So at the slc airport, I met a few guys who were going to my same mission. We boarded the plane together and sadly I got a middle seat in between two smelly people. It was a long plane ride! I was really tired though, so I was able to sleep for most of the flight. On the second flight, to Manchester, I got an aisle seat! Next by me was a 15 year old guy named George from Liverpool and we talked the entire flight! He didn't understand why I would leave everything for 2 years and come to England to spread the gospel. He had never really heard of the church so I gave him the run down, and he was kind of interested! We finally got to the MTC that morning. They found out that I play the piano, so they have me play all the time in every meeting. (I love to sing and dance in the shower ...sincerely Elder Phelps ;) ) I'm really the only one who can play! President Preston loves that I play though so that's good. Then they put us into Districts, and I got called as District Leader! Since there are only 60 people here, there are only about 10 Elders in my district. The guys are awesome though. We've got the world covered though! In my district is Elder Marzahn from Germany, Elder Labahn from Germany, Elder Cloward from Heber City, Elder Baines from Sheffield England, Elder Aranda from the Phillipines, Elder Phelps from Enterprise, Elder Rix from Australia, Elder Pasten from Chile, me, and my companion, Elder Donaldson from St. George. He's the smartest person I've ever met! Our district knows how to have fun but we know how to get down to business. The first couple days were really hard and long because of jet lag and new people, but I've adjusted well to this new life. I love my district and the people in it. I always work hard and stay on task, but the kids in my district can get a little rowdy at times. We're still 18 year old boys. Labahn is usually the crazy one, but he's hilarious! Donaldson really wants to come home with an accent so he has resorted to speaking in an accent...all the time. It's kind of annoying! Labahn and Marzahn have taught me a lot of German, so I know how to say a lot of stuff to them! It's fun. An Elder from South Africa taught me how to say some stuff in Afrikaans too! I can now say "I am the cheese" in 5 different languages!!! People are here from all over the world and it's fun to talk to them about it. They like that I've been here before and that I understand how things are outside of America.
In my room, it's me, Donaldson, Elder Elwell from Clearfield, Elder Cousins from Utah, Elder Spencer from Oregon, and Elder Mikulenka from Czech Republic. Those four are going to the Alpine German speaking mission, so that's cool! Every night we have pushup contests, but Mikulenka always wins. He's a beast! The beds are kind of hard but I'm tired enough that I always sleep good. In fact, on the first day I was so tired that I dozed off at the end of one of our classes, but fortunately Donaldson woke me up just in time to play Praise to the Man. I played it perfectly even though i was half asleep. In the morning, all of our alarms are different tones though, so it's kind of nice to wake up in the morning and listen to them all at once....It's quite peaceful. Then we race to the showers because it gets packed in there! We all have a good time though and I figured out how to do laundry and iron my shirts.
We've all been working hard! Our teacher is Brother Wilford from south Africa and he is really good at acting as an investigator. The first simulated lesson I froze, but Donaldson spoke really well. He definitely has a gift and I want it too! I'v'e gotten much better from that point though.
We get one hour of exercise every day, so I either go to the gym or I play soccer. I love playing soccer though because everybody is so good here! All the europeans are way better than the Americans but it's still fun to play. I've had some pretty awesome goals, usually not on purpose. I want to play a game today Americans vs. Europeans.
I just went to the store and bought some stuff. It was nice to get out of the MTC because it feels just like Utah with all the Mormons walking around. Today we get to go the the Preston temple and I'm so excited!
The food here is not bad at all. I was expecting it to be bad, but it's actually pretty good! They've got all sorts of stuff and I drink a lot of milk. Snack time is always at 9 pm and it's my favorite time of the day. Donaldson likes to bug me and stalls at the district so that we don't get much snack time. I thought I would be homesick, but I'm not at all! Some of the kids in my district are though, but I help them out and it's all good. Anyways, I'm loving it out here and I've adjusted really well to the new life. It's cool that my life is completely devoted to the gospel, I've learned a lot. It's fun here but I'm excited to get out into the field. I get to go to Manchester tomorrow and practice teaching real people! I'm super excited for that. But I'll email you guys not this next monday but probably the next since I leave early next wednesday morning.
|With my MTC companion, Elder Donaldson|
|In class with Elder Labahn and Elder Brown|
|My district in the MTC|
|The Preston, England Temple|
|The grounds of the MTC|