I was on an aisle seat for the long flight so I didn't see outside very much, but I sent a picture of the flight route. We actually went over Alaska and Russia, so that was kind of weird. It was pretty boring, I just slept for most of it.
The language stinks, almost as much as the food. People talk way too fast, and I can never think of anything fast enough to reply if I could even understand them. I've eaten some crazy stuff, I've already tried octopus, and I'm not really sure what most of the other stuff is. It's just usually some kind of vegetable/noodle/rice/sometimes meat and it's all super spicy.
It's Busan or Pusan, in Korean you say it with an in between a 'b' and a 'p' sound, so it's written both ways. Busan is huge compared to anywhere in Utah, so many people, all packed into a little area. Look on google maps, there are plenty of wooded mountains (more like hills), since it rains so much there are a ton of trees anywhere that there aren't houses. Which isn't very much, but it's there.
Yes, I am in the Changwon stake. My ward is Tongyeong, we have an average of 20 to 30 members who come each week. My companion is Elder Suter. [He] has been out for 18 months, so he does almost all of the talking. I usually feel pretty useless, but the bishop was really excited to hear that I play piano, so I'll probably get to do that in sacrament meeting quite a bit. Sunday was pretty fun, my companion and I passed the sacrament, and then gave a short introduction talk. Everyone was really impressed with my Korean, but whenever they complimented me on it I didn't understand, so that was pretty embarrassing.
I've taught one lesson, and that was the first day I was here. It was to a 17 year old boy who wants to be baptized but his parents won't let him.
I've been super tired during the day from jetlag, hopefully it won't take me too long to get over it.
I haven't really noticed any of the trees changing colors, it's still pretty hot here though, 80s maybe.
We exercise every day except for Sunday, and we get a ton of walking in, Tongyeong is a pretty big area. It's considered "countryside" for Korea, but you'll see some pics, it's bigger than any city in Utah.
For P day today we went to a restaurant for lunch, I had Kimbop, it's like sushi but no raw fish. One was vegetables and the other one was beef. Then we went to this "wall painting village," and got some pretty sweet pictures there. At the top of the hill that this village was built on was a Buddhist temple with some people performing for money, it was pretty cool. Korean rock concert!
It's been pretty fun here, we teach an English class on Thursday and Saturday nights, and that is super fun. It's the only time that I don't feel stupid around the Koreans, so that is pretty nice :) It is really hard to find anyone in this area, there hasn't been a baptism for a year and a half, and the elders who were here before us apparently didn't work very hard, so it gave a bad impression to the members. But don't worry, my companion and I are here to change that :)
Other than that, not much has been going on. If you're still awake, any questions?
|Flight path to South Korea|
|Warm welcome at the airport|
|Elder Hines with President & Sister Barrow|
|Elder Suter and Elder Hines|
|Scenes from the bus ride from the mission home to Tonyeong|
|Home Sweet Home|
|Elders Hines, Trentman, Hamilton (?) and Suter|