I Got this email of questions from grandma and grandpa Bushman I thought it might be nice for the blog.
If you have space, we’d be interested to know –
How many branches or wards in your city?
There is one branch in Irkutsk.
How many members usually attend your branch/ward?
We have anywhere from 45 to 55 members each week on Sunday.
How many Melchizedek priesthood holders attend your branch/ward?
There are about 10-15 active or semi-active Melchizedek priesthood holders.
What is the level of commitment/energy of the bishopric or branch presidency?
Our branch president and the second counselor are wonderful they put in a lot of effort into leading the branch and we are blessed to have them.
How many missionaries serve in your city?
There are 8 missionaries including the senior couple
How many lessons do you teach a week?
The standard of excellence for lessons a week is 15 but there was a change in the "definition" of what a lesson is which made them harder to have, so we have had around 10 the past couple weeks.
Do you know the ratio of new investigators to baptisms in your mission? (In our mission, it is 16:1. That is, for every 16 investigators, we reap one baptism.)
I do not know that ratio but I know that the ratio of baptismal dates to actual baptsims is 7 to 1.
You said you walk a lot. Do you have at least two pairs of boots to wear, so you can trade them off each day?
I have two pairs of boots but only one pair of insoles and I have been being lazy and not switching every day.
So something great to get in a package would be just a bunch of the cheese packets out of Kraft macaroni and cheese. Just need that cheese sauce. And then maybe like sour patch kids watermelon things or candy corn, you know whatever. Oh and there's no licorice here in Russia. I have searched, there is no licorice in Siberia. Its sad.
Talking to Russian people they have all said it is super warm here for this time of the year. But the wind, the wind never stops. So this week was fun. We did service for a lady who was moving apartments and we were taking the old wallpaper off the walls. There were like 14 layers of it and as you took the last layer off cockroaches fell out of the walls onto you, yay! Elder Hasebi and I have been experimenting a lot with eating different food. We tried to make pancakes a couple days ago but we didn't have any buttermilk. So it said to substitute it with regular milk and Vinegar. Well when Elder Hasebi was adding the vinegar he noticed that it said 70% concentrate, danger of death if not diluted. So that was a bad sign. Long story short the pancakes just tasted like straight vinegar. But we made chocolate syrup to put on them which was really good so I still ate 3. I am kind of proud of us we took a vanilla syrup recipe which was gross and figured out how to make delicious cinnamon and chocolate syrup.
There is a recent convert named Peter who is like 65 and a little crazy and just kinda weird. Well we visited him and a friend in a hospital (more of a nursing home) and it was super cold outside as we were walking there, but Peter just has a shirt on with a coat unzipped and a beannie pretty much just sitting on top of his head. We asked Peter aren't you cold? and he says of course not I'm wearing a coat, and then chuckles. There was this older lady on the other bed in the room in the hospital. Her phone started ringing and at about the 5th ring she realized it was hers, picked it up, held it in front of her face about a foot away, and yelled "allo? allo?" while it is still ringing. It was so funny we both started busting up laughing. Then Peter went to help her out and she was so amazed that she was actually talking to someone over the phone. Old Russian people are the best.