Monday, July 4, 2016

New companion, friends, and adventures...

Well Elder Andrasko (an • draw • sko) is pretty cool. The name Andrasko comes from Russia. His first name is Charles. Elder Andrasko a really big baseball Padres fan. We are both really intense missionaries so we have been working very hard. I enjoy that a lot.

Behold! An amazing photo of Elder Andrasko, holding a lamb. I am quite amused. 

Elder Andrasko's birthday was Saturday the 2nd, and we celebrated by going to Buffalo Wild Wings.
The missionary that trained Elder Andrasko, Elder Colemere (cole • meer), shares the same birthday so he came along with his companion Elder Stock. There was a bacon cheeseburger on the menu so you all know what I had to eat for lunch. I sampled a few sauces with fries though! That same morning, we played soccer as Elders in the zone. I scored two goals! Brace! One of them was down the center outside of the box, and the other was the final and winning goal of the game: a header to the upper-ninety! I could have had a hat-trick if my diving header was on-target. So close!

When Sunday came, there was a really hysterical testimony given about a missionary in Texas who was talking to a man about the multitude of churches in the world. The man says, "What's your
favorite part of the chicken?" The missionary answers, "The wings." The man guffaws and says, "You see? Churches are like different meats to a chicken. There is something for everyone even though not all agree. There is truth in every religion!" The missionary humbly, but boldly, responds, "Sir. I'm sorry, but we have the whole chicken." Everyone cracked up in the congregation.

I can't keep myself away from the pulpit at this point. It is my third time in the month I have been in
this ward. I'm notorious. All the people whisper to their visiting family as I climb the steps, "Watch this. This missionary..." (I didn't catch the rest of it). When it came time for me to begin speaking, I had to reference it when telling a story of meeting a middle-aged couple in their front yard. We approach them, and immediately the man yells, "We're not interested!" At this point, it is so easy to walk away. But the Spirit knows better. "We can still offer some assistance!" I call to him. It was clear they were trying to center a new window in their garage. Sometimes you just have to force service on other people. If you leave it up to them, you'll end up with nothing. I steadied the window while the man and the woman gazed at the placement of the window. It wasn't long before we began to talk about faith, repentance, baptism, and the Book of Mormon. When we had finished helping and concluded our conversation with them, the man says, "I'm really sorry. I thought you guys were the J-Dubs [referring to Jehovah's Witnesses]. You're the good guys! Thanks for spreading the word. Come back any time!" When I told this story over the pulpit, I said while adjusting my tie, "Well dang! It's about time we get some respect around here!"

There's an awesome less-active member in the ward named Mike Gonzales. We call him 'Gonzo'
(gone • zo). Gonzo sells tacos and the like in a taco truck all across town. We came across him one day and he gave us free enchiladas and a coke! While we were eating, we hear this massive explosion. We start moving toward the sound, curious. A couple of red-necked shirtless hillbillies come around the corner whooping and throwing their hands in the air. One hand full of fireworks, the other with a can of beer and a cigarette between two fingers. It marked the beginning of all the fireworks that were yet to come. They are going off almost all night. I've learned Kansas is really patriotic. For the first short while, I began to duck and cover at the sound of some of the really loud ones. I think they're gunshots. Sometimes I get to a full sprint to hide around a porch. It provides some good laughs for Elder Andrasko.

Check this out... Wait for it.... Wait for it.... 

I know I'm such a child, but this is the funniest thing ever! Caution: Blind Person Driving! Haha! I'm here to admit my first thought was, "Blind person driving? That seems really dangerous. That driver must be really skilled." Guys! How in the world am I not dead in a ditch somewhere, yet be so gullible? There is a God! That's how!

Sister Pedersen and Elder LaMont

This is Sister Pedersen, formerly known as Shelby. Reunited! Isn't this cool? Mission selfie with my kindergarten crush! Oh yeah! We had a good laugh about that!

Ben and Elder LaMont

This awesome kid's name is Ben. Ben is the grandson of Sister Pinkerton, and he is the coolest cat in all of Kansas. This mad-genius played piano for me, beat me at chess, and speaks German! He wanted his hair done, but his mother did not have the time. I offered to spike his hair up with my gel. Dad, François has been reincarnated and I told Ben the story #legacy. He wanted "all of it spiked up, so it looks like my head is on fire." His mother gave the okay, and that's exactly what I did.

This is a picture of my arm with my wristwatch removed. This is only done in the shower and playing soccer. To preserve my dignity, it is my claim that this hellacious farmer tan is a method of checking the progress of bronzing my skin to a desired pigmentation.

Oh the joy of missionary work is real! I am loving every second of my days in Kansas! Thank you, all of you for your undying support and prayers. I am so grateful for you.

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