Normally we receive Fresh Nővér's emails in the middle of the night, but when we woke up this morning none of us had not heard from her. I had a pleasant surprise, however, when an email from her popped up on my phone about 10:30 am! The missionaries serving in Székesféhervár had gone on an excursion and did not email home until Monday evening, Hungarian time.
She started out her email with the following: "This week was good, hard, fun, faith growing, funny, crazy and every other emotion. Missions seem to do that to you!"
One thing that Fresh Nővér and Broadhead Nővér did this week was travel to Budapest for interviews with President Smith. This is a photo of her at the train station on a chilly evening. Hungary is described as having "cold, cloudy, humid winters." It may only be October, but it looks like winter has arrived, at least on this day!
|Fresh Nővér trying to stay warm |
while waiting at the train station.
Today the missionaries serving in Székesféhervár went to visit Lake Balaton and Szigliget Castle which are an hour from the city. (as best I could figure out using Google maps)
Lake Balaton, or "The Balaton" as the Hungarians call it, is a freshwater lake in the Transdanubian region of Hungary. It is the largest lake in Central Europe and and a foremost tourist destination. The northern shore is known for its historic character and the production of wine, while the southern shore is known for its resort towns. Of note historically, the last major German offensive of World War II, Operation Frühlingserwachen, was conducted in the area of Lake Balaton in March 1945. Also, during the communist regime it was a meeting place for many families as not only did citizens from the Eastern Bloc vacation there, but people from West Germany were able to come also.
|On this map of Hungary you can see both |
Székesféhervár and Lake Balaton.
|Fresh Nővér's photo of "The Balaton."|
|At the edge of the dock with the lake |
in the background.
The castle or fortress of Szigliget is located on the eastern edge of the northern shore of Lake Balaton in the region of Keszthely. The settlement of Szigliget existed in the Neolithic and Bronze Ages, and the ruins of the medieval fortress stand on the top of Várhegy hill.
|Fresh Nővér on the wall surrounding |
the fortress of Szigliget.
|"I went rock climbing on an ancient fortress today ... |
the elders thought I was going to die ... I didn't!!! :)))"
|Fresh Nővér with the fortress ruins in the background.|
|The Székesféhervár District at the fortress with the |
beautiful Hungarian countryside in the background.
|This is not a Disneyland ride, but Fresh Nővér and |
Broadhead Nővér look like they are having a lot of fun!!!
Update on the "beast" ... Fresh Nővér's nickname for the Hungarian language:
"So this week was up and down with the Magyrul (Hungarian). I have been trying to be really positive about it and just say 'I can do it, I can speak Hungarian' ... but sometimes it just gets the best of me and so I get sad and frustrated and blah … (I’m not perfect). This week I have been studying about faith a lot because I feel like that is where it starts. So I read Ether 12 one day and it was so helpful!!! Hungarian is my weakness here on the mission. It is sooo hard for me. People have told me that I am bad at speaking Hungarian since my first transfer and that has made me feel so dumb. In Ether 12:27 it says that God helps to make our weaknesses strong. As I read that I was thinking about how I don’t think that God necessarily takes the things we are bad at and then turns us into pros if we have faith, but I think that those weaknesses bring us strength in other ways. Like, they may bring us closer to God and build our relationship with him. So if I never fully get Hungarian, at least I’ll have a good solid relationship with God at the end of my mission, Right?
"Also, I was studying a few of the conference talks from the General Conference in April, and I read Elder Holland’s talk 'Lord I Believe', and it is sooooo good!!!! I love the story about the man with the lame son who didn’t believe that he could be healed, and so he said something like 'help me with my unbelief.' It’s so cool because sometimes I’m like, 'I wish I had faith to believe that could happen', but I guess that I can ask for help to have more faith and for God to help me believe. :))) It’s so cool and real! I find myself saying a lot, 'Hmmm, I’m not sure I can do this Hungarian thing... but I want to do it and I want to believe in myself.'
"Anyways...these two things really helped to strengthen my faith and to keep me from being a total wreck... Also, President Utchdorf's talk from the YW session last April was really good too. It's for everyone, not just girls!
"I would really recommend reading any or all of these if your needing some comfort or guidance or your trying to learn Hungarian. Hahahaha!!!"
Just a little example of what Fresh Nővér is trying to learn ... This is 1 Nephi 3:7 in Hungarian:
És lőn, hogy én, Nefi ezt mondtam atyámnak: aMegyek és megteszem azon dolgokat, amelyeket az Úr megparancsolt, mert tudom, hogy az Úr nem ad bparancsolatokat az emberek gyermekeinek, csak akkor, ha cutat készít számukra, hogy végrehajthassák azt a dolgot, amit megparancsol nekik.