So, do you want to hear the greatest introduction that I have ever been given? We had our Mission Tour this week where the Asia Area President came to Ulaanbaatar for a couple days and we had a Zone conference where all of the missionaries in the city were able to learn from the Mission President and his wife as well as the Asia Area and his wife, but before all of the fun began, he stood at the door and shook all of our hands as we walked in. When it was mine and my companion's turn, Sister Harper, the mission president's wife, told them that we were the happiest companionship in the mission. I really like my companion and I think that it is really cool that it is also noticed by those around us.
Otherwise, this has been a very long week and the weather is getting colder. It is normally around 60 F right now and although it sounds nice, it is a little chilly when you spend all day in it. So, it is full-time jacket wearing season and the wind that is coming from Russia really does make a difference because it is so much colder in the shade than the sun. So mid-day is the best time, but I still love Mongolia and know that there is no such thing as bad weather, just being poorly dressed. So as I get my winter stuff and start to layer on the clothing, it will be good. As for right now, I will enjoy the pretty nice weather and take it for what it is.
Some really great things that happened last week was that on Monday we were able to finally meet with our school about the semester that just started and had an amazing meeting. It was nice to sit at a table and hear the expectations and changes that happened at the school at the start of this school year and to know that we will begin working with the students again. It is kind of a bummer that they took away half of the students that we worked with, we used to teach 12 hours a week working with 6 different age groups, and now we teach for 8 hours a week with only 2 different age groups. I think that I will miss all of the little gobbs, but the two class levels are also my favorite students, so I know that it is going to be a great school year. We are going to hit the ground running this year and make it the best English classes that we possibly can. On Friday, my companion and I just went to our school to do a quick visit and it was WONDERFUL to be back. It felt so familiar, I cannot wait for Wednesday when we actually go to teach. I will keep you posted.
(All of these changes are actually beneficial in the fact that it leaves a little more time to meet with investigators, members, and less active members; so this is good in the eyes of my mission.)
On Tuesday, though, I know that the Lord is in the details of our lives. My companion and I had the opportunity to spend the night at an apartment near the mission home (meaning we wouldn't have to take a 40 minute bus ride in the morning) in anticipation of the mission conference and we were hungry, so were going out to the local market to grab a quick snack. As we were outside, we saw one of the LA's in our ward and were able to talk with her trying to help, but that shouldn't have happened. We work on the other side of town, so the likelihood of us having met at that exact moment is like at a 1%, but the Lord knows what He is doing. He gave us to opportunity to be available to help her and she was given the option to choose to allow us to help her or not. Afterwards, I was astounded by the fact that we ran into her.
Later on in the evening, we were directed to find a house of an LA that we have tried to meet with before, but her apartment was IMPOSSIBLE to find. She lives in apartment building 90-something, but all of the buildings surrounding her building were in the low 30's. Logically thinking, an apartment building in the 90's should be nowhere near the 30's, but as we were walking, I remember just thinking about checking one building in the distance after another until we miraculously found it. She was looking out the window the whole time and even she was astounded that we found her house because we went the most back-routed way possible. I know taht the Lord helped, I have a firm testimony that He knows who we MUST meet with and will help us get there.
It has been a great week (we had one really strong LA RM come to church on Sunday!), and I know that I am giving my all to this work. I love what I am doing.
With all my heart,
Sister Jessica Olsen
PS- I forgot my card reader today, so no pictures (but I held a vulture, owl, and petted a camel today!). Mongolia is awesome
This is from today!!! These camels were softer!!
These are from the conference on Wednesday
At the Giant Chingis Statue