Monday, February 24, 2014

No es un Rio

Check out the link to Hannah's mission's blog to the left: you'll be able to see pictures of her as her mission goes on, as well as the other missionaries and some of beautiful Spain! Her address is also to the left, both the mission home and her personal address. She wants letters!

!Queridos Todos!
I don't even know if that makes sense. Dear all! Ugh Spanish is my weakness.
So, I AM IN GRANADA!!!!!!!!!! So blessed. As soon as we arrived in Málaga we asked everyone what their favorite cities were in the mission and everyone's answer was Granada. Granada is magnificient. It is ancient and full of history. The weather is perfect. And whoever told me that the MTC is luxorious compared to missionary apartments was false. Our apartement is crazy nice. I have my own bathroom.
Well I just realized I have nooooo time. I should have started with this email first and then written everyone.
My compainion is Hermana Parrilla. She is from the Canary Islands. She is teaching me everything.
The hardest part of thus week was church: I couldn't understand anything.

Also we went to Motril on friday to help out some elders teaching a lesson and the family fed us so much food I wanted to throw up. And they just kept bringing out more until finally one of the elders asked the mom if she was crazy and then the food stopped. I don't think I'll ever eat pasta again which is saying something for me.
I wish I had time to tell you everything but I don't. I'll try to write it all down and type it up next week.
I love you all!
Hermana Ashby

Thursday, February 20, 2014

AHH! I'm Here!!!

So I have about ten minutes and there is a line of spaniards waiting to use the computer! I leave tomorrow! Super early. We are taking a train. We've had meeting after meeting for the past couple days and they have all been in spanish so I basically have no idea what has happened. The president just gave us a five minute warning. I am nervous and excited and sad and happy and all over the place. I love the mtc and I have learned sooo much here but I can't wait to get to the field and change lives! Write me! I just printed off a picture of Calvin and everyone is fawning over him. I miss you all! Write you next week when I am a real missionary!
Love Hermana Ashby

I have arrived! I am at the mission home!! it is absolutely beautiful here! hills on the coast of the Mediterranean sea and white buildings! I love my mission president and his wife. This is the best! I love you!

PS write me!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

El Pie... Yummmm

¡Hola todos!
So it feels like a lot has happened this week but I cant think of a lot to write about. It's all just kind of a blur.
Last Pday we went to the mall. I bought a a skirt from Primark. I had never heard of Primark but Hermana Costagliola seemed to think it was a big deal, so um woot.
I am terrified of speaking with the spanish missionaries. They are so intimaidating. I tried to talk to them the first couple of days and then I realized that when I initiate conversations they talk to me. And when they talk to me I can't understand them. And then I cry. Well okay I don't ACTUALLY cry but sometimes I worry that I am never going to understand Spanish. sigh. One of the Elders called me a gringo (SP?) the other day. But after everyone laughed he said it was just because my eyes are blue. I don't know.
So of course Saturday I was paired with a spanish sister. Hermana Rabayo. She is actually from Ecuador but has been living in Barcelona for a while and is headed to the Malaga mission. At least I think that's her story because she doesn't actually really speak English. I thought it would be way easier to be with someone who spoke spanish but it wasn't really. We didn't have any real conversations with ANYONE. So sad. This British man told me that being a missionary was the worst possible thing that I could be doing. Haters gonna hate. Lucky Hermana Rabayo had no idea what he was saying so she just smiled and nodded while I took the heat. This is life.
But then after the park we went to go play futbol. Hermanas Read and  Costagliola and I were running late so we were walking by ourselves to field when a man called to us and asked where the metro station was. We tried to tell him but it's kind of hard to explain how to get to it so we offered to just walk with him. He asked us who we were and we told him that we were missionaries and we were standing right next to the temple so we pointed to it and explained a little about our church and he seemed very interested and the the real missionaries serving in Madrid just walked by! We pulled them aside and made them take down this man's information. His name is Pablo. The real missionaries are a lot more smooth then us and they actually speak Spanish. But um after they left we walked him to the metro and he tried to invite us to a party and called me beautiful in German. Apparently I look German or the little spanish I speak sounds like I speak with a german accent or something. All in all it was a very strange experience.
So I only have a few days left in the CCM. I don´t feel ready but I am excited to go to Malaga. An Elder from Malaga tried to give me a lesson in Southern Spain Spanish and it sort of terrified me. They cut off half of their words so I will definitely never be able to understand what anyone says to me. Oh well.
I leave bright and early tuesday morning. I will be able to email again on monday so everyone should email me before that. My pday will always be on Mondays from now on. Mom, You should find and post my mission home address. I love getting letters!
 I love and miss you all!
Hermana Hannah Ashby

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Real Madrid, Thievery, and Contacting

