My birthday was on Wednesday. Yay... It was fun. For the most part, it was like any other day. I opened my packages the night before because I was going to be on an exchange the night of. We only open letters or packages after our nightly planning, so I would have had to wait, then I would be in someone else's area. Thank you so much, everyone who wrote or sent something. I really appreciate everything. I took plenty of pictures. I'm going to Walgreen’s this afternoon and I'll make a picture CD of everything.
We had our zone conference on Tuesday. The focus of missionary work is changing. It's a good change. It's still Preach My Gospel, but it's a focus less on learning the lessons and giving it, and more on teaching skills; asking questions, teaching people instead of lessons, etc. The new DVDs are great! They aren't these missionaries trying to be as perfect as possible, but they're missionaries being themselves, where you can see the good and the bad and learn from it. Reality TV has entered the church, I guess, but it's really good--entertaining, too.
We went to a Chinese buffet with a member during the week. Most of the stuff was normal. They had a few trays of weird stuff, and other stuff I just didn't have the guts to try. Surprisingly, though, my companion, as soon as he saw the tray of baby octopus, he snagged one. After lots of picking it up and staring at it, he forced himself to pop it in his mouth. For whatever reason, he felt compelled to eat that thing. Personally, I think it would make a great story, to be able to say that I did it, but I have absolutely no remorse that I abstained from such an activity. Bleck!
My exchanges are over. I'm very glad about that. It's too stressful. If I serve as district leader any more, I'm going to make sure I get them done as soon as possible, so they will be over as soon as possible. We get transfer calls on Saturday--again. It's all buzzing by. I only have four transfers left, which is a really weird thought. I usually have ideas as far as what is going to happen to the various missionaries in the district I happen to be in, but I'm usually wrong. This time, I have absolutely no clue what's going to happen--with anyone.
I also did my first baptismal interview. That was an interesting experience. The man has a really rough past and made intense changes to get to where he is. We went to, and taught at, his baptism the next day. It turns out, he is related to the Garza's from the