Hahaha ohhh Noah, sounds like the Sound of Music was quite a fun experience for you! That's cool you guys had a little Pioneer Day remembrance. I was actually talking to some members a few days ago about Pioneer Day, because they were wondering if it was a big holiday over in the USA. I told them not really, only in Utah! haha. And Abbey, what a pro you are! I could never win anything at those carnival games... guess you are more skilled than your big bro!
So, in my district, the Kakinada district, there are two sets of Elders. Us, and one other pair. We split Kakinada into East and West territories, and me and Elder Watts cover West side. In our zone there are like... hmmm... 18 elders? Something like that. It is called the Rajahumundry Zone. And no, we have no sister missionaries in our zone. That's because the Rajahumundry area is pretty un-westernized, and they like to keep the sister missionaries in more westernized cities (for protection I guess). So, they stay in places like Bangalore and Hyderabad.
For Preperation Day, here's what typically happens. We wake up, get ready for the day, do our studies for the day, clean the apartment for an hour, go do emailing (unless there is a power cut, I'll explain that in a minute), shop for our food at Spencer's (kind of like a small Walmart), go back and eat lunch, and then hang out for 2 hours at the apartment. Then we go back out at 6, and we will usually teach 2-3 lessons before we go back home for the night. Haha I think it's crazy that those 2 hours at the apartment are really and truly the only free hours we have the entire week. We literally work 24/7, minus 2 hours. Wow! Quite a change from back home!
So ya, power cuts! No, not power outages, just power cuts, meaning the power company stops supplying electricity for a certain period of time. Why? Because they can't make enough electricity for everyone to use as much a they want. Which is mind blowing, because people here use WAY WAY WAY less electricity than people in America. The power cuts are longer and more frequent on warmer days, because than people are cranking their air conditioning up. Fortunately, this past week has been pretty cool, so there has been almost no power cuts. But on warmer days there could easily be 2-5 power cuts in a day, ranging from 1-2 hours each. haha so appreciate your cushy American life stlye with electricity 100% of the time! :)
Okay, I gotta tell you guys about one investigator named Trishal. He is a true gift from God to us! He randomly went to one church meeting in a different city a month ago, and really enjoyed it. So then the missionaries from the other city told us about him (because he lives in Kakinada, he was just visiting the other city), and we made an appointment to teach him. On the very first lesson we had with him, as were teaching the Great Apostasy, he randomly asked, "So, I actually have one question. Can I baptized?" We're like, "Uhhh... YA YOU CAN!" Apparently he has been trying to baptized into a Christian church for the past 6 months, but all the churches had rules that for one reason or another he couldn't keep (e.g. he needed to worship in their church for 1 hour every single day, and he just didn't have time to do that). He also came to church this Sunday and really liked it, and hopefully he will be baptized in August! Hooray!
Oh, and in case you were wondering, I can understand people pretty well now! Woo woo! Haha however, understanding their accent is only one barrier in communication. There is also the fact that they might only know 100 words of English, so even if you do understand them, you might not be able talk to them about very much... So along with your electricity, appreciate the fact that you are surrounded by people that understand you when you speak! It really is a big blessing!
Well, I love being a missionary! I've already grown so much, and hopefully made a difference in many people's lives. I hope you guys have a great week, because I know I will!