So, I went to my last leadership council this week. It was good, but it felt weird giving my last testimony. I managed to finish right before I started crying. Seeing that I am the only Sister Training Leader, it was kind of weird being in a bus with just Elders (all of the district and zone leaders in our zone).
At one point, the Elders wanted to help one of our zone leaders who will be leaving with me in March, practice asking girls out on dates, so they started a few role plays. Well, the first Elder who played the girl ended up telling Elder Olsen that his name was Ashley. I don't think he knew that was my name though, seeing that his companion's girlfriend's name is Ashley, but it was kind of awkward.
Well, turns out that I received my Christmas package just in time to use sandals my last month here in Brazil. I received packages from the aunties and from Senhor Dias (Elder Dyer's Brazilian investigator). So, the first day I got back from leadership council, I put my sandals on and tried them out.
Mossoró is actually a really dry area that often suffers from lack of water, but as Sister Acosta, my mission mother, said when I first got to Sousa, I seem to bring rain with me wherever I go. It started raining. It was truly a blessing that I had received sandals, seeing that after I walked holes into my rubber Crocs, I had gone back to using my traditional leather shoes (they don't mix too well with water).
Well, it started raining during lunch at the Young Woman's President's house. Her daughter took a bath in rain water just for fun, but it ended up slowing down a bit after lunch. We ended up going to a member's house to visit right before it started raining again. And this time it was raining hard! There was a huge flood down the street, so we stuck around in the member's house until it stopped.
After the rain finished, we went out again. The floods were still going but it wasn't too bad. Ever since I got to Brazil, I've noticed that every time it rains hard, everyone is out on the street with brooms and sweeping the water down the road. I never understood why until this week.
As Sister Lopes and I were walking down the street we saw a woman who was mopping water down the street as well as the driveway of a house. Without thinking, I quickly asked her if she wanted some help. She then told us that her neighbor’s house had flooded and she was trying to help. When we looked into the house, we saw that the floor was covered in mud and water. Without even stopping to ask permission, I immediately ran into the house threw my bag on the couch and found the woman, whose name was Maria, trying to sweep the water out. I asked her if she had another broom or rodo (those things you use to sweep liquid) and she quickly gave us a couple. And then the work began.
We started sweeping and cleaning out the house. I did find a stray toad in one of the rooms. Maria told us that she had never slept during a rainstorm before, but today when the rain started she and her grandson had gone to sleep. Her four-year-old grandson Pedro was sitting on the bed the whole time waiting for us to get the water out. It took a while, but we finally managed to get the house cleaned out.
In the hour or two we were cleaning, a few of Maria's neighbors came to help us, and Maria and her neighbors kept saying. It is just our luck that these two young ladies were here to help. What a blessing! Well, I'm always excited when we find random service projects to do and the Lord puts us in the right places at the right times. :)
Sister Dyer mopping
Sister Lopes mopping
Drawings by a missionary colleague of Sister Dyer and Sister Lopes