|Me and one of the youth here in Drammen. Way cool guy!|
December 19, 2016
Dear Family & Friends,
Wow! Hectic week, but a great one at that!
After an amazing 6 months in the Arctic circle, I moved back down to Oslofjorden. It was really sad saying bye to everyone up there in Bodø. They are just so incredible up there. They were and still are such great examples of the kind of person I want to be.
After having a great stay in Bodø, I said bye to Elder Dawes. I went through airport security and started the next chapter of my mission here in Norway.
A quick thank you to all of those that I got to get to know in Bodø!
Luckily, all of my luggage made it to Oslo (I'd be really concerned if it didn't). I caught the Flytog (the airport's train system) and started my way through the oh-so-familiar winding hills, through Oslo, through good ol' Sandvika, and continued down to Drammen.
I got off the train, and made my way off the platform and found all of the Drammen Elders. My companion is Elder Hoopes. We came to Norway at the same time (we actually sat right next to each other in class in the MTC in Provo, UT also). So it was exciting seeing him again. He's from California, and loves the beach (a HUGE beach guy). Elder Jefferies is also in our apartment. I served with him at the beginning of my mission up in Alta. He was my second companion. Elder Jefferies is also training a new missionary, Elder Johnson. We have an awesome apartment, and a bunch of great guys. So long story short, it'll be a great time in Drammen!
Drammen is GIANT! Ok, not really. But kind of. There's a lot more people in Drammen than Bodø. Drammen actually is one of the largest cities in Norway. It has one of the biggest congregations too in all of Norway. I showed up to church yesterday and was practically overwhelmed. There had to be over 200 members there! I've been pretty used to about a dozen in church, so it was quite the change. But it's a good one. If there's anything I've learned, it's that all of the members here in Norway are incredible. They are the greatest examples of what I'd like to be one day. There's no doubt about that!
It's interesting moving back down here to Eastern Norway. This is where part of my family actually comes from (like 150 years ago, but still). We drove through this area called Eiker, right outside of Drammen, and it dawned on me I was practically in the same spot that some of my ancestors were from. It was just a real neat experience being where my family used to be.
And last but not least, CHRISTMAS!!!!!!! Ok, so now it's been about a year since I talked much about Christmas traditions in Norway.
Well, to sum it up, it's INCREDIBLE!!!
But I can elaborate a bit. Any time that you have 4 days of Christmas, it HAS to be great. so they have Little Christmas Eve (Lillejulaften) on the 23rd, Christmas Eve (Julaften), which actually is the biggest of the days of Christmas (it's when Santa comes). That's on the 24th. Then you have the Førstejuledag on the 25, the first day of Christmas. and then the second day of Christmas (Andre juledag) on the 26th. It's just a great time to just spend at home with family or at your cabin.
Food at Christmas time is wonderful! There's ribbe, pinnekjøtt, potatoes, kjøttkaker, and tons of baked goods. It's like the greatest assortment of food you can think of!
Well I hope you all have a Merry Christmas! Take care and have a wonderful holiday season coming up!
Luke 2:11 "For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord."
Merry Christmas! God Jul!