Monday, March 30, 2015

March 23, 2015

Hey everyone,
 It was nice to hear from you. I got your videos and pictures.
Jena from our hike
So this week was pretty interesting. We went on a hike for p-day with Farooq and a girl named Leila from our English class. It was really fun and we got a good view of Jena. I have pictures don’t worry. We also climbed some trees and tried teaching Farooq how to talk to girls. He is from Pakistan and he said in Pakistan you can’t look into girls eyes for more than 5 seconds before they slapped you and you weren’t allowed to talk to them until after marriage. It’s so weird the different cultures in the world.  Anyways, he has been in Jena for two years and said he has been trying to get a girl friend for two years. His normal pick up line was just "Are you single?"  We taught him how to have a normal conversation with girls, so he kept trying out our advice on Leila. Haha it was funny.
Dinner at the church
Tuesday we had English class and a girl Nina showed up which made us happy.  Farooq started talking to her and saying what Elder Anderson and I had taught him to say to girls, word for word.  It was hilarious.
Wednesday we made dinner for two people in our ward. They are just friends but it was cool because we watched the restoration with Farooq afterwards and we talked for another hour and I think Farooq really liked it.
Gustavo Grilling Bratwurst
Then on Thursday we went to the park with Farooq and Gustavo and we played a little soccer and badminton. Gustavo rolled up with a big hand full of sticks and dropped them on the grass and started making a fire for roasting bratwursts. haha. They were really good but soon after the cops rolled up so Elder Anderson and I stood off to the side pretending to play soccer and the cops came and told Gustavo he couldn’t have a fire in the middle of the park. He told us after that every time he starts a fire the cops show up. haha. Farooq invited a girl to English class and she said she would show up, so hopefully she does.

 Saturday we went and did a service project for six hours in a giant old warehouse. This guy had us move stuff around sweep, mop and then move more stuff around. I don’t know why we were mopping because the floor was really dirty still, but it was good.
Sunday I had to give a talk in German. I gave it on Family History and everyone said I did well and they could understand me but I don’t know about that. I can send you it if you want, as long as dad doesn’t make fun of my hand writing. Funny story about Sunday, Leila was moving back to Dortmund so we told her we would take her bags to the train station for her.  She said her train left at 6:30 am in the morning, (when we usually get up) so we woke up at 5:30 am to go help her. We got her bags and brought them to the train station for her. The train rolled up we said goodbye, helped her put the bags in the train and then not 10 seconds after we got in the train the door started to shut and I hit the door open button but nothing happened. So we went on a 20 min train ride to Weimar. haha. When we got there we helped put the bags on her next train because she was switching trains and then went and visited the Weimar Elders at 7 am in the morning. They were really confused.  We got back around 8:20 am to Jena and went to church at 10 am.

We keep trying to meet with Pricilla but she hasn’t been answering. I looked at you pictures on drop box and the funny thing about Abby driving my car is she said “I wish I could raise the seat,” and you totally can. There are two levers on the driver’s seat one drops it back and one raises the seat.  
Well all has been going good this week just trying to teach Farooq and find him a girl friend. haha. This week has been full of adventures. Elder Anderson leaves in 17 days. Well Love you all.  I will put pictures and a movie in drop box!
Love Devin

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

March 15, 2015

Hey everyone,
Hey I am glad you got back from Hawaii okay!  That stinks the weather was bad.  This week has been pretty good.   Last week for P-day we played soccer and Gustavo showed up and he was schooling us all.  It must have been his Colombian genes.  The food we get most often is usually Wiener schnitzel. It is just how you described but its pork not veal.  Everyone here in Germany seems to like hatchbacks vehicles. I don’t know why.  I have been practicing my German still but it’s a tough language. You have to remember der, die or das for almost every word.
I have emailed Joe Gray a few times and he says the language is coming along okay. He sent me a picture of Brazil and it looked crazy. He was actually really close to where Sadie was when she was there, and when I say really close I mean Argentina touched Sao Paulo. And Joe is in Sao Paulo south so I think they were close.
Balloon over Jena
We haven’t been knocking too many doors lately. We have stuff going on almost every day and then we have meetings with people. We have a washer and dryer in our place. I forgot to take a picture of our bathroom for you the washer is right in front of the toilet so it is hard to sit on the toilet without hitting your knees on the washer. We haven’t had any more service opportunities yet. I guess you have to register to something and our ward mission leader is the one on that. It was a lot easier to take pictures with my phone, but don’t worry I will try my hardest to take some more this week.
Hey Abby that’s awesome you got to feed a turtle. I am jealous. We eat frozen lasagna a lot and spaghetti. I have a few more stories I will share at the end of the email.
So, the picture of the guy on Skype I think I told you about earlier. I Skyped him in the MTC and he came down and bought me and Elder Anderson lunch. He is a interesting dude and he has met almost all the missionaries here. 
So last Monday we played soccer with Gustavo and for a 47 year old man. He was pretty quick and making us all look like fools. Later in the week he was teaching us German and he told us we could use his book to learn. Haha He is the craziest guy.
Later in the week we met with a guy named Farooq who is a Pakistani from our English class. We gave him a lesson and then played Uno for a bit. He was getting super mad at me for giving him draw four cards. We also got him to come to church. He said he liked it and when we were in the class after church we were introducing ourselves and he said hi my name is Farooq and I am from Pakistan and I am studying at the university and I am single. And then The girl next to him was introducing herself and he chimed in and said "Are you single?" It was hilarious and the best part was she had her boyfriend sitting next to her and she never said No. haha. Farooq is an awesome guy.
We also went to the older couple’s house with Farooq for dinner on Sunday evening. That was good. We had homemade pizza and banana splits after.
Well I have no time left so I will write next week!


