Hello friends and family,
Interesting (and slightly scary) news! Our departure date has been pushed a week earlier, so now we are expecting to leave on December 27th! Aye! That means less than a month left! There is still a chance that this will change, but it is the new expected date. The way we found out about the change is kind of funny. Our mail started showing up with red pen scratching out the old date 0102 and putting in the new 1227. It was ominous looking! And one by one more people starting getting the red pen marks!! It was kind of funny and like a missionary version of a scary movie. Dun dun dunnn , who will get the red ink next?!! But my companions and I asked the post office worker what it meant today and they said that our date has been changed so they are asked to change it on our mail.
American Thanksgiving was great! We did a big humanitarian project that was incredibly well organized. It was amazing how well organized it was. We made 8000 “injury kits” and it was enjoyable. We also had a couple firesides that day and Russell M. Nelson spoke to us!! He told us to send his love to our families! So I send his love to you family! In the evening we all got to watch a movie “17 Miracles” it was great! We even all got popcorn! Whenever the whole MTC meets, we meet in a big building (the gym actually) and they set up a whole stand and pulpit area and they have big screens so everyone can see. And we sit in chairs and bleachers. It is wonderful.
It was fun because the Thanksgiving big meal was at lunchtime and then we all made sack dinners so that the cafeteria staff could go home for thanksgiving :) I really enjoy the sack meals we have. I find it relaxing to eat in my residence with my companions instead of in the noisy cafeteria. (We get about 2 sack meals a week on p-day and on the morning we do service.)
I am so happy to hear that Elder Ioannidis has made it safely to France! I haven’t heard from him yet, but it was nice to hear from you Mom and Dad that he is there and to take a quick peek at the pictures you sent me. I will try to take similar pictures with my mission president and his wife when I arrive in Hungary!
Oh! The new Hungarian group came in yesterday and today. There are 7 new elders. We met three of them yesterday because they are international and we will meet the other 5 today hopefully. They will be in their own district but their classroom will be right beside ours. They are our new “kicsis” which means littles. Well its the Hungarian word for little with an English plural “s” on the end. So we are now “usis” which means ancients. With the same English “s”. I don’t know where those terms started, but its being passed down through the MTC generations. Our usis have been gone for over a week now! Wow!
To my friends who have written me, your letters make me so happy! Mika, Jenn, Jenicca, I am working on writing you all back! I love the time I can think of you as I read your letters and think of you more as I respond to them. I love you my dear friends! Naomi, there is also a letter coming for you with some distribution tasks; you’ll see what I mean.
I just love all of my friends and family so much! Whenever I think of you I think of good things. Different people come into my mind at different times and I am happy and warmed by the thoughts that accompany them.
Ohh I wanted to tell you all something interesting about Hungarian. I spend so much of my time on it but don’t write much to you about it. So here is one interesting thing. In Hungarian, the difference between a question and a statement is often only intonation. You have to raise your voice pitch on the second last syllable and then lower it on the last for a question (unless the question starts with a question word like who what where when why etc). So to ask some one, are you hungry? You say, “you are hungry” but change the end intonation as I mentioned. So whenever we forget to do the intonation properly some funny things happen where we are telling people things about themselves instead of asking. Its pretty funny. Especially when you are asking about beliefs or if someone understands and instead you are telling them what they believe and what they understand haha. It won’t be funny in Hungary, but right now as we are learning, it is pretty funny. It is also interesting because it is very difficult to change your intonation in a way you aren’t used to. We all try to go up on the last syllable like in English if we want to ask a question, but it doesn’t make sense in Hungarian. So that is something that I like.
Hungarian also has quite a sophisticated case system. So instead of using prepositions (like: on, with, toward, to etc) for example, you have to put special case endings on words. Maybe I will tell more about it another week because I am running out of time. Hungarian is very difficult but becomes more and more beautiful to me as I speak and understand it more.
I love you all so much! I love it here. My teachers are beyond incredible people. I love my companions, they are so lovely and fun and we support each other and work on improving together.
So much love!!!!