Cari Amici e Famiglia,
This week we traveled a lot. On Tuesday we had mission leadership council via Skype which was pretty neat but afterwards we went to Fratelli la Bufala which is a nice pizza place where we got some pizzas to go. There were cheaper than in Rome which I was happy to discover. Then we got some gelato and ate it in the lounge area outside on comfy couches under the beautiful autumn sunshine. On the way there we met a guy who wanted to show (off) us some of his English tattoos. I unfortunately had to tell him you don't say "I love the life" but rather "I love life." His expression of unbelief and regret was priceless and a strong testimony builder for me. Also this week we helped a member and his elderly (though by how hard she worked you wouldn't think it) mother harvest some olives in a village in the mountains called Rose. It was cool to learn how to harvest olives by shaking them or beating them out of the trees with a branch shaking machine or some long sticks. They then would fall onto some nets that were laid around the trees. Then you had to pick out some of the sticks and other rubbish that fell out of the trees with the olives before gathering them into sacks to take to the oil pressing machines.
Another day we went to a place called Saracena to visit some members. One of the older guys there had lived in Argentina and was converted there. He became a bishop and was there to see the 1000th stake of the church organized. That city was also very beautiful and as well as being precariously perched on the side of a cliff. On the way back we stopped in a city called Castrovillari where a branch used to exist to buy some stuff at a store that imports goods from around he world.
I got some mike and Ike's, skittles, and some sprees and man were they good. I also found Mountain Dew right next to our house in Cosenza but I am trying not to drink pop so much these days so I haven't gotten some yet. Today we went to get my other pair of church shoes whose soles have been destroyed since my time in Bari from the shoe repair guy. He really loves the fact that we preach the gospel being such young guys who could be doing other things and so he did it for free. He did an amazing job and they look better than they did originally. We also went to visit the castle in old Cosenza but it is closed on Mondays and open every other day of the week. It was a hard hike up there, too. We saw some painting though of a massacre of the the Waldenses who were a group of Protestants (and I think some of my ancestors were in this group) in the Piedmont region of Italy.
Apparently some order was given by the Catholic church in Cosenza to go kill them. Interesting stuff. Besides that the work is going pretty well and we are having some success.