Monday, July 21, 2014

WEEK TWO: Shenme dongxi!!!!

Hello everyone!! This has definitely been a great week! Of course how could it not be...oh and the subject line literally means "what stuff" in Chinese, but it's used like "WHAT THE HECK"!!

We heart the MTC

Well new missionaries came in on Wednesday! So I'm officially not the new kid anymore!! Which is cool because I remember how much I looked up to those elders and sisters when I first got here, but scary because now I can't act like a new kid! I'm expected to know the language and how everything works now! Oh boy....

Well, I've taught four lessons in Chinese ONLY so far! Our first pretend mudaoyou (investigator) is now our laoshi (teacher)...WEIRD!! So the first 3 hours of class time will be taught by her, and the last 3 hours of class time will still be taught by Wang Laoshi, but she will also be our new mudaoyou! It's crazy! 

Regarding the language...I'm learning SO much! But it still doesn't feel like enough. 5 out of the 10 people in my class took Chinese previously, and yeah i'm not one of those. But i feel like if I apply myself and learn 25 words a day, I'll be pretty good. It's very very intimidating to have 6 hours of class time where all you hear is Zhongwen (Chinese) and you have to glean information from it and can only respond in Zhongwen! I know how to pray in Chinese and carry on a brief conversation. 

I know a lot of gospel-related words but nothing really commonly used. But the more I speak  it, the more I learn, so I just gotta keep doing that. It's really hard to memorize all of the words, the accent marks, and the tones because that's how you say them. And I've started working on characters because that's what we're going to have to read on signs and stuff in Taiwan. Talk about intimidating. But we went to a fireside last night by T.C. Christensen (yes, maker of Forever Strong and 17 Miracles) and he said that the Lord will not ask you to do anything that you're not capable of doing. So I must be capable of learning Zhongwen SOMEHOW. 

We talked about stress management this week which was extremely helpful. Its ok to be stressed as long as it motivates you to try harder. So i just gotta keep that in mind. Especially on Sundays. We have to prepare a talk every week and they randomly call on someone to speak. SHENME DONGXI!? Once I feel comfortable enough to speak for 5 minutes in fluent Zhongwen, i'll just raise my hand and say "I volunteer as tribute!" because it's literally the Hunger Games. 

I saw Zach Chase at the MTC this week! Another member of the 49th ward at BYU! I also saw long lost EFY friend Braden Pitt! Crazy how the MTC can bring so many people together!! I sang in the MTC choir this was SO cool to have 500-something missionaries singing together. Not to mention that that many men voices is incredible! And since we can't listen to music in the MTC, it's good to have that in my week. I'm DYING without music!! Oh AND...I got called as Music Coordinator of my zone this week. Me and wo de tongban (my companion) are gonna rock this calling!! We get to pick musical numbers and hymns to sing and such.

Something bad this week: I had to clean the women's showers. Yah. The whole spraying down the showers with a fun foamy soap gun isn't so bad, but when it comes, to pulling hair wads the size of rats out of shower drains, I'm not a fan. But wo de tongban and I made the best of it by singing zhongwen words to the tune of Let It Go! 

Something crazy this week: I WORKED OUT. IN A GYM. Yah I used the elliptical and biking machines this week. And I wasn't even sore!! It's crazy!!! But I need to because of the food....the FOOD IS SO GOOD BUT SO UNHEALTHY!! It's like they know my weaknesses. Brownies and ice cream and cordon bleu and steak and breaded fatty deep fried things...oh boy. So I gotta try harder to resist that. I also played volleyball pretty hard this week. Which is weird and new....

I got blood drawn and x-rays this week for my Visa I step closer to Taiwan baby!!! So exciting!!! It was also exciting because we got to LEAVE THE MTC and walk to the BYU health center! It was weird and I had an incredible sense of freedom and nostalgia because the health center is right across from my old apartments.

I learned everyone's first names this's so weird to find out first names since you only go by last names. Except we don't even go by last names, we go by our Chinese names! So it's super weird! It's like McKenna doesn't even define my existence anymore! Which is true I guess. The name Jesus Christ now defines my existence and I need to dedicate all of my time and efforts to glorifying that name. I need to be prepared enough that when I am called to do something crazy (crazier than learning Chinese), I will be able and ready to. Well, I love the MTC and I love the people around me and I love Chinese!! But I also really, really love getting letters and packages and pictures!!!! :) I miss you all! You're never far from my mind or heart!! 

Sister Wright
(but I'm going to start going by Ren Jiemei)

p.s. my most used words are:
dui (pronounced dway) = form of agreement)
wo bu zhidao= i don't know

duibuqui (dway-boo-chi) = sorry!

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