Titles are the hardest to make up! July 28, 2013

Well hello.
Alright. my week, i met some cool people!! yep an awesome man that plays the flute! Pretty neat.  I met an old crazy man that gave me his business card. It has a charcoal drawing of himself. In English it has "I can charcoal drawing of myself and like to play accordion." Super legit. Has his number and name too. haha This guy played some Italian sounding music and also played some other fun stuff. 
Then one day we were walking looking for people and I saw this older guy sitting on the side of the wall thing by the river eating some of this "yellow skin" fruit. I had seen it around so I decided to ask him what it was called. He told me and then had us eat fruit with him because he had a lot. haha Super cool guy, just happy to sit and eat fruit with us. It made me smile because I knew that the Lord placed him there to give me another boost of confidence.

Well this week went by fast and it was good!
We had Zone exchanges! It was great! I went with Elder Groesbeck. He is such an awesome missionary. He taught me a lot. We also enjoyed drinking our Kool Aid together. Yes, I love kool aid. Yes, I will love it forever. That is why I am Elder Sugar. 
Alright this is going to be a short one. Sorry, but i just don't know what to write about today. 

Alright It was awesome. The Lord totally is the best.  I was struggling at being pretty scared approaching people and speaking the language. So I decided to make a goal to not care about the how bad the language was and do work. I asked the Lord if I did this if He would just help me during the  time I first contacted them and how long they would be willing to talk. It was great because He totally helped!!  It was great, we were able to stop so many more people this week and teach! I loved it. I knew half the time the people wouldn't understand me because of their faces looked lost.. so then I would be like umm.. smile for a second and then re try saying the topic. It seemed to work! haha they basically answered and prayed and everything. So i know that the Lord helped them understand me.

At church there was a lesson about faith and prayer. The teacher shared about youth conference they just had and the differences between two of the youths prayers. One had asked that the weather would be good enough to allow them to do their activities and if not how to figure out how to still be able to do the activities. While the other youth had prayed the rain would stop and the sun would shine. He shared about how we cannot demand God to change everything for us, but we can have faith in Him to help us out. The first youth prayed that if He couldn't change the weather then at least allow them to know what to do.I really liked this. It got me thinking about what I can do to better serve the Lord. 

Alright, shoot I don't know what I wrote. 
all I can say is that the Lord rules. He totally helped me out so much with contacting people and speaking to them. I love Him so much.

So I was asked about my language skills... hahahaha yeah still terrible. but its like whatever. The weather has been super rainy lately. We had an intense thunder and Lightning storm last night. Loved it!!! Thunder so loud it made your kool-aid shake. But it is hot and sunny now. like real hot.

Im done. I will start to write out my emails before so they aren't so bad... sorry. 
elder townsend

I met Bruce Lee July, 21, 2013

how are you?
I am fine thank you.
wow, you're english is so good!
my english very bad laa.
That is a conversation I have a good amount of the time.

Well this week was a goody. Why? I went to the Bruce Lee statue! It was so awesome. There were so many mainlanders there so it was an experience. Why? Well because they love white people and they would pull out their phone/camera and just take a picture of us. or ask to get one with us. then when Elder Falk and I went to get a picture with Bruce Lee a crowd of mainlanders flocked up to us and we became stars.
 Seriously we just stood there doing different poses the whole time and getting pictures. It was hilarious and I felt famous. Also it was our way of doing proselyting on a P-Day. Look at that, the pictures are going to China!! haha 

We had a new Elder move in. His name is Elder Christensen and he is hilarious. He has one move left after this one. He moved in from the office because the other elder here got a visa and took off for Australia. Elder Christensen is so funny and great. And he is a red head. He reminds me a lot of my friend Bret Smith. So darn similar it cracks me up! So fun
Anyways I would like to first point out some fashion tips or things here. 1. the Monsters Inc. Monsters University is HUGE here. Everyone wheres shirts of it or backpacks and bags of it. so super trendy. Next is moles. Yep moles. If you have one, its cool to grow the hair out on it. Basically all the guys I see here have the longest hairs on them. There face is shaved but not the mole. So i don't know if it is a pride thing or a culture thing, but it is cool regardless. Alright this next is my own fashion thing, but I wore and am wearing the same tie for a month. This Wednesday makes a month. it would have been a month last week, but I being a newb didn't wear my tie on one day the 1st week of my tie. I was going to try more, but I cant do it anymore. so i am at least doing a month. 

