Already more than a full week in Vlad. I still don't know the names of as many members as I want, but the city is starting to become less of a puzzle. That is not to say that I no longer get lost because that literally happened on Saturday, late at night and we had to call a taxi, but a mental map is starting to be made in the brain.
We had a busy week. Every Monday in Vlad they hold a family night at the Crookston's (a senior couple) apartment. They have a spiritual thought and have us translate. I had translated this time and it went well. There are some phrases that Elder Crookston said that were really hard to translate and so I took a long round about way to convey the idea. Then we had food and played a game. We met a guy there who is a piano teacher and he sounded interested in meeting! Then on Tuesday we have culinary night which is an activity where a companionship teaches how to make some dish and when they finish showing how they pull the pre-made finished product out of the oven. It is basically a cooking show. And at the activity we speak in English. We had 38 attend last week! It was nuts!
The 8th of March was Woman's Day and our branch presidency had the idea of doing hand made cards for all the sisters in our branch. So we helped make those and they ended up looking like the ones I made when i was in 1st grade but it's the thought that counts! Then on Sunday before we gave them out we sang Love At Home for them. It was fun. The branch is awesome here!
One of the returning members that we are working with told us about a discount that was going on for the Aquarium on Russian Island. We got in for half the price. The aquarium was stunning! We also got to watch a dolphin show which not only included dolphins but a walrus doing sit ups. The place was huge and they had a lot of animals. We all went down as a district. We also got to help one of our members remove a cabinet in their house. The cabinet was too big to fit through the door, we kept on jiggling it and trying to force it through with little success. Then they brought us a hatchet and told us to go to work!!! You should have seen it, me and Bacon in an apartment staircase wailing on this huge cabinet with a mini ax. We kept all of our fingers and toes but the cabinet took a pretty bad beating.
The AP's came on splits with us this week and ended up sleeping over for 2 nights. While on the split a crazy generous member took us out to a little coffee shop and bought us so much food. Then he drove us home. We didn't even ask him to do any of these things, he is just that kind.
We were also able to attend an American football practice! You heard me right football in Russia. They are the only team in this city and probably aren't much better than a average high school team but they are the champions of the east of Russia. They kept on asking us for advice and thought it was sick that we played in high school.
It has been a very eventful week!