Jacked Quads and German Dudes – Week 6

Another week, and another weekly email! This week was pretty packed with a ton of biking around and spreading the gospel, so pretty much just like every other week here! But its super fun and I love it!!

This week started off by us going to this place called the “Crystal Cathedral” and it is quite the story! So I live in a 4 man apartment with another companionship of elders, and one of them is Elder Lai a “Běndì” or local missionary. So he told us that there is this super famous super cool place called the Crystal Cathedral that all the Taiwanese people like to visit, and that we HAD to go check it on our P-day a week ago. Well we went and had a member drive us like an hour away to go see this thing, and it was probably the most average building I have ever seen… Literally we were there for 5 minutes and left because it was a building. The craziest part was that there were like 40 Taiwanese people freaking out over it and taking pictures of it. So lame.

6-20-16 Crystal Cath

THE Crystal Cathedral

We went to a part member family up in Anding to teach them and try to get the dad on date for baptism. They fed us dinner and the main course was DUCK BLOOD SOUP YUM! We’ll Wang JieMei gave us missionaries each a massive bowl of soup and we just started eating. About half way through the meal we asked what all this brown stuff in the soup was and her answer was ” I don’t want to tell you” like in an ashamed voice… and we kept pressing for an answer and she said that it was duck blood. Yummm right? Wrong. But you already know I put that bowl of soup down like a champ because I didn’t want to offend them by not eating their food. After dinner we taught them a lesson and FINALLY got the dad on date for baptism. He has been super hard to work with in the past, but you could tell that he was Touched by the Spirit and wanted to get baptized to be with his family forever.

So we had a Less Active member lesson with this dude named Hou Di Xiong, and we had bishop as our “peike” or member present. Bishop straight wrecked this dude and told him how he could be so much more successful if he put the Lord first and came to church instead of working 24/7, and Hou came to church for the first time in 8 years on Sunday! It was sweet to see him changed as well! After the lesson Bishop took us out to dinner at this super good Korean place and the funny thing was that he is not a dude who has a soft side at all, and he usually is super cold toward the missionaries, but he was laughing all dinner and INSISTED on taking a selfie with us to put on his Facebook hahahahaha. SO that’s below as well. I was literally crying tears at that point because it was so funny, but yeah lol.

6-20-16 selfies with bishop

Selfies with Bishop!!

I passed off Lesson 2, so I can know teach the entire first and second lessons in Chinese no problem!

A few days ago we went to this Hot Pot place that has hot pots obviously and all you can eat ice cream for like 120 Kuia, which is kinda a lot for missionaries, but we did it anyway and justified the price by eating like 5 bowls of ice cream each. Ice cream and any dairy product is super expensive here, so you take those opportunities when you get them!

As to my email title! So in Taiwan like I’ve said the country is literally 99.99999% Asian, and you see maybe 1 white dude who isn’t a missionary every week. So a few days ago we saw a random white dude walking down the street, and we were like LETS GO TALK TO HIM. So it’s actually wayyyyyy scarier contacting white dudes than Asian people, I don’t know why, but it’s so hard to contact in English when you’re used to Chinese. But we try to talk to everyone and we went up to him anyways. It turned out that he was this German dude who said with awful English that he can only speak German and Russian, not even Chinese. We we’re like “what??? What are you doing in Taiwan hahahaha” and he said ” The beer is cheap and good!” and then he walked off hahahah so weird!

So we invited another of our LA’s to a baptismal service that another ward was having, and it was super good! Afterwards she offered to take us out to dinner in Sanhua with her nieces and sister-in-law, who aren’t members, so we had to take her up on her offer! Well this is the LA who qings us to CRAZY expensive dinners, and I swear she has to outdo herself every time. So this time we went to this super nice Japanese place and she ordered SO MUCH FOOD FOR US. Like it probably was a 10 course meal… not even kidding! It was all super nice sashimi and stuff like that as well! But it was cool to have a little discussion with the family over this feast! Her sister in law was so funny! She kept on telling me that I was super shuai and that I probably have like 100 girlfriends back home! Which isn’t quite 100% accurate, but I’ll take it anyways, lol. She then told me that literally any Taiwanese girl would marry me, and then it was too much and I had to change the topic hahahaha! Well Sanhua is about an hour and a half bike ride back to our house in Yong Kang, and we checked the clock at the restaurant and it was 8:45…uh oh. We have to be in the door at 9, or 9:30 if were teaching a lesson. So we basically sprinted out the door and hopped on our bikes, and rode home as fast as we could. We literally ran every single red light within reason, and didn’t stop peddling on the highest gear and somehow we made it home in 40 MINUTES!! I swear we set a world record, but nobody is counting so whatever.

6-20-16 tan

Here’s how tan I’ve gotten in the last month! I’m basically black now, and Taiwanese people actually think that i’m not white, lol.

All in all it was a pretty dang fun week, and the amount of miracles we see every day are staggering! I honestly love the mission life. At times it’s super hard, no doubt. Like I miss my family, I miss my friends, and according to that one lady I miss my 100 American girlfriends, but there is no place I’d rather be right now than in Taiwan! I’m super blessed with is opportunity to bless the lives of others as well as learning and growing on my own. I’m also super blessed to be learning Chinese and developing a skill that will bless my life and my future family’s lives for the rest of my life! God truly is our Heavenly Father, and he loves each and every one of us in ways we can’t even comprehend. What a blessing we all have to learn and grow here on Earth.

6-20-16 couch

Random nasty couch we found on the side of the road! Book of Mormon in Chinese is a good read, lemme tell ya!

I love you all and hope you all had an incredible week! Stay safe and serve others! Talk to y’all next week!


Elder Stroud



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