Monday, April 28, 2014

The weeks are zipping by...

The weeks are passing so quickly seems we just turn around and it is Sunday again.  Sunday is always an interesting day because church is certainly an experience.  Alan and I sit in church and as I have said before, it is all in Serbian and I keep waiting for the "gift of tongues or ears" to work but sadly it doesn't. Just imagine what it would be like to sit in church and not understand, it is worse than the  driest speaker (I almost said high counselmen) you have ever heard. Sometimes our branch president will translate a copy of his talk into English and we can see they give wonderful talks.  But we have been here so long now that even in Relief Society the teacher forgets to have it translated for me and then turns to me and says in English, "Sister Seelos, what do you think about that"?  Dah!  We all just have a good laugh and move on.  I just have to remember that these are choice times that I will never forget. 

We had one investigator at church.  He smokes as do many of the investigators.  He says that he needs to smoke about every 20 minutes but he said that when he is in our church he does not have the urge to smoke.  Smoking is one of the obstacles that people have to overcome when they decide to join the church
(I can only identify when I think of giving up Chocolate, FOREVER!)

Last week was Easter and many people brought us decorated boiled eggs.  It is their tradition and many people color their eggs using onion skin. The children here go house to house with their Easter baskets and it is kind'a like Trick or Treating...they get boiled eggs or treats.  Even our English students brought us eggs the following Tuesday.  I took them home and put them all in the fridge and took a picture.  
The leaves on the eggs were attached with nylon net before dying.

Last week Alan, I, and Nemanja went to visit our sweet member who initially walked 9 miles to church (our 9 mile man, as we call him).  If you remember, he used to live in another town in a house with no water, heat, electricity.  It was a bare shell of a house.  Anyway, we moved him into a small apt. in town that some of his distant relatives are paying for.  He is so proud of  his new place that is basically two small rooms and a bathroom.  But after what he came from, it is luxury.  
Alan, Zivan, and Nemanja

Zivan in his living room/bedroom

Outside the small apartment
We have another couple here in Belgrade who are from Washington DC, the Goodsells, that have become good friends and confidants.  They will leave to pick up their missionary son in Germany May 5th and then travel home together.  We will miss them and their support.  Duska, our Relief Society Pres., had them and us to dinner on Friday night.  She is a wonderful cook and when people ask me what I will miss from Serbia besides the people, it is Duska's cooking.  She cooked a very traditional meal of stuffed peppers, sarma (stuffed cabbage leaves), and tomatoes and peppers with her wonderful bread.  She also had one of her cakes for dessert (her cakes could rival the Beehive house cakes).

Duska...she would hate this picture

Ada, her great daughter.....
I think that we have mentioned in the past that Alan has been talking with an Orthodox Priest about coping his church records.  So many of the records in Serbia were destroyed during the war which can make it difficult to do genealogy work here.  We are hoping that the Priest will be willing to have them copied to preserve them from ever being destroyed.  Alan and our Branch President are meeting with the Priest on Tues. night.  If he agrees, church headquarters sends a team out to copy the records.  So that is our prayer this week (among others)

OK...for our "Only in Serbia" moment:

If you have a family member or friend who is a lawyer, you may want to make sure they do not see this segment because they will be very envious and may end up moving to Serbia just for this perk!

We have a prominent Sremska Mitrovica Lawyer who has his office down stairs in our apartment building and we thought you might like to see the office of an important lawyer in Sremska.  (Daniel, whatever you do, don't let Zac view these pictures)
Attractive entrance!
Spacious desk area

Inviting waiting room!

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