Taking My Wand for a Nametag

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Chapter 43: The 'Porsuit' of Happiness

Title creds go to the grievously misspelled graffiti we saw in Genova today🤦🏼‍♀️

*This week's email contains various reports of law breaking, lil miracles, and alcohol consumption... reader discretion is advised*

Alrighty, so Thursday we met with Francesca again to read the Book of Mormon. Interesting and a bit odd as usual, although the lesson ended a little differently than normal. I've really had to work to stay patient with Francesca. She's always late, she impatiently corrects our Italian, she never keeps commitments, and for some reason she continually asks us to buy her hot chocolate despite the fact that we're poor missionaries! Lol, but Thursday was different. Well, the appointment itself was basically the same: She showed up late. She told us more of the weird stuff going on in her life (definitely sharing waaaaay too much personal info). She corrected our Italian rather rudely like always. She hadn't kept her commitment from last week. And yes, she did try to get us to buy her some freaking hot chocolate😐 however, after all that, she pulled me into a huge hug. She started crying and thanked us for always meeting with her, and said that we've helped her a lot. Definitely a great moment that really humbled me, and reminded me why we're out here doing what we're doing.

Friday, we got a new investigator named Sandy! She's the sister of the less-active Garcia family that has slowly started coming back to church! So we took a train up to Celle and searched until we found her home. We had a fairly short lesson with her since had work that evening. However, meeting Sandy and her three-year-old son Eric was the neatest thing. The minute I met them, I had such an overwhelming feeling of love come over me, and just this sense that they are part of why I'm here in Savona. I mean, I get attached to people pretty quickly, but this was something totally different! Sandy is a little hesitant about religion, but she really wants it for Eric. She want it to first become part of his life, and then to let it be part of her life bit by bit.❤

Also, Celle is absolutely beautiful. Plus, they had floating lanterns up all over centro and I was basically just pretending I was Rapunzel during our walk home🏮

Saturday we awoke to another strike going on outside🙄 whatevs. But we got to meet with Maria and Aurora Carnemolla! Oh how I love these crazy Sicilians hahaha!

Sunday was church come sempre... although there was an unexpected guest... Crazy Dario. Who is Crazy Dario, you might ask? Well, I'd seen stuff about him in our area book... words like DO NOT CONTACT and CRAZY and POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS were used various times... apparently this guy has been baptized into about 5 various LDS branches or wards that we know of... he stood up in the middle of our sacrament meeting and started yelling, and then sat down and apologized, saying he was just talking to himself? And he kept trying to talk to us and the Anziani and we honestly got really creepy vibes. When he was found smoking in the bathroom, that was the final straw for our branch president haha. Pres Dotta has called us sorelle now multiple times this week warning us about Dario, so that's been fun...

Monday came around, and we had an appointment to meet with a less-active Peruvian woman named Maria. I was super stoked, because we haven't been able to meet with her or her family for the past two transfers I've been here! They are absolutely adorable! Fed us an AMAZING Peruvian meal and we had some awesome convos! I seriously love them so much!

And then... they brought out the dolce...

Some chocolatey things wrapped in red and black. Looked harmless enough. I asked what they were, but in all honesty did not understand the response per niente lol. Well first, Maria's sons told us we weren't allowed to eat the black wrapped ones because they had coffee in them. Ok, whatevs. I grabbed one of the red wrapped ones. Immediately as I bit into it, mysterious liquid started gushing everywhere... I was not a fan, to say the least. I mean, I don't really even like it when American chocolates have the random fillings because, well, honestly I feel like chocolate is fine on its own... and I always make a mess of myself and, like, the filling is usually cherry or something... so, like, then I look like a freaking dinosaur or a shark or a vampire who's just had a crazy meal or something... and like, no one wants to be friends with that girl amiright? Wow, long explanation short, I don't like chocolates with mysterious liquid inside. And these chocolates were gushing with it. Worst of all, this stuff was NASTY😷😷😷 Like, the only thing I can compare it to is something along the lines of expired cough syrup... you all know what nasty stuff I'm referring to... 