Saturday, March 14, 2015

March 9th 2015

Hey Guys!

How is everyone?  Germany has been good. We got some bikes so we can get around and get exercise. It’s been really fun. I don’t know how I am going to do that come summer because it is going to be a million degrees! I think we have zone conference every transfer which is about every six weeks. Last zone conference was here and I think the next is in Erfurt which is a little west of here. I hear we are going to Erfurt for conference. The mission isn’t too bad here. It’s all about attitude to get people interested. We learned that in the MTC. Most challenging is getting people to church or to other activities. They all say their coming and then they don’t show up. Hannah has been busy and Pricilla and Farooq are out of town.  We haven’t got the sport contacting going yet. We haven’t had much time to talk to the buro office. 

Hochhaus mean high house, not high as in drugs but high as in tall. haha. There is lots of good food here, I really like schnitzel. (A very thin, breaded and deep fried schnitzel made from veal). I haven’t had any really gross food here, but I still don’t like vegetables. We went to an American sports bar the other day with Gustavo and that was the closest we got to a real American meal. I had ribs.
Me writing you a letter from the library.

Most of the people here are great. Some people are friendly until they figure out we are missionaries others are friendly most the time and some don’t talk to us at all. They just say kein interessant and keep walking. I like how different it is here from America but at the same time I miss America.

 The only wildlife I have seen here are ducks. They are in all the rivers. It’s getting a little warmer here and yes my German is getting better. I can understand some conversations. Not every word but I can catch key words and understand what is going on. I don’t know if Germany has daylight savings here. If they do I haven’t heard anything about it. They have some pretty strange art. There is giant heaps of trash in this square and they say it is art.

Well I may have forgotten my camera at home because we are going to play soccer after this but I promise I will take some pictures and send them next week.

Love you all Bye!!!


Friday, March 13, 2015

March 3, 2015

Hey Family,

Germany was good this week. Yes, I am in what used to be East Germany. I have found out some history in this area.  I went to Weimar and that has some crazy history. I saw some of the Berlin wall there while driving by on a bus, and I found out it was one of Hitler’s favorite towns. I am not sure why, but there isn’t much here. We live in the first hochhous in Germany. It used to be Carl Zeiss headquarters. He is a famous German guy who invented lenses for cameras and telescopes. Our whole branch is only 13 people. We have about that show up. We just got a new older couple and he was just made the new branch president.

We spent most of the week knocking doors and some of the time we have studies and institute and English class and family home evening and church. We also have another meeting on Friday.  We spent this morning doing service.  Our service today was helping these people at elementary school move stuff from floor one to the second floor. We had to move a safe and the door alone weighed 50 kilos. I weigh about 55 kilos. It was a heavy safe.

No Hannah or Priscilla this week. They have both been busy. We thought Priscilla might show up to church but she didn’t.  That family that showed up at church has never gotten in contact with us. We need to try calling them again.  We met with a guy named Farooq (he is from Pakistan) but that was about it. It has been pretty slow. A lot of appointments fall out which kind of stinks.  I have noticed that I can understand a lot more than I could before though. Although there are lots of phrases I still don’t understand. They say ganz genau a lot which means whole and exactly. Not sure what both words mean together however.
Someone's house was on fire

I bet Hawaii is nice right now.  I hope you have fun.  We heard you can get tickets round trip to Hawaii for about $400 from here. I don’t know if I entirely believe that rumor.  My companion and I joke about sending our mission president a picture from Hawaii and tell him we have found a few new investigators there.
I have not been on the Autobahn yet. I have only been in a car 3 times since I got here to Germany. The Autobahn just means highway, and there are certain sections of highway with no speed limit.
Well I have to go soon. I have been here in the library a long time now. I will try to remember to take more pictures next week. I don’t do a good job at taking a lot. And we don’t have any castles close to us but I will take a picture of the one just down the street. It is just a wall and a tower.  Other than that we have none. Well have a good time in Hawaii everyone and be safe!!!