Yesterday was a whirlwind. WARNING: to all those tender hearts out there - this may make you cry. Papa Jim, pull out those tissues. It is my intention.
We sat around at the Manchester stake center for waay too long, waiting while President Preston interviewed each one of individually. We played some of those brilliant missionary games like giving each person a random object and 10 seconds to relate it to the gospel. Finally, FINALLY our new trainers arrived. We, new missionaries (greenie as now a derogatory term apparently) were led out of one door by President and Sister Preston and around the building to enter another door.
Inside the door and lining the hall the were all of the missionaries in the England Manchester Mission. The elders began singing to us, "Called to Serve" in those booming men voices that I've always loved. Despite feeling a bit like they were looking at us like new puppies, the hymn and the excitement and the spirit hit me hard. This uniqe combination also served the purpose of completely undoing any composure I had (little to begin with) and I started laughing and crying. All the anticipation had built up and up (I'd been waiting for about 8 hours at this point) so that I could barely contain myself. I looked like an idiot I'm sure.
Once in the chapel there was a line of all the new trainers there to greet us with hugs and handshakes. We sat on the stand and President Preston called us one by one to meet our trainers (who he'd just assigned a half hour ago.)
And that's how I ended up sharing a flat with another companionship in a lovely area called Rhyl. In Wales. We went running on the beach this morning. My trainer has been out a mere 12 weeks and we're white washing this area - meaning neither of us have been here before. Usually the trainer has some background experience. This is going to be fantastic. Take a close look at some pictures of me because I may never come back.