We finally made it! This week we reached the magical number of -40 where the Fahrenheit (farengate in Russian) and Celsius meet. To celebrate we boiled water and threw it out our window and unsuspecting victims. I just joking, it actually evaporated right before our eyes and was mind boggling.
My zipper on my boot broke this week. Good thing I am in Russia where they have pemonts (repairs) on every corner, I just took my boot in and they fixed it for way cheap and finished it pretty fast. The same thing happened with my bag except it was my strap that broke and I took it in and they fixed the broken side and re-enforced the other side without more charge. I love this place!
We visit the R family this week. They have kind of a interesting story. So Brother R is a Mexican and was born and raised there and Sister R is Russian and she was born and raised there. They met online and she flew to Mexico and they got married there. They lived there for a couple of years and then they decided to move back to the hometown of Sister R. I bet that situation could only be said of this family in all of history. Anyways they are so cool and were definitely sent back to Russia because God needed them here. They both served missions and want to help us missionaries so bad! They have so many good ideas and it is a miracle they are here. We really need them!
Some of the Russian's here are too tough. It was -30 the other day and we talked to this girl who was only in a super small coat, jeans and normal shoes. No shopka, not even a beanie. No gloves, no boots. We asked her if she was cold and she said no. It is definitely a different breed. It is kinda funny. A lot of Russian's will lie to us and tell us it isn't cold when it is in the high negatives. But then when we want to talk to them on the street they will say it is much too cold to talk right now. They're good people though.
The few days I was without my boots I was basically skiing everywhere. One time I grabbed onto Elder Lyman's shoulders and he ran and I glided the whole time and drifted when he turned corners.
The others Elders are teaching a guy that me and Elder Lyman found when we were companions but then he just kind of dropped off. I think I talked about a little bit last letter. He has been meeting with them everyday now. He has nothing but he clothes on his back. He is so cool. He said before he met the missionaries he was smoking 2 packs of cigarettes a day. Then in one week he was down to 3 cigarettes a day. Then yesterday he told us that he was thinking about it last night and he said he is done smoking completely. It is amazing was Heavenly Father can do with someone when they are in the depths of humility with a willing heart. It also strengthened my testimony of no effort wasted. When me and Elder Lyman taught him, after the second lesson he stopped picking up his phone. We could have considered that time wasted meeting with him. But it wasn't. He showed up at the church last Sunday because he felt something when he was with us. And also because he had nowhere else to turn but we were able to see that even though it didn't pan out the way we wanted it to the first time we started meeting with him. God has a perfect plan for everything and it just wasn't the right time for him. We are praying that this time is.
It was a really good week and made even better by the fact that my Panthers are in the super bowl. It is so amazing. I can only imagine what it would be like if I was home. But I have been thinking. This time out here in this frozen land when I get to serve with these people is much more worth it than being home to watch my Panthers win their first super bowl. I wouldn't change my decision to serve my mission or change my mission to another year or another time even if I could. What is really important is made so much clearer to me out here. There is not so much stuff to blur my vision. I wouldn't go back and change it for anything.
That being said, I am still going watch all the game when I get home but that can wait.
I had a really good week.
I love and miss all of you