Well anyways, the rest of the appointment was awesome! However, as we were walking to the train station, Sorella Carter and I were talking about the meal we'd had... and eventually, our conversation went a little something like this:
Sorella Carter: That meal was amazing! Besides the chocolates though.
Me: SERIOUSLY THOUGH! It tasted like freaking cough syrup haha che schifo
Sorella Carter: Sorel... you do realize what was in those, yeah?
Me: ...
Sorella Carter: ...
Me: ...
Sorella Carter: congrats Sorel... you just had liquor shots for your first time🥂

Shut up. Did I really just have alcohol😂😂 haha well that would explain why it tasted so frickin nasty😷 Here's the issue though... we ate soooooo many cuz I didn't wanna make them feel bad... and then they gave us tons to take home... Who'd have thought this sweet little Peruvian family was secretly trying to get us missionaries utterly intoxicated?! 

Am I exaggerating a bit? Why yes, that is very plausible.

I mean, can we take a couple moments to address a few things:
- The fact that that liquor was by far one of the nastiest things I've ever had in my life... And yet people drop so much money on alcohol when they could be buying something else like, I don't know, gelato... or a nice scarf... or a new book...
- The fact that they were extremely quick to take the coffee-filled ones away, but saw no problem in letting us partake of the liquor-filled ones... Because THAT makes sense...
- The fact that, in an effort to be polite, I went out of my way to assure them that I most definitely DID enjoy the cherry liquor... Because heaven forbid I let anyone in on the fact that I did not, in fact, enjoy my lil sample of alcohol🙄🤦🏼‍♀️

Whatever, I'm over it.


That night, we met with Constanza again! That night's lesson with her went better than many have. We're still trying to read the Book of Mormon with her during appointments so that we can establish her testimony and build from there. It can be pretty funny, because she has a lot of good questions... however, she reads in Romanian while we read in Italian, so figuring out how to explain and answer her questions is definitely a challenge! It's so neat though to see how the Spirit truly makes up for the rest. I mean, it's definitely a miracle of sorts to have a Romanian and two Americans sitting together discussing the Gospel of Jesus Christ in Italian! Constanza kept drawing amazing comparisons between the things we were reading in the Book of Mormon, and things she's studied in the Bible. She applies it all to her own life without us even prompting her in any way. It's seriously the coolest thing!💕

Tuesday, we went back to Celle to meet with Sandy, and we had one of the most spirit-filled lessons I've had out here. We really felt beforehand that we needed to take the lessons slowly with her since she's so hesitant. We really want this to be done at her pace, so she understands it all. So we mostly talked about God- His role as a loving father, and the importance of having a relationship with Him. We went in with some set stuff prepared, but isn't it funny how the spirit likes to change things up on you? It turned into an amazing discussion- us teaching principles, her asking questions, and then us finding the answers together. Sorella Carter shared some beautiful spiritual experiences! And idk, I just felt 100% like I wasn't the one teaching- it was the spirit teaching through me. I was saying things and answering questions in Italian without a single struggle. I just immediately knew what to say and how to say it in the language, and it was so humbling. I felt such an overwhelming love for Sandy❤

Aaaand that brings us to today! Pday started off pretty great because we got to see Presidente and Sorella Allen!! Oh how I love them! We had interviews with them in Genova in the morning, and it was seriously the best way to spend the morning! I love Presidente Allen, and every moment I spend with him reminds me that he truly is called of God, and that he has such an immense love for all of us! After we finished interviews, we headed out to centro to do some saldi shopping😍👢👗👜 Sorella Allen even joined us for some of it!

This email is already waaaay too long again, so we'll end things✨ Idk, I guess this week was just humbling and fun! I just felt again and again that I'm not here for me. I'm here for the people- here to serve them and teach them and help them. I'm here for the Sicilian Carnemollas. I'm here for fur-cloaked Francesca. I'm here for Constanza the Seventh Day Adventist. I'm here for our amazing branch. Im here for crazy Dario... ok... maybe not for him... lol... I'm here for Maria... and her liquor-filled chocolates. I'm here for Sandy and Eric.

And with all these lovely people, what can I possibly complain about?💕


1-Porsuit???  2-5 Beautiful Celle  6-Floating lanterns  7-Another Strike

8- Hopping fences like its my day job LOL  9-11 Saldi shopping in Genova with Sorella Allen




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