Saturday, February 11, 2012

Bible Belt, here I come!

So I opened my mission call Thursday and I am going to North Carolina!

I'll be completely honest, at first, I just kind of sat there going "Huh?" thinking all these kind of stupid things like, "Dang, I'm not learning a language" or "but I have first cousins and one of my best friends from undergrad lives there?!" or "why am I going somewhere so close to where I've visited before (the DC area/suburbs)?"

But a few minutes later, and after I saw the collective relief of my parents that I didn't get sent to somewhere destitute and dangerous in the Amazon or Finland where there is 4 hours of sunlight a day for months on end, I started realizing that this is the best place for me!

My mom's first reaction was "It's civilization! They have a WHOLE FOODS!!"

Sure, it's not "foreign-sexy-cool" but it's not as if my strict, to the hour 6:30am-10:30pm schedule allows for much, if any, leisure or tourist time. Plus, from what I've heard, the South IS a foreign culture to a Californian or a Northeasterner!

My brother went to Southern France and he has mixed feelings about his experience...I think he's even a little jealous I am going somewhere where people already believe in God and are kind. Indeed, my plight could be worse: I wouldn't want to be tasked with teaching existential Euros about morals (HA)! I have the rest of my life to travel!

Then I think about Asia and how insane those languages are and how potentially frustrated I could become, sitting in some little apartment somewhere with only one other person (my "companion" who I am with 24/7) with whom to hang out.

I remember I flew through Charlotte earlier this year and there was a lady in the airport restroom wiping down the long sink after everyone's use and smiling, bidding everyone a nice day as they exited. I was caught way off guard!

There will be unique challenges in the Bible Belt, as only I can imagine... I've never dealt with Evangelicals, so that will be interesting...yikes! But I also hope I get to be in some soulful congregations. I grew up singing MoTown and I'm all about a peppier church experience!

Anyways, I'm really excited, leave at the beginning of May. Another plus is that I don't have to be in the MTC ("Missionary Training Center") for very long. I've heard it's a great experience, but again, I don't know if I'd want to be there for 3 months. But who knows? Maybe I'll end up missing it.

ALSO, my mission has a theme song! Haha! This has been on REPEAT:


Rica said...

You've got a great attitude about this. It's like you and I talked about the other're sent where you're needed, and with this election cycle and people's feelings about Mitt Romney, who better to give people a personal experience with the LDS faith?

So excited for you...and I'm already starting to plan care packages and a Charlotte visit. Seriously...I smile every time I think about this news! You're going to be a great missionary!

austin said...

It's going to be such an awesome mission, you're going to love it, and you're going to do so much good! Congrats again!

T.RIPPY said...

AMEN to everything that’s been said above. So stoked for you “Sisteeeah” (Phil Going voice). Truly, I am so so excited and happy for you! You will be on beyond fantastic.

Alexandra said...

Erica- absolutely. Like we discussed (predicted?!) there's still a lot of misinformation widely believed by many, I really think that's a huge reason.
Biggins- thanks for the support. Your G+ shares are another big reason why I'm going. So thought provoking! Loved the Mormon midrashim.
Grippy- oh "pfiiiil" that sweet guy ... Im afraid im to blame for our poking fun, was only after you guys, my mom, sisters, and Daryl started coercing my impersonation. I'm terrible...what legends, 'pheeel and marthsha'.

Katie said...

I have only been to the southern part of North Carolina (as in, close to the Georgia boarder, not as in southern culture), but it is absolutely beautiful. As awesome as it would be to learn a language, I hear that it is easier and faster to learn how to teach in your native language. Congratulations on your call!

paige said...

oh congratualtions alex! you are going to be amazing! my dad went on his mission to north carolina too and he loved it. i suppose that was 30 years ago, but i'm sure you'll love it too. i'm so happy for you!