I never know how to start these emails/future blog entries. Or how to title them obviously.
This is week three in the MTC! We are half way through! Time is finally starting to pass quickly. The days individually feel long and so much has happened but I can´t believe it's Thursday again! My cards still work even though my cash was stolen, but for some reason I can´t check the balance in my account so I really have no idea how much is in there. I say a little prayer every time I use it in hopes that theres enough.
So last thursday we visited the Real Madrid Stadium. For those of you who don´t know anything about futbol, it is kind of a big deal. I have been told. It seemed pretty much like an american football stadium with a slightly smailler field. hopefully i will be able to include pictures. Then we went through a museum type thing with the history of futbol in Spain and it gopes back pretty far. We even walked through the locker rooms and shower rooms for the players. Woot. The bummer thing about there being a lot more Elders than sisters is that we do things like visiting sports arenas instead of art museums. But thats okay. It was pretty impressive.

  Saturday was probably the worst park experience yet. Although I did learn a lot. So this week Hermana Read and I paired and we were super excited. Partly because the sisters from Russia barely speak English let alone Spanish and we werent quite ready for that but also because We work awesome together. Like seriously every time I dont know what to say she says something and every time she doesnt know what to say I do. Its the best . So we got on the metro and literally no one would even look at us. This one guy even pretended he was asleep when we approached him byut we just laughed it off and waited for the parque.
Then at the parque we saw this m,am watching us and we just assumed he would want to know what we were doing. Boy were we wrong. We just walked up to him and I introduced us and asked if we could share a message with him (in spanish) and he replied very bluntly that we could not. Lets just say he included a few words that turned the conversation from being rated G straight to R. In English. We just stared at him in shock and finally I said good day and we turned and walked away as fast as possible. Both of us were almost in tears. It was kind of ridiculous. Then we just talked to as many people as possible and nobody would listen. I just felt like I was trying to offer the
 most valuable item in the world to this special park in Madrid and these children of God just scoffed at us trying to give them eternal peace. So frustrating.
Maria was the only one we were able to touch just a little. She had gone to school in cali for a few year so we were able to use spanglish with her. She wanted to know who we were and what we were doing and we just bore our testimonies about missionary work and how we were willing to give up our lives because of the Gospel of Jesus Chirst and Herman Read started crying and Maria even started crying and she thanked us for reminding her about God and his love for his childrenn and she thanked usn for trying to bring more spirituality into Spain. of course she wouldnt givreus her number but she did promis to go on So thats better than nothing.

You Lose Some, You Gain Some

  SO Im going to try to write as much as I can in the next 15 minutes so sorry if it incoherent.
Thursday we went to the Prado Art museum. They wouldn't let me take pictures but it was absolutely amazing. I love art. Classical paintings and sculpture. My favorite room was portraits of royalty. There was this one princess that they had paintings of her at pretty much every age so you could see her grow up from infancy to old age. Way cool.

Missionaries came from the Provo MTC and they are headed to missions in Russia.
Park day was CRAZY. I was with One of the sisters from Russia and one of the sisters from the US going to Russia. I was the only one out of three who could actually communicate with anyone. Everyone thought we were crazy when I tried to explain why I was the only one talking even though I've only studied Spanish for a month. 
We did have a pretty good conversation with this old man named Rafael. The first thing he said to me was that he couldn't believe Christianity because there is no way God and Jesus Christ could be the same person. I got really excited and told him that they aren't! I think he thought that I didn't know what I was saying though and he just kept throwing crazy questions at me and I had answers to them but them he mentions that God doesn't need our prayers just like he doesn't need love or food or air something like that and I told him that God has a body and he just thought I was nuts. I don´t know how to say very much in Spainish. He told me he would teach me yoga and I could talk more about my church. I invited him to church but he just laughed so I didn't think anything would come of it. but then I ran into the other sisters and they told us this man came up to them and them they were late and asked them where church was and if he could go even though he doesn't have children because the pamphlet I gave hime was full of pictures of families. I want him to go so badly.
So yesterday some more missionaries arrived. They are all from Spain or Mexico and are headed to Spain. The sister from Italy is now with Hermana Read and I. I love her so much. I wish she was coming to Malaga so that we didn't have to say goodbye. There are sooo many missionaries now at the MTC. Over 40 at least. But the missionaries from Russia going to Russia left.
I tried to send pictures but it looks like they arent sending again.
I can see why teenage boys need moms. One of the Elders in my district hasn't washed his hair in three weeks. he says it is unnecessary. I say it is unacceptable not to mention super gross.
Thursday is scarf day. We make everyone wear scarves. I distribute my scarves to those without. Everyone looks fabulous. Hopefully there will be a picture coming.

Well looks like I'm almost out of time. I love you!
Hermana Ashby