This week was cool. I went to my first Zone conference, where we review our goals and find ways to be better missionaries. It was really good. Mission Presidents attend every ZoKo (as we call it), so I got to see President Ninnow again.
I also went on my first Golden Austausch on Saturday. Elder Miller and I went to do service at Sister Gross' house (a recently baptised elderly lady). When we got there, we found she had brought a friend, who was interested to hear our message. We found out she had heard a lot of bad things about us, but that didn't make sense since our church helped Sister Gross quit smoking, and we were going to help Sister Gross with her garden. It reminded me of a similar situation that Paul encountered in Acts 28 with some Jewish leaders. They said: "But we desire to hear of thee what thou thinkest: for as concerning this sect, we know that every where it is spoken against." This lady was very open with us, and despite the fact that were both Goldens, we managed to teach her the first discussion (with the help of Sister Gross) and set up a return appointment. We also offered to help her enter the "quit smoking in 7 days" program that the Wuppertal Elders were trying. She loved the idea. This experience was a testimony to me that God qualifies the weak and simple for missionary work and that the gospel is a principle based on faith and not necessarily on a large vocabulary.
In other news, I got cussed at for the first time. I had no idea what the guy was saying, and he wasn't really yelling, so it wasn't that bad. My comp. told me afterwards that he said some bad words, and some bad things about our church, the Book of Mormon, and Joseph Smith. Oh well.
We are going to check out the Solingen knife shop today. That should be interesting.
As far as food here goes, people eat a lot less meat. For that I am grateful. In fact, the first member meal I had a few weeks ago was completely vegetarian. It was cool. I think I will be eating less meat here than I did at BYU.
They do have this Turkish thing here that is super good. It's about as popular as Hamburgers in the US. It's called Dönner (pronounced dooner). It is similar to mom's fallafel wraps, but it has 3 sauces in it, and it is made out of lamb or chicken (your choice) instead of breaded vegetarian stuff.. They put in vegetables, sauce, and saurkraut, and then wrap it in some Turkish bread.
I will take some pictures when I get one today (according to all of the elders I have met, the best dooner shop is right around the corner from where I live).
There are also a lot more crazy people here than the US. Schizzophrenics are fairly common. Germany has really good medicine research, and is a healthier country in general (minus the smoking) than the US (because medicine is expensive, people have incentive to stay healthy- and the food is fresher), but many people are not mentally well. It is kind of sad to see. I think part of it has to do with the alcohol and drug culture that has control over people. It's scary how many are afflicted with it.
Thankfully the Atonement is there to help these people, and most of the members here have overcome at least one WOW addiction.
That's all for now!