October 26, 2015 1st week in Denmark!!
Hey everyone!! I've survived my first week in Denmark! It's crazy here. I thought I'd send this weeks report out to everyone. My mom made a blog elderparkerweese.blogspot.com There I will have each weeks report and lots of pictures so instead of sending out my whole week report to everyone, you can check it out on the blog! I still want personal emails from everyone and I will reply on my P-days which on Mondays! It's about 10:40 right now in Denmark so back home its like 1 in the morning haha.
Anywho, this week has been nuts! So it started off with me leaving the MTC Monday the 19th at 8:00 a.m. to head to the Salt Lake airport and catch a flight to Chicago. Once we got to Chicago we found out our flight had been delayed. 30 min passed, then an hour, than an hour and a half, then 2 hours, FINALLY after about 2 hours and 15 minutes our airplane was deemed "safe" and ready to cross the ocean to London. This caused us to miss our Denmark flight and we had to chill around in the London airport for about 6 hours. So we left the MTC at 8 Monday morning and finally got to Denmark about 7:30 Tuesday night. All of us were drained. We had dinner with the mission pres. and his wife at there home and spent our first night there. They are amazing people. They love their missionaries so much and I feel like I have a personal relationship with both of them, which is crazy cause they are over about 100 other missionaries!
The next day we went into Copenhagen where we had interviews with the mission pres., filled out some paper work in the mission office, then did our first ever street contacting. We were given a Book of Mormon, paired with a missionary that had been in the field for a bit, and then scurried out into the streets of Copenhagen to contact people. I was sooooo nervous. Oh my Danish is trash right now so I had no clue what to say! We got all sorts of reactions. People weren't interested, didn't even give us a second to talk, others let us speak then said they didn't care, but we were able to give some pass a long cards to a few. Later that day we found out who our companions were and our first areas.
My companions name is Ældste Jensen. He is a pretty cool guy. He comes from Sandy, Utah and has been on his mission for about 9 months. My first area is in Sønderborg. The area is pretty big and covers Sønderborg as well as a few surrounding cities and towns. Its on the very south end of Denmark and borders Germany. In fact, for baptisms, the nearest font is in Germany so we go there to do them! It took a 2 hour train ride, then a 1 hour car ride from Copenhagen to get to my apartment. So I was dead, soo much traveling. But yeah we have a pretty big area, total population around 80,000 people. No wards, just one branch with 38-40 members. They are amazing people! Some drive almost 2 hours to get to the church house! I love them so much and can't wait to get to know each one of them.
Denmark is beautiful. So many trees, small towns, old buildings, castles, bridges, boats, fields, its impossible to explain! Such a culture shock to me. I have no clue what's going on because all the signs are in Danish and everyone is speaking Danish so I feel really lost. Every day gets better though. Hopefully I can pick up on the language sometime! haha
So these past few days have been getting things done and buying what I need to so I can get settled in. We have done lots of street contacting and knocking. We get all sorts of responses here. The other night I had a conversation with a drunk about the Book of Mormon and scheduled a time to meet with him again (hopefully this time he will be sober) and that same night we were asking a lady for some directions and kind of small talking, but as soon as she realized we were missionaries she cussed us out and scurried away. That's the biggest problem here, the people are nice and are fun to talk to, but as soon as they find out we are missionaries they treat us horribly and don't even give us the time of day. haha oh well!
There have been 3 baptisms here in the past 3 years, so it's a really tough area. I feel like there is a lot we can do as missionaries to improve that, but I need to get my Danish down before I can really do anything.
My apartment is cool, just this tiny little one bedroom, one bathroom, a living room, and a kitchen that is so small you can touch both ends if you extend your arms straight out. Super small, old, but hey we have a piano (with about 15 broken strings and extremely out of tune) and some pretty soft couches (that are junk, but hey still soft haha)
The food here is BOMB! My favorite to drink right now is called Saft. It's this super high concentrate of flavor that is put in water. It comes in tons of different flavors of berry and tastes delicious! The chocolate and pastries here are the BEST! All the food is pretty good just extremely expensive. Everything here is way expensive. I had to drop 600 Krowns (roughly 100 bucks) on a Dyna (super soft and puffy blanket) so I stay warm and don't freeze to death at night. The temperatures are dropping everyday because of the oncoming winter. It's crazy, the sun rises around 7 and is completely down by like 5:30, When we contact in the evenings after dinner I feel like it's midnight!
Pretty crazy lifestyle here. All of Denmark basically is Sex, Alcohol, Partying, and just living in the moment. Everywhere you go it's like naked people on the buses, signs, advertising. We never go door to door on Friday nights cause everyone is just slammed and partying! You'll get drunks answering the door, or naked people and we just think "ohhh boy, here we go again" It's all good though cause me and my comp are making the best out of it all and when someone tells us to eff off or kill ourselves, we just walk away laughing.
Denmark is great though! It's been such an adventure this first week. I already love the Danish people (which is a huge mixing pot also, there are a lot of Islam refugees here and people from all over the world going to school here because it is free) Denmark is BEAUTIFUL! Basically just getting used to the area. I know that I will have tons of stories each week about investigators and the great work that we are doing here.
I love and miss everyone back home and hope the best for you all! Vi ses, hej hej
fra Sønderborg Denmark