Monday, July 25, 2016

Week 57



So it was a bit hard for Norwegians to say "Hoopes" so I requested a name tag that when Norwegians read it, they could pronounce it how it should be pronounced. That's why my tag now says Eldste Hops. Very satisfying when people say it right.

I will be getting my driver's license. Here it's a little different and like a billion dollars more expensive and way harder. Normally for Norwegians getting their license costs somewhere around $5,500 dollars, YES dollars!! A small fortune. Fortunately, we just have to take the test. The thing is it is super hard and is an hour long and Europe is way different and way slower than all streets in the states. It should be interesting but I think I should manage. Just have to drive with confidence. No written because I already have a US license.

This last week was good. It was pretty warm a couple of days and then the next two weeks are supposed to rain right on schedule so not too much variation. We weren't able to meet up with our soccer playing investigator because he was busy, but things are going well. We are meeting with another investigator again and he's doing really well, yesterday we ate at his house and it was so good!

Yesterday I hit 13 months which is crazy and on August 6 I will have been in Norway a year. Big days and they are going by way fast.

Good things to come and life is going great.

J

HP Sauce from England it's so good on fish cakes!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Week 56


We decided to walk home from the city

Just making our way home through the forest

So we did a little bit of teaching this week. Had some good lessons, especially with one guy from Ghana. He's been in Norway for 10 years, so basically Norwegian. Way cool guy and we have played with him on his soccer team, we will be meeting up with him again this week.

We have gotten really good at painting and moving for service. Glad I have the experience and so I know how it's supposed to be done. Elder Hadley and I basically always have normal clothes with us so that whenever the opportunity presents itself we can hop in our normal clothes, move boxes and change without going back home. I wish I could say without breaking a sweat, but I have learned I get quite sweaty.

It's been raining all week. And not like rain and stop and then the ground is wet. It's like "okay we are just going to rain for the next 156 years and then after the world runs out of water, then we will stop raining." Ahh, but yanno I can't complain too much because I am in Bergen. But they do have a word in Norwegian that has been very useful the past week. "Gjennomvåt" which means through wet. Yes, a word to describe how wet you are because someone dumped a bucket on you. But like I said, best city ever, can't complain.

Our week was kind of slow but we were still able to teach some good lessons and avoid standing in the rain too much. Unfortunately, my rain jacket is coming apart pretty good so that is a sad thing. So my white shirt is pretty damp most of the time but I will hopefully be able to hold out and soon it will be cold enough to where I can break out my winter coat and then I will never be cold or wet again (until I get banished to the north, of course.)

Zone conference is usually week 4 (except of course last one because we had an area authority visit) so that will be next week. Crazy how it is already like halfway through the transfer. Sometimes I have no idea where the time goes and other times I know exactly where it goes. I think they're going to do it a little different this time so it will only be the zone leaders coming here, so I won't see Daly this transfer for the first time since last October.

I will be taking my driving test here in Bergen before I leave so that should be awesome and interesting. The rumor is that no one passes their test here. Yeah, but most people aren't Californian drivers ;)

Quote of the week from Hadley "You drive like you're from California." Yes, yes I do thank you very much.

Love and have a great week :)



Monday, July 11, 2016

Week 55

Just trying to contact a reindeer

I would say it was a way solid week. It was the first week of the transfer but because Elder Hadley and I are still together things just went together as planned. Kind of nice when you have a rhythm and everything just is smooth sailing (obviously not totally but to us it is.) On a mission, at least, you learn a lot about how other people can choose to do what they want. I'm not saying I'm frustrated when people don't choose what I want them to but I'm saying you have to be ready for anything because at any point in time they can say/do anything. 

It was so weird/cool but I got to see Amanda Koch at church. I totally knew it was her and then when she came up to me I was like "oh, it's totally a Koch!" 

So this last Monday we went on a hike despite the downpour of rain and stuff (that all becomes besides the point after you live here for a while) and we went up and down and that was that. There were some bugs on the hike but we didn't think much of them. Then the next couple of days we were itching like crazy, the sisters too. And we were so puzzled at what it could be, spiders or what. And then we got a call from the sister, "uhh Elder Hoopes, what do you know about bug bites?" Bug bites?  So then we realized we had bites everywhere. Not exaggerating and so we were freaking out and decided to circle all our bites to see if we got more. There were lots of circles. But we didn't get anymore and now we just have a bunch of scabs from scratching all the bug bites off.

A lot has changed since I've been gone. Things are changing back at home, and I don't really know too much how I feel about it. I love that everyone is moving on with their lives. I used to feel like I wasn't changing that much and wouldn't in the two years, just be two years older. But now I have realized, I like who I am here. Even though I'm a little weird (the habits of missionaries) but my personality and the way I view the world is going to be way different than I was. Don't worry, I'm still Hoopes, but I look at things different. I have lived in a foreign country. I do something no normal person does. But I love it. I love it so much. I love it and sometimes I just sit on the light rail and I start smiling and I feel like an idiot and I start talking to some random person next to me and she turns out to be an author of a book that she gives me the author's scoop for. That doesn't happen unless you're on a mission. Maybe it does, but it's not the same. I used to think I would come back and it would just be the same. But I won't. And I'm completely okay with that :)

We have been doing some painting for service. We have helped paint for the family we live under, who are basically the sweetest kindest most caring family ever. So now we are professional painters :)

Well, that's all I got for this week. Have a great week!

Fun running into Amanda at church in Bergen


Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Week 54



This week was pretty good, but nothing too exciting. It started raining, so it has been raining all week and then this week it is supposed to do the same. It's weird because it smells the exact same as when I was in Tromsø.  I walked outside one day and I just had to stop and reminisce. I can't believe it has almost been a year since I have actually been in Norway. Crazy.

Well there was a sad call on Sunday, my new address is....HA not! It's still the same. Yes, that's right I will be staying in Bergen! Wow, what an exciting opportunity. I will be staying with Hadley. I am so excited to stay and hopefully haven't overstayed my welcome. I think it will be an amazing transfer and I am even ready for the rain!

This week I just want to say that personal attention is SO important! I love seeing new people at church because I can just talk to them about being new or not seeing them and talking. People are so interesting and I LOVE TO TALK. It's the best feeling. So I say to you - go up to someone new at your functions and just talk to them. A lot of times people just need someone to listen. I recently talked to someone on the city train and at the end of the conversation she was just like "it was so nice to talk to you, I like having conversations with people - it's very pleasant."  (obviously awful english translation but you get the idea.) SO TALK TO PEOPLE!

Have a great week!
J

So glad my dad taught me how to move