Well everyone, the day I knew was coming has finally come… Every two months, transfers roll around, and for all of this time I’ve simply stayed put. But now, after 8 glorious months in the city of Celje, I am being transfered to Kranj. How do I describe my feelings about this? I guess I’d say it’s a strange mix of great excitement, a bit of nervousness, and plain old heartbreak, all packed into one. A mission truely is the labratory of life, and you experience an entire lifetime in these two years.
But I guess I can start with my week 🙂
Monday was a fantastic p day, and the 4 of us went with Elder and Sister Hansen to the coastal city of Piran. I’ve gotten very used to the “European alpine village” feel of the country, and this was a completly different Slovenia. This was much more “mediterranean” and is like what I imagine Venice to be. Red roofs, winding little alleys filled with people on mopeds, and a general smell of salt and fish haha. It was SUCH a cool little town, and we had a great time. After making the 2 hour drive from Celje, we started by walking around the edge of the peninsula along the water. We of course had to put our feet in. We made a hike up to the old church, climbed the belltower, and just wandered for a while. The 6 of us had a nice seafood lunch, some ice cream followed by a little more exploring, and then it was back home. Such a good p day, and I loved the coast. Hearing waves and seaguls and touching the water actually made be miss home in a way… But it’s all good. I took a million pictures (of course) and will send those all your way.
I’m afraid the rest of the week pales in comparison to our Piran excursion, but it was still a good one. The biggest event of the week was definitely transfer announcements on Thursday. I guess I’ll get back to that topic…
I’ve known for a while that I’d be leaving Celje. It’s unusual to stay somewhere 8 straight months, so being transfered was inevitable. But, it didn’t become “real” until Thursday when the announcements were actually made. That’s when I found out that I would be going to Kranj. I leave tomorrow morning for the new area!
To be 100% honest, it’s been kind of a tough week because of that. With each and every goodbye, it hurts a little bit more. But I also feel more and more ready to go. It’s strange. In fact, I still can’t believe how strange missions are in general… the Lord takes a random 18 year old from California, plops him down in Celje, Slovenija, and then expects him to love the people there. I mean, people always say before you leave on a mission: “Oh, you’re going to just fall in love with the people there!” Honestly, I don’t think I had a clue what that meant. Now that I’m leaving Celje though, I don’t think I could understand it more clearly.
In these 8 months, I’ve grown to love the members of Celje so, so much. When there’s only 20 members and you’re in the same branch for so long… you sort just think of them like your family. So saying goodbye to all of them has been hard. There’s really no other way to put it.
That being said though, you don’t learn as a missionary by staying put. The Lord had things He needed me to learn in Celje, He had experiences for me, and had people I needed to meet. But I’ve done what needed to be done, and it’s time to move on and learn more things and meet more people! So this is also a happy thing. It’s a happy-sad thing haha.
All-in-all though I’m excited for Kranj. It has what many consider the strongest branch in the mission, and is full of some very strong families. I cannot wait for the chance to get to know all of them, and I know there will be a lot I can learn from the people there.
I know that the Lord has a plan for my mission, and so my goal is to simply be open enough to allow the Holy Ghost to guide me along that path. I love the people of Celje (and always will), I cannot wait to now grow to love the people of Kranj, and I am excited to see what the next adventures will be!
I love you all so much, and will hear from you soon… from the library in… Kranj!