I can’t really say that before I got here I knew what a moon cake was, but I can fully assure you that within the past few weeks I have eaten enough for a lifetime! The Mid-Autumn Festival was just this past week which is just a holiday where people get together to eat, look at the full moon, eat some moon cakes, and light up some lanterns. I’m not really sure where the moon cake part of it came from, but people sure love to give them out! A moon cake is like a small little cake, usually made out of lotus paste and has a salted duck egg cooked into the middle of it. Also, they are extremely bad for you- like 800 calories each! It also turns out that most people don’t even really like them that much, including the people who live here, it’s just kind of a tradition that they carry on doing each year. I enjoy them a decent amount, but after you have too many the charm wears off a little bit, haha! It has been fun these past few weeks seeing the different decorations and lanterns that people have put up for the holiday.
I don’t know if I have said it before, but we really have the best ward ever! One of our members took us out to Pizza Hut to eat this week and it was really good! Now now, I know what you’re thinking. Pizza Hut doesn’t really sound that exciting. But let me tell you, in Hong Kong it’s a whole different story. We got there and it was a sit-down restaurant, and a pretty nice one at that. We of course ordered some pizza, but also got some soup, spare ribs, fries, and some peach ice cream crumble thing! It was all so good and the member just kept ordering more and more things to eat that by the time we finally made it out I was more than just a little bit full!
Something interesting that happened this week: I met a guy in the MTR a couple of weeks ago and we’ll just say that he was a little crazy, but wanted to meet with us so we scheduled him to turn over to the Elders in the ward. We all got to the church and gave him a tour and tried to have the Elders teach him and share a lesson, but he was not having it. He kept saying that all he wanted to do was learn English so they scheduled him for next week with the promise that they would teach him English if they could also share a message. He called like 5 minutes after he left to cancel and ask if there were any foreign women he knew that he could marry! Haha, I don’t think that we’ll be seeing him again!
People LOVE to take pictures with white people. It’s usually people from Mainland that ask to take our picture, but the other day when I was riding the subway a man from Indonesia tapped me on the shoulder and asked to take a picture with me, too. My goal by the end of my mission is to have my picture in every country in the world! There are probably so many pictures of missionaries on random people’s phones throughout the world!
There is this less-active popo that we try to visit once every few weeks when she lets us come over. She is in her 80s and is just always so sad, I don’t know that I’ve ever seen her smile. She just wants to die and talks about how bad her life has been and how there isn’t really anything good left. We visited her on Friday and read some scriptures with her about hope and what it will be like when we get to see Jesus again. She started talking about her sad past again and all of the poverty and abuse that she had encountered throughout her years and me and my companion just sat there listening. She was telling stories that we had already heard before, but this time I was trying to listen to her, really listen to her, and feel the love that God has for her. After listening to her for quite some time, I expressed my love to her and asked to take a picture with her. I don’t know why, but this made her so happy and I saw her smile for what must have been the first time! By the time that we left, she was asking for our addresses so she could come visit us in America! It was such a blessing to see this renewal in her and to be able to help her feel just a little happier by doing something as simple as just listening to her. You never know how much you can help someone by just being there for them.
I know that we all have a Heavenly Father, a perfect friend who is always waiting to listen to us. He is there to listen to all of your worries, all of your successes, all of your frustrations. And more than that, He is here to help you and to give you the strength that you need.
Gaa yauh! Carry on!
18 Dorset Crescent
Kowloon Tong, Kowloon
1) a float for the festival in the park
2) some food we made at a relief society activity
4) the inside of a moon cake- can you see the egg? 😉
5) just a sampling of some of the moon cakes we got!