon Könyvéből MINDIG!
Alldredge Elder

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Week 69 (September 9-16, 2013)

I didn't get a main email from Elder Alldredge to post on this blog this week. :(

He sent a couple of little family emails and said he was writing his main one, but it never came!
He mentioned the work is going great. And he also said he is dreaming in Hungarian now.
He also wrote that he wasn't feeling very well.
So I emailed his mission president to check with him to make sure Cameron was ok-why didn't he finish writing to me?!

This was the response:

"Thank you for your e-mail. I just called your son. He said he is fine! He did not know that his e-mail may not have gone out yesterday. He said the computer turned off just as he was sending it – and he thought it had gone out, but apparently it had not.

But, he is fine.

Your son is a great missionary. He is serving well as Zone Leader – setting a great example to the missionaries in his Zone and to the entire mission. It is such a privilege to serve with him. What a great young man! What a great priesthood holder! What a great missionary! Thanks for raising such a wonderful son."

We should hear from Cameron again next Monday!
Sorry to those of you who were waiting to hear from him too.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Week 68 (September 2-9, 2013)

Egy új világba érkeztem... Teljesen más a nagy város.

Béna: This keyboard can't be switched into English... So, I have to keep fixing all of my "z's" and "y's" and it's quite annoying. The "!" is number 4 instead of number 1... aaand pretty much everything else is in a different place as well.

Budapest: So, here I am in the big city!! It really is a whole different ballgame. My good earth, I miss my dear Evelin a lot. On our first day of walking around everywhere and taking public trans just about killed me. Most már meg kell szoknom sétálni... But it's gotten better since then. I've found that I kinda a little bit missed walking around and talking public trans--you get to see the city so much better that way.

From the Hood: I kinda picked up the Eastern dialect because I was there for so long and I was there at a critical time in my language development. They speak pretty different here in the city and things that were completely normal and understandable over there and pretty funny/incorrect here. I'm hoping to pick up the city dialect because I think it sounds way rad.

My New Companion: Well, he's not all that new. He hasn't changed much since the last time I served with him... I still love him to death and we have a blast and a half. Serving with him again has helped me recognize my progress--especially in the language. I'm now able to understand every word that comes out of his mouth and I'm able to say any blasted thing I want and I know how to say it and say it correctly. It just helped me realize that, "hey! I really can speak this language!" You know, because the progression has been so gradual.

Now is NOT the Time!! ... Or is it?: We were tracting yesterday and we got caught in a nasty argument between floor neighbors...? (they live in the same spot... just on different floors, I have no idea what you would call that.) Anywho, I don't know why but they start complaining to US about the whole situation and all we said was, "wow... We're sorry... But we're just missionaries. We can't really do anything about it." As one of the ladies was heading (storming) back into her apartment, we asked if we could talk to her a bit. She replied harshly that now was NOT the time. We began to tell her that what we had to say could help her. She said we could try. After about 8 minutes she was completely calmed down and really digging everything we were saying. Come to find out, she is super religious and searching for the truth! We're going back pretty soon--don't worry.

Well, we have to run a bunch of errands today and get some stuff ready for our zone training that we have on Thursday. I'll be sure to take lots of pictures and send them next week!! Everything is great over here! I'm loving life!

I only love my life because I read from The Book of Mormon. Seriously, how lucky are YOU that you have your own copy?? Read it.

Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Week 67 (August 26-September 2, 2013)

Transfer Calls: So yes, this morning we received our transfer calls. I've always wanted to serve in Budapest and I've always wanted to serve with Elder Ábrók again. Well, let's just say that I got that all in one! It's not what I was expecting at all, but I am now going to be one of the Zone Leaders for Budapest and my companion will once again be the one and only Hungarian Elder here, Elder Ábrók!! It's funny because it was about this time last year that I got the call that I would be serving with him. Now here we are, one year later, doing it all over again!! This next transfer is actually going to be 10 weeks long. So after this transfer I will have served with him for 16 weeks! I'm so stoked--I love hanging out with Europeans! I will be serving in an area of Budapest called "Kispest" {KEY-SH-PESHT} which is a group of districts in the Pest side of Budapest.

