Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Frohe Ostern!!!

Sent April 25, 2011

So Easter here is an interesting deal. They get Good Friday off of work and, of course, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday. It is currently Easter Monday and it is a ghost town outside. There is NO ONE out and about. We were lucky that the internet shop people are Muslim and do not celebrate the same days. We had a lovely meal with the Henkel family where we ate some real German food. No hasenpfeffer mom but there was a lot of chocolate to eat. In Sacrament meeting we had a few talks and two musical numbers. The first was Bru. Kastle who did an arrangement of hymns. The second was Schw. Henkel and her grand daughter (who is in her 20s) who played a recorder duet. I know everyone is thinking of the lovely recorder performances we've all heard come out of the 1st grade but this was different. They played a Corelli duet for Soprano and Tenor recorders. I felt very Baroque in Sacrament meeting. So a few updates on things here in the lovely city of Heilbronn. Sometime in the near future the performing arts place will be producing Das Rheingold and I REALLY want to go. Elder Sills is way up for it so we'll see if President Condie is of the same persuasion. We went on a lovely train ride out to Mosbach to go to an appointment. There were castles and Medieval towns on the way there as we wound our way around the valley with the Nekar river flowing peacefully below. We also went out to a lovely little town called Hochstberg. There were few buses and certainly none that go on Saturdays so we walked. Ever a lovely feeling. Schwabisch is a new language all its own. It sometimes sounds nothing like German. The members of the branch here are very nice and are very willing to feed us (Mom). I have had a lot of really good food. It's awesome that you had a bunch of people over and were able to be the medium through which the missionaries could teach someone. There are NO investigators out here, so we spend pretty much all our time going out to less actives and dooring. It's always a lovely time. So, I'm glad that the missionaries in California have people to teach. Anyway, I hope everyone is having a lovely time at home and that it's not as hot there as it is here. Have a great week! Tschuss!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Oh, there's how many hours left?

Dated: April 18, 2011

So here I am in Heilbronn. It's a fun little place. It is really different though. There are probably just as many people in this city as were in 1 Bezirk in Wien. That means it's not going to be too hard to talk to pretty much everyone we see. The new address is as follows:

Elder Andrew Neumayer
Kirche Jesu Christi HLT
Werderstr. 164
D-74074, Heilbronn

So, let the email begin. The train ride to Stuttgart and then to Heilbronn was interesting. Elder Foremaster left me on Tuesday because he is training again and he went all the way to Munich to pick up the "golden" and take him to his new area. Meanwhile, I went off to the four-man apartment on the other side of town and lugged my suitcases all the way up several spiral stone staircases for which there are no elevators. We took off in the morning to go to Westbahnhof and all of the missionaries that were leaving Wien rode the same train out. So, Elders Handly and Olsen and Sister McGuire and I all left the beautiful city in search of places unknown. We had a lovely train ride out to Salzburg where it was freezing and we met the Salzburg zone leaders. The other Elders continued on another train ride to Munich and I had a 50 minulet layover until my train came to take me to Stuttgart. After getting on that train and having plenty of trouble with my suitcases and getting them just to stay put, I sat down in a cabin by myself and rode the rest of the 3 hours or so to Munich by myself. Upon arriving in Munich, I saw two Elders getting in the train. It turned out to be an Elder that I knew from the MTC and his trainer taking him to Tubingen. We rode together for maybe an hour or so and then I was once again left alone to ride the rest of the way to Stuttgart. By the way, the rides aren't that boring since the countryside is AMAZING! I arrived in Stuttgart and met my new companion Elder Sills. He is pretty cool. He is so funny and really chill. He was actually born and lived for a while in his life in Cypress, CA. He now hails from Mapleton, UT. He's really open to listening to me rant about opera and we have listened to a lot of good music since we've been together. He's helping me a little with understanding Schwabisch. It's different for sure. I like this place for different reasons from Wien and I think it will be an awesome place to work.

