Well, I'm here! After about 24 hours of travelling and losing a day of my life, I am good. Since we flew over the International Date Line, I officially did not live on Tuesday November 17, 2015. Ah!
The travel was great, well, not so great. The planes were freezing and the seats were uncomfortable, and the worst part of it was that on the back of every seat, there was a little TV screen where people could watch movies and TV shows. I saw that Inside Out, Ant Man, Mad Max, and random Chinese movies were playing. It was hard not to watch them, since missionaries don't watch movies. So I just slept, or tried to sleep, at least. That 15 and a half hour plane ride from LAX to Hong Kong was brutal though. It made me question if I really did want to travel a lot in the future. I have 17 months to decide, we'll see how I feel about flying again after I get home. Haha!
This is outside the airport at Hong Kong. The sun was just coming over the mountains, it was so beautiful! I got to see Elder Meachum off, waving goodbye to him as he got on the plane.
I flew to Indonesia alone and once I got off the plane, BAM wave of heat and humidity! It was awesome! I was so glad to get out of the cold and into the HEAT! PANAS! Since the seasons are changing from the dry season to the rainy season, it's not too hot right now, yeah, I'm sweating all the time, but it's not so hot that I'm uncomfortable. It's very humid, but I like it.
My mission president is President Donald. He's from Australia, and one of the first things he said to me was that I have a weird accent. :) I love Australian accents though, so it's ok. I was told that I would be staying in Jakarta or a week and then go to YOGYA (Jogja) Yaayy! That is where all the cool hindu and Buddhist temples are and where the king lives. I'm super excited to go there. I'm staying in Jakarta until tomorrow so that I can get my Kitas, it's like an Indonsian passport/visa thing. My companion/Sister Training Leader is Sister Ingersoll. She's coming home to Boise in just a few weeks. She's a good missionary and has taught me a lot. We've gone to investigator's and less-active member's homes to teach lessons and we've gone bus contacting.
This is me and Sister Ingersoll on the back of a Bemo. That was fun!
There are so many new sights, new smells (ah, the great smell by the mission home! (not good)), new people, and new things to hear. I can't understand anything anyone is saying. It's like, did I even go to the MTC, did I really learn this language? I can say the things that I want to say, I just can't understand a word anyone says. It's crazy. Sister Ingersoll said that she didn't start to really understand Indonesian until she was here for 6 months. Well.... ok. I just take a day at a time, everyday hopefully understanding a little bit more. I hope I can understand at some point.
They have Christmas lights here! Woop! It made my day! Outside of Jakarta, they don't really do Christmas, so there probably won't be any lights in Jogja.
This was Sunday dinner. After freezer-burnt tater tots, nasty cereal, and a burnt bag of popcorn, this is what we came up with. There wasn't a lot of food to work with, so this was the best route to go!
So in the MTC, we teach "investigators", which is really just our teachers personifying investigator they taught on their mission, and we practicing teaching them. The woman on the left in the green was one of these investigators. Her name is Lely, it was so cool to meet her!
Well, it's been a great week, but I can't wait to go to Jogja. My companions will be Sister Antonio and Sister Nainggolain. The first is from the Phillipines and the second is from Indonesia. It's going to be so cool!
Sampai jumpa lagi,
HOLLEY STRINGHAM: Salt Lake City, born and raised; returned missionary from the Indonesia Jakarta Mission.; a simple folk aimed on changing the world