Good News and Bad News: The good news is that I get to learn how to use the Budapest bus system, tram system, and metro system really well. The bad news is that my companionship doesn't get a car. Boo...

Called It!: As soon as I found out we would be housing 2 new Elders at the beginning of last transfer, I told Elder Nabrotzky, "I promise you they will not be moved into a new apartment by the end of the transfer." We were told they would move out in under a week... but without an apartment even picked out I knew the outcome would be something different. Sure enough, they will be moving into their new apartment tomorrow night--the day of transfers. But you know, I actually really enjoyed having them around. One of the Elders who stayed with us is actually the new assistant! He was assistant like, 5 months ago but he broke his foot and had to return home for a while. This was his first transfer back and now he's really to finish his assistant-ship. In the end, I really did love having two other Elders with us in our apartment.

A New Baptismal Date: For my last week in my Miskolc, we were blessed to be able to set up our 7th baptismal date. We've been meeting with this lady for a while and we finally hammered down and really committed her to pray about a date. She said that she prayed all night after we left and when she finished, she grabbed her calendar and a pen and wrote down that she would be baptized in October. She said that after she set the date for herself, she had an overwhelming sense of peace take over her that she's never felt before. She's so happy and excited about her baptism.

To The Temple: One of our recent converts who was in the group of 5 that got baptized in June is actually in Germany right now going to the temple for the first time. We got him started on his genealogy work and he was able to take about 14 names to the temple from his family to do baptisms and confirmations for. One of them being his own mother who passed away when he was younger. The whole trip was already very special even before he left because of how he got the money for it. The opportunity presented itself but it's obviously not cheap to travel to Germany and be there for a week. He prayed a lot about it and as luck would have it, he received a letter in the mail about his apartment. Instead of being a bill, it was just the opposite! (We still don't know why) The ending amount that he was getting was the same amount as the temple trip. Someone is definitely watching out for him.

Why That Building?: We were tracting. We had 30 minutes before our next program and we really felt like we needed to be somewhere specific. We walked into an open apartment complex that jumped out at us and began from the top floor. The rejections were a little more harsh than usual and I began to feel discouraged about our decision to tract out that certain building. With 5 minutes before our next program, we wanted to knock on just one more door. You know the drill. An older lady opens the door, smiles, and invites us right in. We get to know her and her husband and they seem really really nice. Afterwards, I didn't think much of it. "Okay yeah, we really met a nice old couple... but we felt way strong about that building... So what's the big deal?" I thought.
Sure enough, three days later we are going to one of our investigator families that we meet with weekly and that same old couple is sitting in their living room. Come to find out, they are the grandparents of that family! They were so happy to see us again and the older man went on to explain that, three days earlier, he had been praying all that day for God to send someone that he could talk to in order to help strengthen his faith. He told us, "I know God sent you two boys to us that day and that you were the answer to my prayers."

Farewell: Well, I have absolutely loved my time in Miskolc. I had some incredible companions, and I met a lot of incredible people. I have learned so much these last three transfers here and a lot of change has taken place. Miskolc will always be a very special place to me. We gotta jet now because I have to print out a bunch of pictures and then we're having a little goodbye party for our family night activity.

I love you all!
Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder

You thought I forgot, didn't you? NOPE! Hey all, read from The Book of Mormon--it will help you in your never ending conversion to Christ's one true Gospel.
We discovered an all you can eat Chinese place that only costs 850 Forint! It's SO great.

I'm going to miss having to answer her many many many questions.

I got an awesome Miskolc University shirt!

We got matching ties from our little friend.

I LOVE this family! I'm going to miss them so much. Their faith is incredible. 

She always sends us home with loads of food. Sweetest lady ever.