Food. Durian. It is absolutely terrible. It is onion and bananas combined to make a stinky fruit. terrible. Some members had me try it at a cheng out and it was gnarly. Sister Kwok told me her mother calls it cat crap. so its all good. i ate cat poop.. This family, Kwok family, is so awesome. So nice. Actually one of their daughters is leaving today to go to the MTC. She is going to the San Fransisco Oakland mission and also Oakland temple. This is cool because another elder in our ward is going to that mission too!

Alright on Tuesday and Saturday, we saw some animals.Walking in the city was a rooster. Pretty cool. Then Saturday we came upon 1. Guinea Pig walking in some plants. 2. a colorful parakeet bird. Real fancy. 3. a baby pigeon sitting on a post with an old pohpo (grandma, old women are called grandmas) trying to make it fly. she was doing coos and flapping her arms. 4. some crazy cats that liked us. 5. Tons of toads that would laugh. We would rub the bellies and they would laugh. hilarious. Great day.

Alright, well the Lord is awesome. So this week was a toughy and we weren't having any success. I was really wanting to at least just talk with someone. So finally on Saturday, I saw this guy sitting on a bench eating some ice cream. He was a gentleman and was eating a cone from the new place. So i figured I would ask him about the ice cream. As I approached him, he was like sit down! and then we had a great conversation in English mainly. He had lived in the UK. Well this was just awesome because I have been dying with the language and absolutely terrible. And then I was just having a hard time. So as I prayed this week every day just to talk to someone, Heavenly Father didn't let me down. It was awesome. This guy and I had a fantastic conversation and it made me so happy and feel so great.  He wasn't interested in gospel too much, but he was just super nice and great. It was nice being able to sit down and just talk to someone. 

Well also something super dope was that Roy, my investigator who got baptized two months ago, just got the priesthood!! It was so awesome and great!!! So excited for him. such an amazing experience to see someone who accepted the gospel in his life and being so happy. I love it. so great. Christ is so great and same with his gospel. Well I cant sit still anymore and cant think.
Elder Sugar or Tohng. But its still the same thing.
1. re-enacting the picture at the mtc
2. elder falk and I posing for the mainlanders.

Met Bruce Lee

 Our Mainlander posse- just a few of them

Elder Falk and I -we just like taking pictures

Eating dau fu fah. It is tofu flower pedals. So good-muh fave

fun pic by my home

Elder Christensen

Kwoks home- awesome family!

Stay classy San Diego!! July 15, 2013

Well I didn't email last week because it was Temple Week baby!! So good to be able to go there and just be able to feel the peace and spirit there. love the temple. 

Well not much has happened the past few weeks except 4th of July happened. yeah, it is sad not being in America for it. My companion and I dedicated companionship study to it, so we sang the national anthem, I made a flag and we talked about America. haha So good.

 There is a lady who comes to English class and not really investigating the church anymore take us to a dim sam because we told her it was America's bday. We ate like kings. haha 
Well I guess something that is neat is that I am like a barber. I just cut everyone's hair here. I can do Asian cuts and gwaailouh (its like we are called white devil here... like Ace Ventura) So basically I am getting a lot of practice. We had this former investigator we saw on the street tell us he would come to my shop if i set one up here. he liked my comps cut.

We also had a neat rainstorm where we got caught up finding refuge in a little tin shed while we were finding away from the city. Then the best part after being there for almost an hour (the rain was nuts and we didn't have umbrellas... newbs.) we had these to older Chinese men come up to us. We couldn't escape because there was none. So they proceeded on talking to us (constantly doing the Catholic cross yourself thing) and then they went on talking about war and army. They thanked us personally with handshakes for World War 2. They thanked us for the bomb in Japan...Yeah I wasn't too sure on how to act. but after that we departed ways, never to meet again. haha 

Speaking of men, we have this guy that stands outside of this bar/snooker/no idea place by the church. Well this man is so cool looking. He is a Tri-Ad guy. so legit. always smoking and talking/yelling/cursing at people on the phone. and then pushing his long hair back with his really nice clothes. I always try saying hi, but he ignores. he just looks like a really powerful man too. haha 

Alright well that is pretty much it for that stuff. 
This week we were able to have a pretty awesome experience with a former investigator. So she is the old lady that we ended up not meeting with anymore because of the lack of desire to learn/keep commitments. Well she had always been really bitter because of things that occurred in life. 
One of them that made her sad was that her children would never communicate or visit anymore. they didn't like her. Well we decided to go visit her and just see how she was doing and if we could help her out. As we got to her house she was so excited to see us and introduce me to her son! He had come home. he came from mainland back here to hk to find a job and help with her and the father. 
This was a miracle. I had been praying the past few months for her and if the Lord would allow one of her children's heart to be softened. and He answered my prayers!! When i shared this with her, she was very grateful. But it just hurt my heart that she wasn't willing to open her heart to her Father in Heaven to be blessed. This was a very good learning experience as I learned that Heavenly Father is willing to answer my prayers. I also am learning more on the patience and trust in God. I felt that this wait felt long at the time, but now the wait was worth it because I know so strongly of God's willingness to help us. 

