Man, I don't even know where to begin aye? Its been a crazy busy week. Tuesday and Wednesday were pretty normal days. Wednesday night was pretty cool. Our ward mission leader in one of our wards texted us and asked if anyone was feeding us. We said no hoping that he was going to feed us haha. So invited us over for dinner because is wife and kids are out of town. We went over for dinner and we started talking about how the work was going and other missionary stuff. After we talked about mission stuff, we started to get personal with him. He opened up with us about how he didn't go on a mission and all this stuff. It was really cool! We talked to him like we were all best friends. He's 25 years old. So he’s super young we ended up talking the rest of the night with him which was cool.
Thursday we had zone training. The zone leaders were talking about driving incidents that have happened in the pacific missions. They gave us all these statistics about driving and how we need to be more safe when we are driving. Later on they go on to say one missionary has passed away due to a car accident in Vanuatu. All of a sudden my heart sank and got this weird feeling in my stomach. My first transfer I was in a trio and the Elder that was with us was a visa waiter to Vanuatu. I started to think if it was him. I told my self no way it was him. I went about my day as normal trying not to think much of it.
Around 4pm that day, I get a phone call from the assistants. One of the assistants was my zone leader in my first area and he served with the Elder in Vanuatu as well. He asked me if I had heard about him and I said no I haven't heard anything, I just heard that someone passed away. I told him I thought it was Elder Ratu who was one of my companions. The Assistant Elder Pinono took a deep breath and said it was him. I busted out in tears. That ruined my whole week. Me and him were tight. I didn't know what to do. I've never been in a position like this where I have had someone that close to me be gone. It ripped my heart out. He was like my best friend. He was so cool. We would talk about how he would come back and visit me while I’m on the mission because he is from New Zealand. I get emotional talking about it. It was super hard to get over and still is. Out of all people it was him. I am gonna miss him.
To make things worse, we had to attend a Tangi (funeral) that same night. I told myself that I will just have to forget about this for now and move on. The Tangi was sweet. There funerals are way different than ours. It’s a three day event. They hold it in a Marae which is a Maori meeting house. They do several ceremonies throughout those 3 days. And in order to enter the Marae you have to be welcomed in by a lady who is singing something in Maori. Before you enter you have to take off your shoes. After that you go around and meet the family and greet them, except you don't greet with just a hand shake. For the females you kiss them on the cheek and for the males you hongi. A hongi is where you lightly touch your nose and forehead to theres. It sounds really weird and it is kinda weird when you do it the first few times but its really cool. So we did that to like over 200 people which took ages... ugh. But it was a sweet experience for us to get more involved with the culture. So that was cool. We did that all day Thursday and Friday.
We also had stake conference this week which was pretty cool. It was probably one of the best stake conferences I’ve been to in a while. The weekend was petty eventful. Everything is really good. Our area is doing a lot better now. Things are starting to pick up. Oh and once P-day ends at 6 tonight we will be driving to Auckland to spend the night with the missionaries and than tomorrow morning we will be heading off to Hamilton to go to the temple. Im so excited. I can’t wait to go to the temple. It feels like its been ages since the last time I went. Thats all I have for this week!