A Day In My {Missionary} Life: November 20th 2002

From my Missionary Journal on November 20, 2002

"Today=windy blustery raindrops
This morning=studies trying to keep warm and a new scarf!
This afternoon= lunch, palestra-ogle-ing...projecto homen [a non-Church affiliated program where we taught a few English classes] (Christmas review; vocab; Rudolph song; Hokey Pokey)...home for hot chocolate (her) & cevada (me)...out again to teach...umbrellas = wind= swoosh! Laughter and shivers...a 1° on the floor of a bedroom [first discussion taught]...correlation w/our fiel Bento [our ward mission leader]...a walk home with contentment...tomorrow is P-day!"

This is exactly how it reads in my journal [the grey text is added for clarification]--I wrote it with green ink. At the end of a long day, I tried to as often as possible--at least write down a few details of our missionary day. I knew that I would not remember the moments and schedules forever, but I could encapsulate some of it, by writing in a journal. I feel strongly about journal writing.*

This Portuguese rural street view was magical in real life and I can still feel it. 

I took 24 rolls of film with me to Portugal. It felt like a lot when I left and I used them sparingly to make them last. We weren't supposed to snap photos everywhere we went (we weren't tourists!) so I only have a small sampling to look at now. My missionary albums seem incredibly sparse, especially with the hundreds-per-month that I take now and store on my computer.

It is too bad I can't have a photo of every place and face...but even still. With a single shot (like the one above), I can close my eyes for a moment and imagine myself there. I can remember the brisk wind on my face and how it felt to skip around puddles of mud. I can remember the feel of cobblestone beneath my shoes and the sunlight arching angelically between the trees...just like that one day shown above.

I can remember large doors, the ominous cathedrals, and  the azulejos (Portuguese blue painted tile)...

Azulejos on a small cathedral...I'm in a matching blue hue

I can remember that day--November 20th, eleven years ago (I can remember, because my journal can refresh my memory). I remember that day was my first experience with my umbrella flying inside out--swoosh! I thought that only happened in cartoons! I laughed so hard. With time, I became quite skilled at tilting my umbrella (though I went through several) toward the wind to avoid such a thing.

On a bridge, in the rain. Coat, gloves, scarf, and a blown out umbrella. Still smiling.

I heard someone say this past Sunday that they take a day off of work every year on a certain date to commemorate the last?first? day of their missionary service years ago. He said he would take his missionary journals and go somewhere quiet all day long to read and to remember. 

I loved that. I think there are many experiences that we have in our journey that are for our enrichment and growth. If we take time to remember them, they can enhance our lives even many years down the road.

*I have posted about journal writing before. Two offerings:  HERE -J is for Journal and HERE-Thankful Thurs 10.08.09.  It is important! Write/type/blog!

Every day in November!  NaBloPoMo: National Blog Posting Month. Write a post on your blog every day in November. For the 3rd year, I've decided to tackle this challenge & enjoy the opportunity to switch to writing mode. Want to join me? Leave your blog link in the comments so I can follow you too!

1 comment:

Jamie said...

You just made me homesick for Portugal so much!! I miss it with all my heart!!