Another scripture that has really strengthened me these past few weeks is in Mosiah 14. Where Abinidi shares about Isaiah 53 about the Savior. in chapter 14 the verses 3-5 really gave me strength. Just being able to remember and know that Christ really did carry my sorrows and that He was rejected of men. It gives me so much comfort to know that even though I was feeling down about everything, that He has felt the same and also has felt those pains so I can ask Him for the comfort because He is the only way I can truly find that comfort.

I also loved in Alma 30:9 when it says it is a privilege for us to serve God. That is making me really re-think of my work out here. Am I really each day thankful through my actions that I have the privilege to serve my Father in Heaven? This has really helped me change my attitude and try to become more like my Savior in this work.

Well all is going alright out here in Tai Po! Thank you for the letters/emails I have been able to get. they really are the best! make me so dang happy. Especially the letters I get from Tanner's mom about his life in Brazil! So hilarious to hear him write about some of the stuff out there. Sounds wild. 
Oh and sorry I am so slow to write back, I always just forget to send the letters. Mainly because I am going to the Bruce Lee statue today baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So stoked!!!! :)
Elder Sugar.
Thats what people call me because my name is same sound as sugar. the character is a wee different, but some of the members/people here like to say sugar. haha

Ni Hao June 30,2013

Yep you better believe it.  I am now a Mandarin elder! They gave me the switch! Looks like I will be able to chat with Buster after all!! Pretty crazy right?? Alright, that happened last night in my dream and I was like whah!? but then I woke up to still being the same.

Alright I may have like 4 minutes here or 30, we will find out. The library messed up the times and also the computers. So i wont be able to be sending any pictures today, sorry.

So the food I discovered this week was eating either a duck or goose mouth. Yeah, not the best. It literally was just the mouth or bill whatever it is called. You eat the tongue and the mouth. Very neat. Our investigator took us to dinner and she loves that and also fried oysters, so that was our dinner. But its all good, i had green bean soup after! :) Also another thing she got us was Red Bean Popsicles. They are surprisingly really good. Just like a frozen version of the soup. haha nothing like a blue popsicle though. 
Oh, we went to the American store! They had Kool-Aid!!! So awesome, except my heart was a little broken because they didn't have blue. ouch.. But I made kool aid and the Asian elders loved it! then I froze the rest and shaved it with a spoon until it became a snow cone. Dedication.

So I love the shirts here and how people half the time can't read them. Yesterday at church we had an older lady in the ward wear a bedazzled shirt that said "Zombie Nation Eats Your Head." Great shirt. hahaha also another good one i saw on the street was "Don't be such a mermaid." I then congratulated another lady today whose shirt said "I Found My Dream Job." She was a little confused, so i explained why. She loved the American telling her what her shirt meant, walked away smiling all big.

These past few weeks have been complete solid days of finding without really any success. I honestly wanted to just go sit in the church some days and enjoy the free AC and just practice the language. But that wasn't the case, we kept working.
 A couple of weeks ago we met a couple and shared our message of the Restoration with them. After they agreed to read the Book of Mormon and pray, they left us smiling. We were able to meet with them this week and have them come to English class! I was so excited and am just praying that they'll continue to learn. 

I am so grateful for the fact that I get to walk around everyday sweating buckets just so I can help someone. One thing I am learning is the importance of truly just loving everyone. I think that is what worked for this couple because God probably had prepared them and this time when I walked up to them, I was just praying so hard to feel His love for them. And right as I began to to say hello, I was overcome with love and happiness. I couldn't stop smiling! It was so great and i just was so happy to talk to them.

 I guess what I am going at here, is that God is so willing to allow us to feel His love for our heavenly brothers and sisters. I am so grateful that I was able to feel that love for them and continually pray to feel that love for everyone else. It is hard though, especially when they tell me No Time! But when that person finally stops, its all worth it. I just want to be like Nephi when he talks about the charity he has for everyone in the end of 2 Nephi. so awesome
Ok, I am totally out of time!!!!!!!

Elder Tohng