Passing judgement on this week based on title of this email might lead one to believe that it was something short of "great" but it was really pretty good haha. We're in the dog days, but things are going well!
Started off the week with transfers. Got up at 3:30AM so Elder Anderson could finish packing everything up. Including his big ole breadmaker haha. I ugly-slept most of the 2 hour drive to North Little Rock. A few hours later, Elder Peterson arrived from the Memphis caravan. He had been serving in Germantown, TN, another wealthy neighboring town to Collierville! Glad to have him in Hope! He's from Malad, Idaho.
That pretty much took our whole day, but we hit the ground running on Wednesday.
We had an appointment with our lady at the museum in town, and studied a little bit with her. She's read a lot of the Book of Mormon, and later this week even prayed about it and said she feels good, but... I don't know how much of it she understands cause she doesn't see what she needs to do or change because of that yet. Which is tricky.
We had our first new member lesson with Debbie, which went well, and then we introduced Elder Peterson to Gypsy and Devin, Sister Martin's monkeys haha. We did some finding in Prescott and gave a Book of Mormon to a Baptist minister. And then a less-active couple and their family had us over for a 4th of July cookout with hamburgers and brats. Man, brats are good.
As we pulled back into our apartment complex, there were cars parked all along the road on either side of the entrance. Turns out the Methodist church across the street was having a firework show. So we stayed outside a little longer and enjoyed a pretty doggone well-choreographed 15 minute firework show. Way to go, Methodists haha.
Did some walking around Thursday morning, sweating like a dog and met with another less active couple. One was pretty drunk which was too bad, and not just cause it was only like 4:00PM. :(
We had a good lesson that evening, though, with an investigator couple. I was way more bold than I ever would have been at the start of my mission. But they ate it up and enjoyed it, and said that they feel the spirit when we come over. When people recognize that, good things tend to happen. (Although they did cancel our appointment for yesterday...)
On Friday I introduced Elder Peterson to some of our favorite people around town, who we've helped out between chipping plaster off of walls and the community fish fry thing. We've gotten to build a really good relationship with them all, and they're as close to me as any of the members here are. One of them owns an antique shop that's actually super cool. We chatted with him and the ladies working at the store for a while, and then he gave us a tour of the building he's renovating and fixing to move into. It is dang cool!! It used to be an old department store, and looks like it hasn't been touched much since the 50s or 60s. (So uh... #vibes) It made me want to do a photoshoot in there. But it'll be all fixed up and painted over by the time I could. Rip.
We met with the lady at the chamber of commerce again, and got ourselves signed up to have a booth at the watermelon festival! I'm super excited for that even though I might get heatstroke and die. It'll be fun, though, and an awesome grand finale to the transfer. President Hansen even approved my request to bring members of my district down to join us. So that'll be fun!!
That evening was our branch Independence Day cookout. We arrived early and it was like 98 degrees in the car. Other people started showing up, and then the grill came, and then as soon as we got hot dogs and burgers on the grill, it got dark and crazy windy. Everyone had to hold onto their stuff. By the time we were serving up, it was sprinkling, and once everyone was eating, a lightning bolt struck close and LOUD! It was pretty sweet. We just kept enjoying our little barbecue in the storm and it all worked out. We were under a shelter fortunately, so we stayed pretty dry haha.
We were busy again on Saturday, but our time in Prescott went to the dogs. We had no luck whatsoever. We had a great lesson with Carmelita on the Word of Wisdom. She's living it already and it's just amazing how receptive and in tune to the spirit she is. She's amazing. (And even sang a few lines of some gospel hymn for us in her excitement about the Iron Rod in 1 Nephi 8. Dang, that lady can sing!)
Walked around Hope some more that night, walking around parts of this little town I had never seen before. Met some cool people that I'll hopefully be able to write more about next week! :) while walking, we passed this little shop in a sketchier part of town that we pass through on our way to church. Since I got here, there's been this little table sitting out front and I was sure it was a record player just sitting out there. Sure enough. A little note inside says that they got it at a yard sale but never ended up using if and that it works great. FREE.
So... if any of you wanna come pick that up and hold onto it for me... it'd be much appreciated.
Sunday was good! Carmelita came and we had pot luck afterward. We went out to find some new people in easily one of the nicer neighborhoods I've been in since leaving Collierville. Funny that the nice neighborhood is where I get bit by a dog.
We walk up to the first house. There are two cars in the driveway. Two pretty big, kinda intimidating dogs are leashed up and napping under the car on the left. We stepped onto the driveway and one barked but didn't move from the car. So we go around the other side of the car on the right, around towards their front door. Well I didn't get very far before the one dog that barked turned the corner around the car on the right and kinda ran toward me. I took a step back out of surprise, but still just expected it to circle me and bark and maybe nudge my legs like most people's loose dogs do. (I've gotten a lot more bold around dogs since the start of my mission, too. I'd never had a problem other than being annoyed by their barks. Big ones, little ones, cute ones, scary ones, they've all been ok. Until then.)
But nope. That sucker turned it's head and went for my left leg. I stepped back quickly, losing my pant leg from off its tooth, and let the adrenaline try to fade down. The owners had magically appeared out of nowhere and pulled back on the leash. I gave the shakiest "we're the missionaries" spiel of my life. The guy ended up being nice and kinda apologetic, but not even a sympathetic return appointment was to be had. As we walked away, I could see a tiny hole in my pants where a tooth had gone through, and a little bit of pain under it. Walked and talked around for another hour or so, meeting a prison chaplain biker guy who was pretty cool and said he had been on the run from the FBI for 2 years before turning his life over to Christ haha.
We got back to the car and for the heck of it, I hiked up my pant leg, expecting maybe a little scratch. But no, there was a good sized little scab already, a little smaller than an m&m. I didn't realize he drew blood but yup. I got off easy, but it still freaked me out a bit and gave me something to make my weekly email exciting. To add insult to injury, the dog's name was "Goofy," smh. Last I checked, Goofy didn't go around nibbling on the legs of the Lord's servants.
So uh... that's been the week. Cool people, sketchy people, hot days, rainy days, one fish, two fish, red fish, mean dog. Wait--?
Hope y'all have a blessed week. The people (and dogs) down here could use your prayers.
It might be funny if you sent pictures of puppies but at least say hi, too
Plz don't send a puppy, it's against the white handbook and probably the law
303 West 23rd Street, Apt. 9C
Hope, AR 71801
video collage: https://youtu.be/q7tzPlp7HsU
This weekly email brought to you by:
- Germantown, TN
- Goofy, the beloved animated Disney character
- NOT the dog that bit me
- just so that's clear
- Your local pound
- Frozen Oreos
- The 1960s
Serving A Mission!
What's all this about? As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, it is expected of me that I will serve a two-year mission. (And yeah, the "riding bikes and wearing nametags and knocking on doors" kind of mission.) But this isn't something I'm doing because it's expected of me... I'm doing this because the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ has blessed my life SO much, in SO many ways. I can't think of a greater honor or responsibility than being able to play a part in someone's story of finding and enjoying these blessings, too.
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(After June 20, 2017)
Elder Oliver Wrigley Dahl
Arkansas Little Rock Mission
905 Kierre Dr
North Little Rock AR 72116