Sunday, November 30, 2014

Our first days in the Adriatic North Mission

We arrived in Zagreb, Croatia on November 15 where we were greeted by President and Sister Grant.  We were then loaded into a van, and after a three hour drive, we arrived in Belgrade, Serbia for a District Conference.  After meeting Saturday and Sunday, we drove back to Zagreb where we spent the night at the mission home.  So, if we look a little tired, it's because we have been awake for about 36 hours.

After a night in the mission home, we loaded up again and off to the airport we went for our flight to Dubrovnik, Croatia.  The Westwoods met us, stuffed our luggage in the humanitarian station wagon (with the back full and two carry-on bags, plus our handbags between us).  We drove along the beautiful Adriatic Sea coast, then turned up, up, up, up over the mountains and down, down, down to Podgorica.

Podgorica is a beautiful city with lots of trees - can't wait to see it in the Spring.  This is outside our temporary apartment window.

We have now been here and have moved into our permanent home away from home.  We are getting a little more acquainted with the city and haven't got too lost for a few days.  We are both so turned around here that we have really had a struggle with directions.  No where are there street signs or direction markers.  This bridge, called Millennium Most (most means bridge) is over the Moraca River and is a good landmark for us.  This picture was taken on Saturday during a huge rain storm (which is quite common in the winter).  Today, walking to church, the water was muddy, muddy and up to the bottom of the white structure at the bottom of the bridge.

This is one of several parks in the middle of the city.  We really enjoy walking almost everywhere we go.  The sidewalks are old and dangerous, but much safer than driving in the horrible traffic.  Honking taxi cab drivers and lead-footed speeders keep you on the edge of your seat when driving, or very cautious when walking across the street.

   .These giant transformers made from pieces of junk cars and trucks are here and there around the city.  

The pizza is yummy here!  The Goodfella's is the best - a little pricier - 1.5 euros for one slice (1/4 an 18").  The MiMi stands are everywhere.  There pizza is 1 euros for the same slice.  They fold it in half and stick it in a cardboard sleeve.  People walk around eating it all hours of the day. 

This is a picture of the "walking street".  It goes for two block with tiny shops on both sides of the street.  It's great - you don't have to worry about cars.

This beautiful building is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Podgorica.  It's very lovely on the inside, despite the big hole in the front window (which we're trying to get replaced).   We have met here twice now - the four Elders, Elder and Sister Taylor, our member Srgon (last week we had one inactive member and one investigator attend plus the Westwoods - quite the crowd!)

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Our Great MTC District!

This is the wonderful district that we worked with during our stress week.  From the left:  Elder & Sister Johnson going to Hong Kong as welfare regional coordinators, Elder & Sister Birch going to Calgary, Canada as office specialists, Sister Foster & Sister Grover going to Salt Lake City as Family History Specialist, and the silly old couple on the end going to Montenegro in the Adriatic North Mission.  What a special group of people!

Missionaries at Last!

Well, after four long months, we are finally officially missionaries - we have finished our first week at the MTC!  What a stretch-ourselves-out-of-our-comfort-zone week, but also, what a very,very spiritual and uplifting week.  We are almost ready to fly off to Montenegro - just four more days of training on our responsibilities.