Monday, April 22, 2013

And time marches on!

At the end of this week we will have been on our mission for 3 months.  I told a friend that somehow it seems longer.  Senior missionaries keep saying that all of a sudden it speeds up, but we haven't experienced that yet.  However, it has been interesting to me to realize how quickly you can adjust to a new place to live; new customs; new foods; new city; new church; and function when you don't know what is being said most of the time.  We have found  that as we adjust it starts to feel like the norm.  I guess in our mind, we've had to adjust or we couldn't bare to be away from family and friends.

Today is P-day...Although it's a day off, it's really not a day off.  After Alan and I went grocery shopping early this morning, he went over to the church to meet the building maintance coordinator to arrange to have some plumbing done to fill the baptismal pool for the baptisms this Sat.  He also met with the Branch Pres. to go over finances.  By 1:30 I had made brownies for an Elders birthday party tonight and a big batch of cookies to take on our visits; cleaned the apartment; done three batches of washing; and conversered with the mission nurse about a health condition one of our elders is having.  Typical P-day!

We had to go back to the Croation boarder again on Tues. because our passport stamps were not stamped in dark enough ink.  They get very ticky tacky here.  So when we returned, we again went into the police station and again applied for our Visas.  He finally excepted our applications and we should have our Serbian Visas in two weeks.  However, if we were moved to another country, we would have to start the process over again.  It's not uncommon for missionaries in this mission to have to apply when ever they move from one country to another.

Because we are having two baptisms this Sat. (yeah), we have been trying to find a place to baptize.
The Sava river is too high and scary plus cold right now; there are not hotels with swimming pools; no public pool; but we found a man who owns a hotsprings but he wants $6.00 per person which includes those attending, even though they won't be getting in the water.  That could add up to over $100.00 dollars (almost half of the years budget).  So we found out that Novi Sad has a plastic pool, sort of a swimming pool that is deep but not wide.  Since we had District meeting in Novi Sad, we stuffed the pool and ladder in the car and brought it back.  Nothing seems easy here.  I will let you know about the baptisms next blog posting.

Last week we also met with a man and wife who are inactive members.  He's a very angry, paranoid man who kept bringing up concerns about the church.  As we solved each concern, he would bring up another problem, as he called it.  The last being that we serve water and not wine for the sacrament.  We finally ask if he wanted to be a member of the church or have his name removed from the records.  "Remove his name" he said, but we don't think that his wife wants her name removed but he is very verbally abusive and I am sure that she will eventually ask to have her name removed as well.

It is finally turning to spring here and the surrounding area is beautiful because of all the farm land that has been planted or being planted.  When we travel, it looks like a patch work quilt.  We love looking out our back window into the yards below and watching the lady on her balcony behind trim her many plants.  I don't think she realizes that we can also see right into her house and all her states of we are careful when we look, mostly just in the day time.  Here is a picture of the back yards behind us and the other pictures are these apartments from the front side of their street where they enter.
The front of the back yards shown below.

This is how the buildings look behind.  You can see the high
walls between property and the remaining marks of
older buildings that were once there. 

The small space between house
and tree offer sight of
the apt. balcony across the
way plus inside the house.
In the winter it was very open.  There
is a grass yard below.

This is the other backyard we can
see.  Several people live back
here.  It is a coming and going place.

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