Week 49: Snow, snow, snow

Oh my goodness!!  This place just shuts down when it snows.  We are literally an island here and when it snows – that’s it folks.  The stores have no fresh milk or bread, the buses stop running, the mail doesn’t come and everyone is outside wandering the streets, building snow forts and snowmen all over town.

Monday was a beautiful day here.  Not sure when this picture landed on my phone but I love it. 

Tuesday was a little colder and beginning to snow.  Tuesday was zone conference and we had two new missionaries arrive.  Elder Baake and Sister Khoo.  They came in a taxi from Preston.  Then half way through zone conference I headed out in the snow to the airport to pick up the Maxwell’s – our newest senior missionary couple.

Tuesday night after zone conference all the senior missionaries who were there were going to go to dinner together but the weather just kept getting worse so only us local missionaries ended up going out to dinner.  President left for Glasgow because we had heard Wednesday was going to be the worst weather in three years.  I bet the statistics are even more than that.  We have literally been dumped on here and they just don’t get snow like this here.

Wednesday was so snowy we were glad the president had left the night before and he had also told the Maxwells to get on the road as they were being assigned to Glasgow as well.  All the mission cars have been grounded and the missionaries are to stay off public transportation as well because it would stop without any warning and they would possibly be stranded farther from home than they were able to safely walk.  We have lots of missionaries who have bad colds, flu, etc. on top of all this.  So it has been a quiet week for the missionaries.  Many are just nursing themselves back to healthy status.

Elder Berry and Elder Turner on exchanges from Dublin.
Macauley at the baptism
Elder Worley and Elder Butler with an investigator.

Wednesday night we had a wonderful baptism.  Two people were baptised.  Izzy Seik who I have met several times was baptized.  She is from Poland but lives here now.  I’ve talked about her before.  She was so excited.  The other was Peter Struthers from Scotland.  He had always been an atheist but the missionaries talked to him and asked him how he knew he was an atheist.  He realized he hadn’t given the possibility there was a God a chance so he began to read the Book of Mormon and listen to the lessons.  He realized that his thinking had been wrong and he was so happy to be baptised.  He shared his testimony at the end of his baptism and he was very solid.  We were thinking the baptism might get postponed but the missionaries pulled through and got everything ready and found a bishopric member who would come preside.  I’m so glad they pushed.  We probably had the biggest crowd there, many non-members who had never been in our church before.  It was a great night.

As we drove home after the baptism I was amazed how many people were outside.  Edinburgh hasn’t had snow in three years and we have at least 10″ by now.  As we drove by the park that is just outside our flat it was filled with people of all ages building snowmen and snow forts.  There were people sitting inside igloos and babies all bundled up.  By now it is 8:00 and yet everyone is out.

Thursday the snow didn’t let up.  It snowed the entire day. The President grounded the mission cars and told us to go straight home after work but we had plans to take Sister Wahlquist and Sister Wu out to dinner.  We told him that and said we would stay close to home so we made a reservation for Zizzis which has parking nearby.  We tromped through a blizzard to get into the restaurant and again to get back to our car.  I gave my boots away a few weeks ago to a refuge drive so they are half way to Greece by now so I’m just traipsing through the shin deep snow in my every day church shoes and no socks of course.  I’m glad I bought these black leggings to wear under my dresses the last few months.  They keep me warm.

After dinner Sister Wahlquist insisted they still needed to go out finding.  I told her President said for all missionaries to stay close to home and stay in if circumstances warranted it.  She said it was too early – (7:00 pm) and they had a lesson at 7:30 in Starbucks over on what we call the holy corner.  As we drove and slid through the slushy streets I was beginning to realize nothing was open.  Pizza Hut was closed, Five Guys was closed and on and on.  I wanted to just take them home but she said no, she wanted to go to the Holy Corner (called this because there is a church on all four corners).  Her lesson had not confirmed so I told her she had to call him and make sure he was really coming and we started driving there.  When we got to Starbucks it was also closed and the only people in this end of town were a little sketchy looking.  I did not feel like I should be letting these two girls out of the car.  I told her this and made her promise me she would stay home if I took them there and I would tell the President that I had made this decision.  She consented, but warily.  Friday morning when I saw the President I told him what I had done and said it is my fault that the girls didn’t stay out.  He said I did exactly as I should and they should have been home.  So all is good. By the time we got home that night there was 10 to 12 inches of snow in our parking lot.  No one shovels it.  We just plowed our way in and took the first parking spot we could slide into.  We had no idea if we would get out the next morning.

Well Friday morning after several attempts, we got out of our parking lot and slid to work.  Every little incline we would come to we would slide.  Luckily the only cars on the road were us and a few work-type vans.  However, the vans were horrible in the snow and we got behind two that were stuck.  We got to the office and the snow was so deep again that I didn’t dare park so we just pulled straight in up to the door.  An hour later Elder Turner who is stuck here on exchanges since there is no transportation, offered to shovel the parking lot.  His companion and both APs are very sick so Elder Turner spent a good part of his day outside shoveling and putting sand down on our driveway and parking lot.  But as I looked out the window I noticed the front tire on my car was totally flat.  So poor Elder Turner changed my tire for me and then carried the snowy, dirty tire right into my office to show me the screw that had embedded itself into my tire.

Friday night we took Elder Bradley and Elder Butler to dinner.  Zizzi’s again on account of the parking.  They were so happy to have a dinner.  They didn’t get any member meals this week.  We went to their flat to pick them up but they were still clear up by the university so we were going to go grab them there but we got stuck in their parking lot and couldn’t move.  So they walked all the way back to us and pushed us out of the parking lot.  Poor guys.  But the rest of the night went well and we had a great time with them.  Elder Butler is from Sandy, Utah.  He replaced Elder Wang as the new zone leader in Edinburgh.  Elder Bradley, I’ve mentioned before but he is from Canada and is our District Leader here.  They were on exchanges together today.

Saturday, due to the cold and snow we just had a day home.  We cleaned and then ran a few errands and went to the grocery store.  Our washing machine quit working this week so we also went to see about buying a new washer.  Our landlord said to just buy a new one and take it out of our rent.  So that was how we spent today.

Well, sorry this post is a bit boring.  I’m a bit bored actually.  But I guess I’ll read or something!!  Have a wonderful week.  Be safe.  I love you.

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