Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Leaving Badalona

¡¡¡Hola familia!!!

Well, this email is a little different from usual, because I'm
currently sitting in the Barcelona Train station! It's not for what
you think, though, exactly. We're here waiting for Hermana Romero's
new companion, a mini-missionary from the Palma de Mallorca, and then
we'll head to the office to snag some new missionaries for the night!
(A couple of side notes. Mini-missionaries are members that offer to
spend 6 weeks with us, following all the rules and hours of full-time
missionaries, and this transfer we have SIXTEEN of them in our
mission! We just met her, Hermana Orjuela, and she's SUPER CUTE!!!
She's gonna be great. :) Then this transfer we've received 10 new
hermanas and 1 elder, so Hermanas Romero, Orjuela and I will be taking
2 of them out for the first time in the Field. This is so funny to me,
because Hermana Romero took ME out for the first time when I first got
here! So I've gotta be super nice to this cute newbie, just in case
we're companions someday. ;)

All that being said, if it makes any sense at all......


*dramatic sports movie monologue soundtrack starts*


After 6 and a half months, (ok... Really five and a half), three
companions, two of which ended up "dead", countless embarrassing
mishaps while learning Spanish, freezing winds to sweltering heat,
quite a few holidays, and 4 transfers.....



*music intensifies*



I'm leaving Badalona.


*single tear drops*



*slowclap starts*



Ok, but really though, I'm really really sad to have to leave here.
It's my home! My nest! My "birthplace"! Shoot.





LEAVING BADALONA. I'm still trying to let it sink in.


BUT Hermana Larson, you may ask, if you're leaving Badalona, why are
you still there? And where might you be heading?

Excellent questions. But first, let me explain about something I
somehow totally forgot to explain a little while ago. Once upon a
time, every transfer, we have an "intercambio"(I don't know what the
word is in English) where we switch companions or areas for a day to
learn and grow and change things up a bit. Up until this last
transfer, the intercambios I had been on had always been in our own
cute little Badalona. THEN one day things changed, and I took a train
all by myself (prearranged, I'll grant you, but terrifying
nonetheless) all the way to Vic, which is in the north maybe an hour
or so from the French boarder. I had an AMAZING intercambio with
Hermana LarsEn, whom I love, in this cute little Catalan town over in
the hills! Where it's green! And it's not quite so grungy! I loved it.
It was the first time that I'd been outside the city my WHOLE MISSION
SO FAR! I've only ever been in Madrid, Hospitalet, Barcelona, and
Badalona, so getting to see a REAL Spain-ified city was a game
changer. I realized that I get to be in the best mission in the whole
world, because it's like being in the whole world all at once! It's a
wonderful mesh of cultures and languages and people in the cities, and
then you get to see the cute little towns and culture that we have
here in Catalunia. It was just a really great experience, and I
thought to myself, you know what? I would love to serve in a pueblo
like this someday.


Well.


Someone must've heard that thought.


I'm heading to the FURTHEST POINT SOUTH of the whole mission, to a
cute little town called Gandía!!!!!! Way down in Valencia!!!!! 



I've heard exactly 5 things from anyone who I've asked about it.

1. You're going to love it there
2. You're going to melt there
3. You're going to eat more paella than you've ever had your whole life
4. The beach there is so pretty
5. You're going to come back super brown. (Then they see that I'm
white, and they change their minds.) You're going to come back super
Red.


AND to top it all off, I'm moving from a 4-person apartment, to a 2
person apartment, to be with my new trainee, Hermana Stahl! I don't
know her yet, but I've heard so many great things about her! She's
from Switzerland, she speaks like 5 languages, and she loves to cook!
So we're going to get along very nicely. :) Her first trainer, Hermana
Sebastiá, is finishing her mission today, so I'm going to finish her
training! We have a very similar situation, it would seem. ;) I'm
SUPER nervous, because I feel like Hermana Birch was finishing my
training just yesterday, and I'm still a baby! But I have a feeling
we're going to get along really really well, and I can't wait to meet
her. :) For that reason, I'm staying here in Badalona for an extra day
so that I can attend the trainers meeting tomorrow at the Mission
Office.

So! It's been a big week, trying to say goodbye to everyone here and
prep to move out of my first piso, but I'm so excited for this new
transfer! I gotta head out now, but I love you all!!! I know the Lord
is there, that he hears and answers prayers, and that He loves us. I
know that we are here to become more like Him. I love my mission, I
love Badalona, I just know I'm gonna love Gandía, and I love YOU! :)

Have the best week ever!!
Love,

Hermana Larson

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