Now that you have my address, John can come tracting with me. I think he'll like it here. i keep telling myself that dad needs to come with me around Germany and Austria. He would just have way too much fun looking at everything. The countryside is awesome and he would love it, but the cities like Wien would have too much to look at even in one building. For my last P-day in Wien, we went to the Staatsoper and got some pictures. We also went to Doblinger Musikhaus which is amazing. And, we went to Schonbrunn. The pictures will speak for themselves. I'll admit that I laughed at the prospect of you and John going on a mission just because it would be exactly as you said it would. You and John would actually be awesome at the Wades are doing Wien. They run the Institute Center. They sit there from 4 to 9everyday and greet the YSAs as they come in and spend time there. You would be great at laying down the rules for the YSAs but also being a fun mom type character. And of course, making lots of good food. John would have the the time of his life sitting at the front desk greeting people as they came in and talking to the people at English class and just taking care of everyone's needs. I can literally see it in my mind. It would be awesome. Anyway, I gotta go and write some other emails. I hope life's great and still puppies and butterflies. Have a good week. Tchusssss!!!!!!!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Muss ich einmal fort von den schonen ort ...

dann nimmt meine Sehnsucht kein end. So, I'm going to have to leave this beautiful city. I've been transferred back to Germany north of Stuttgart to a place called Heilbronn. I don't really know anything about the place, but I know I have to go there for some reason which I will figure out when I get there and start the work. I've had a great time here anyway and we'll be doing everything that we can today to see the things I still want to see. And, who knows? I could come back some day. By the way, Rigoletto was a no go. We went and got situated and were there for may 15 minutes before we realized the should not have gone to a modern production. That was the end of my Volksoper experience. The first few minutes showed that it would have been a good cast, but I won't put up with trash. Oh well though. This week was kinda crazy with a few interesting instances where we didn't quite find the people we went out originally to find, but we found some people with genuine interest on the street on in the bus around that area. We've walked a lot this week but it was all worth it. Not a lot to report this time around but I'm sure I'll have lots to say next week. So, bis spater! Tschuss!

Durfen wir zu oper gehen? Ja, naturlich!

Message from April 4, 2011

So OMG tonight we're going to Rigoletto at the Volksoper!!!! We broke down and bought the 21 euro nose-bleed seats. It will be worth it for sure. We'll also hopefully be going to a sheet music store later today over near Stephansplatz. I can't even express how excited I am to be going to all these places. However I am quickly coming up on my first transfer call and I could be leaving this wonderful city in the near future. Leider, kann i net auf immer hier bleiber. Aber, na jo. So ists ne? Anyway, I'm having a lot of fun here and the people are all great. I especially love the members they're always awesome. We found a possible new investigator this week. His name is Alex Hell (yeah, I know). He was born into a very strict Roman Catholic family and went to Catholic school as a kid and as a result HATES the Catholic church. He went over to Buddhism of all things and then met the sister missionaries on the U-Bahn. He asked for a Book of Mormon and the sisters told us about him. We made an appointment and gave him the book and introduced it. He seemed really open to finding out more about the church. Unfortunately he had to get his wisdom teeth taken out and so he couldn't give us a firm answer on when we could meet next. General Conference was AWESOME!!! Well, the first 4 sessions anyway. We watched the Saturday morning broadcast in the evening on Saturday. Then we watched the Priesthood, Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning sessions on Sunday. That was fun. We got our investigator Anna to come with her boyfriend Mostafa (a member). They came to two session at least. Tanja came alone to one of the sessions but sh loved it. Our Catholic liturgy professor investigator came for the Sunday morning broadcast. He actually really enjoyed it and I think it might have gotten him a little more interested in the church and softened his heart a little. The talks we all so good for the investigators. The church is so TRUE! I'm glad that everyone is willing to send me some letters. We'll need to wait a little to see if I'm staying here though. That is so awesome that Adam got his mission call. He's just too cool for school. I got your package. Thank you!!!!! It was so fun to get so many cool things from home. We ate some of the goldfish at the conference and I share some with the other missionaries. Sisters Covey and Nelson were so excited to see those little fish. Everything else was great. Elder Foremaster was very thankful for his chocolate bunny. This week will be a fun one I think. I hope everything is going well at home. Have a great week! Tschuss!