San Francisco, a New Companion, and a Transfer Already?!
On Tuesday, June 4, 2013 Elder Dayton was sent to San Francisco to meet with the French Consulate, to finalize his Visa paperwork. That was the original date he was supposed to travel to the West Indies...but I guess there was no group to send him to San Francisco with. So he went there with the Elders that he would've entered the MTC with, had he not reported a week early and been placed in the ADL Zone. This is his report of the day....
"San Francisco was fun! I traveled with Elder Wade (Detroit), Elder Christensen (Riverton), Elder Drennan (Morgan), and Elder Johnston (Arkansas). They're all going to the West Indies French-speaking. I'm excited to join them! They're fun! We went to the consulate in downtown SF. On the 5th floor of a bank was this tiny little boring room. We went up one by one where they took our papers, messed around on their computers, scanned our fingers, took our picture, then they told us to sit down. It took about 5 minutes each... A lot of money was spent for those short moments in the French consulate! After, we went down to Pier 39 and walked around for a while. We had about 2 or 3 hours before we needed to be back to the airport, so we browsed around for a while. I was the only one who had ever/recently been there, so I kind of led the way. (I'm grateful that we went last summer!) It was fun to be back there again! We got several shoutouts from the street like, "Look! It's the missionaries!" Most of the people that talked to us were from Utah, but it's kind of expected. It was weird for us all to be out in public as missionaries. All of us were kind of overwhelmed, and we were to scared to really talk to anyone about the gospel. I wish we would have been a little more bold while we were there..."
The handsome Elder Dayton in San Francisco.
|Some soon-to-be French West Indies Elders, with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background.|
We looked at shops, took pictures, went to Ghirardelli square, and then just ate at Chipotle. It was pretty good! We were all super tired and so we got bored kinda fast. We called the driver a little early and got on our way to the airport. As soon as we got in the van, we passed out! We were pretty exhausted from waking up so early and traveling around all day. On the way home, we traded seats with a couple so that they could sit by each other on the plane. I sat by a guy from Telluride, CO. So I talked to him about skiing for a little bit, but he was really quiet, and I was nervous to bring up the gospel. Then we both fell asleep. I woke up after a while and started studying French. When he woke up I asked him where he was coming from, and he was in Thailand and Cambodia on a long climbing trip! He was a really cool guy! Probably in his mid twenties, with a gnarly beard! He had already been traveling home for like 30 hours at that point, so he was super tired. I finally brought up my mission and how I was going to the West Indies. He knew a little about missionary work and said that he had a friend in high school that decided to "take that path." He automatically assumed that after my mission I would go to BYU... Haha I don't know why. I thought it was kind of funny though. I was going to give him a pass-along card when we got off the plane, bet he got away from me too fast and I had to find my travel-mates.
|Elder Dayton with his first prospective missionary contact.|
Since I saw on my travel itinerary that my departure date would be July 15th for the West Indies, I kind of had a panic attack. I thought, "Oh no! Not 6 MORE weeks here!" But after talking to the information desk and travel offices they told me not to trust any dates that I see anywhere, and that they'll send me out as soon as my visa gets here! They told me it could be here at the beginning of next week, and they could ship me out 1 or 2 days after I get my visa!
My companion right now is Elder Patey! We actually met him at CTR clothing and talked to him in the end of April! What are the chances that we'd end up being companions in the MTC??!! Haha Elder Squires got transferred to the Tahitian district, and I was the only one left in my district (and room) so I moved to be with Elder Patey. He's been here since the beginning of May. He was supposed to leave on May 14th for Teresina, Brazil, but he's had visa problems. He's been supposed to have gotten reassigned weeks ago, but he just barely got reassigned yesterday! He's going to the New York Utica mission on Tuesday! I'm excited for him, and he's so ready to get out of here. He's only been here 6 weeks, but he was only expecting to be here for two, so it makes sense. I'm gonna miss him a ton! He's one of the coolest guys I've met here at the MTC! I definitely will hang out with him after the mish. He graduated high school a year early, so he's only 18. He's owned several businesses that have all been extremely successful! He's a business genius. He has his car paid off and his home paid off!! Haha he bought a portable schoolhouse in an auction and fixed it up, so he could pretty much live on his own for the rest of his life. He has a ton of property in Midway, where his family lives, and they have a hot spring and stuff. He's just kind of an extreme sports junkie, so he's just a kid that loves to have fun! He's lived for 4 years in Portugal, so he speaks the language fluently. He's traveled all over Europe, and lived in Germany for 3 months for study abroad.
|Elder Dayton with his new companion, Elder Patey...until he leaves too...|
My new district is Elder Patey, Cameron (from AF, going to Montreal French-speaking), Jenkins (from Florida, going to West Africa French-speaking), and two others. The French guys are way awesome! I got to be a "member" in one of their lessons, and it was so hard. Elder Jenkins did most of the talking. I said like two sentences! Haha it was so hard... They've both taken French for 5 and 6 years in high school. They leave next week, so I'm gonna miss them. Hopefully I don't leave much longer after that, because all of my good friends from my zone are leaving me!