Monday, June 1, 2009

EPIC Hitchhiking to Namhae

We just arrived at the post office in Sacheon by way of hitchhiking (as usual). What's not usual is that we were picked up by a party bus. Party buses drive people around on tours and are notorious for blasting techno music for the middle-aged Korean women who like do dance and go crazy in the aisle. Weird stuff. This one was empty, but the driver was CRANKING the Asian techno and some weird music videos. It was awesome! Made for a good story to tell other missionaries.

The highlight of this week was an EPIC, 7 hour hitchhiking extravaganza all over our area, and to the extreme Western part of our area that borders the Taejon mission. We started at noon where we usually hitchhike, said a prayer, and went off. We saw beautiful scenery as we made our way across a dramatic bridge north of Samcheonpo and moved West into the mountains of Hadong, an area for which we had no maps in our house! Very dramatic and beautiful country. Some of the mountain roads reminded me of Washington State. After hours of asking community information centers about some of our less active members out there (and dealing with a Presbyterian lady who didn't like our church), we made our way down to the backside of the big island Namhae. We went to a Coast Guard station and they drove us to another community center. Then we walked across the bridge and on to Namhae itself. I felt like someone should be welcoming us to Jurassic Park or something. Namhae has BEAUTIFUL green mountains and great views. We hitchhiked to the main city of Namhae-eup, where we asked the community center people about 20ish members who live on Namhae. After some prodding, they agreed to tell us if the people were still living at the addresses we had or not. It helped us clear up our records! We hitchhiked back up through Namhae, over the Samcheonpo bridge, and into Samcheonpo. We were dropped off at the same corner where we had prayed, seven hours earlier. It was seven hours of sweat, frustrating conversations with community centers, and high adventure. We counted later, and calculated that we were picked up by 11 different cars during our journey. Epic.

The rest of the week was filled with appointments that fell through, expectations not met. Disappointing. Bro. Bay (whose wife really really REALLY doesn't like our church) wasn't able to meet with us much this week. We'll see if we can do it next week. We met with a nice Filipino lady named Mylene who wants to meet with us and talk about the gospel. She is very humble and met missionaries about a year ago.

The work is moving along here. I'm loving it! N. Korea is making noise and we're still worried a little bit about evacuation, but not so much. Love you guys! Elder Bocchino

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