Saturday, March 14, 2015


We just heard from one of our Russian friends that Ryan Gardner is getting transferred to Angarsk, Russia. This is about 2600 miles away from his current assignment in Nakhodka, Russia.
Angarsk looks quite a bit colder. Good thing he loves it! Surprising for a kid from Phoenix. Russia is going to make a man out of him.

How is Spring Break?  Dad, don’t feel bad.  I don't get a spring break either, if that makes you feel any better:) The legislature sounds like a fun but very busy place to be. I have told a few people that my Dad is a lobbyist and people think it is pretty cool. If only they knew that you are part of the best lobbying firm in Arizona!  Do you know where you rank on the National scale of lobbyists?

I am very jealous that you got to go to Thatcher to see the PV/EAC game and go to Casa Manana! That sounds like such a blast. I miss Mexican food. We only have the beans and rice here that we make ourselves. It just isn't the same.

I will go to South Korea for my Visa renewal before the 25th of this month.  Not too sure but that is the last possible day I can go. I am hoping to try some kimchi when I go.

Over here we face opposition but I wouldn't want it any other way. It must needs be that there is opposition in all things, right? The people are sweet when they are happy, but definitely sour when they are upset. Hard on the outside and soft on the inside is a good way to describe it. Everyone bundles up, pulls their hats down low on their eyes, and they refuse to smile. It is just what you do when you are on the street. It is weird to talk to people and just greet them for the sake of saying hello. We definitely stand out as weirdos when we go talk to everyone we possibly can on the street.

We were on the street the other night when we tried talking to a man. We said hello and that we were here as missionaries. He stopped to look at us, but then a woman walked up. She was 15 feet away or so and loudly shouted to us "HELLOOO LITTLE BOYSSS" We said hello to her, just hoping she wouldn't be a mean lady. She came up to the man, with whom we wanted to talk, and put her arm around him saying "Come with me you don’t need to talk with these little boys."  We kept going, just ignoring that lady, it happens quite often. Then we realized that we had to head on home soon, so we went to the bus stop. We saw one of our friends there, he is a preacher for another church. He is a way cool guy. Then another one of our preacher friends came up and it was a big group of us, about 8 or so, all religious people talking about the church meeting they just had. Turns out they just got out of their church meeting.

After a few minutes, guess who came up! That lady! Her name is Yulia. She was a part of that church group and when she was around her friends she was nice to us. As we got on the bus together I was just chatting with the guys, and I made a comment about Yulia.  I said "Yeah we actually saw Yulia here a few minutes ago. We saw her on the street!" That made Yulia look over to me and I turned to her asking "Do you want to tell them what you did to us, or should I just do it?" She got really ashamed and seemed kinda sad. Haha I just dropped it and didn't tell the rest of the people how she was kinda mean.   I didn't want to hurt her feelings I just wanted to mess with her.  Now whenever we see her on the street we ask her how she is doing and how her church meetings were. She actually plays guitar for their church meetings and she is a good friend now:) Just gotta keep loving people even if they act silly sometimes. 

 Some of the keys to success in my opinion would be smiling. We met a guy on the street the other day, and he just right away started yelling at us. He hates Americans. He went off for a few minutes then I turned to him and asked him where he is from. He said Nakhodka. I asked him where I am from. He said America. I asked him how he knew, and he said he just assumed. He then started asking me where I was from but I refused to answer him. I just said "No, you lost your chance. I won’t tell you." He just laughed, shook my hand and we went away. We always say "Hi" to him and smile at him when we see him on the street. It is important to stay calm and not yell back at these people. They are fun, just gotta take a chance on them, show them love and don’t give up.

I am so grateful for the chance to be here in Russia! Great country, wonderful people and it is always an adventure! Stay frosty:)

Elder Gardner

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