We have recently returned from a lovely weekend in Phitsanulok. Friday was an average day.. teaching, watching Hunchback of Notre Dame (1 & 2), getting ice cream, and exploring a new street in Phitchit that we had never before been down. Saturday morning also entailed us mostly just moseying around the house (especially since Whitney and I slept in until 11:00). But at 3:25 we caught a train to go to Phitsanulok. Apparently it is much more ideal to ride in the afternoon because the seats had more room and were padded, and THERE WAS AIR CONDITIONING. Air Con's (as the Thai people like to say) are pretty much the greatest things ever. No joke. Our ride there was really quite luxurious, not to mention our friend Mink ready and waiting for us to take us to get ice cream. We got ice cream, shopped around a little at the mall, and then were picked up by another friend, Sand. The seven of us then went bowling. For three hours. That was indeed the package that we chose, although we hardly paid any attention to the game at all by the end. I was just content to break 100.
Sand and Mink took such great care of us. We went to Sand's house, where she ordered us pizza and we rented the movie The Tourist. We spent the night at her nice house and then went to church with her in the morning. I am always so surprised and impressed with the way these wonderful people go out of their way for us. The members in this branch have always made sure we were included and felt welcome to be at church. I love the feeling here. Not only do we have members doing kind acts of service for us, but I feel that the Thai people around us in general are very willing to help us. On the train ride home, Laura, Whitney, and I were trying to figure out which stop we needed to get off. Although we try to act as inconspicuous as possible (and we really should know which stop is ours by now anyway) it is still obvious to everyone around us that we aren't quite sure what we are doing. As we were deciding which stop was ours, a man came up to me and asked where we were going. He then told us which stop to get off of, shook my hand, said "thank you," and then got off of the train. Things like that seriously happen all of the time. We really are well taken care of.
After church we had another baptism. This time it was the branch president's wife, so he got to baptize her and welcome her into the church. You could tell that they were both just so happy. It seems like the elders are having some good success. They are really funny. Elder Iverson was called to be the first counselor in the branch presidency and sat on the stand today, so we had the pleasure of having Elder Dixon be our translator. He has only been here for a couple of months. After Fast and Testimony Meeting was over, he apologized to us and said "Sorry. Everything I said was mostly just my testimony." That explains the funny faces Elder Iverson kept making when he would hear a little bit of what Elder Dixon was saying to us.
Teaching has been going great. We are really getting into the flow of things and the kids seems to like us a lot. Thursday was a lot of fun because we got to go swimming with the kids at the garden home. Aw man, the kids couldn't be cuter.