First week in Pécs and things are already going great. First off it was pretty hard leaving Buda. Mostly because of the people. I mean, the city was great, but it's the people that really make something special. I made a lot of great relationships, but I'm glad to be in such an amazing area now!! Seriously, I'm already in love with Pécs. So first off we had about a 3 hour train ride down here, because it's in the very bottom of Hungary, and then my companion, Elder Barbour, and I had to get our keys and phone and all the stuff from the other Elders, because neither of us had been in this city before, so we kind of have no idea what we're doing. But the first walk through the city was gorgeous. Seriously, it looks super European with coble stone everywhere it's amazing. Unfortunately, our apartment isn't the most luxurious. It's pretty crappy actually. We couldn't get the heater working for the first couple days (luckily, its going now, so no worries there) and the kitchen and bathroom are just straight up nasty. It's good enough though and we haven't seen any rats or bugs so far. No complaints.
This place is seriously amazing though. We walked around and started talking to people about our English class and handing out fliers, and seriously, every single person accepted a flier!!! I couldn't believe it. In Budapest, everyone is always in a hurry and you can't stop them for anything, but out here, everyone is just relaxed and are way more willing to stop and talk for a minute. I really already love it out here so much. We've already made some good friends from the ward too. Everyone was all pretty accepting, and next week, we have 3 dinner appointments with members, so it seems like they feed us pretty well out here too! Didn't get that in Budapest either.
My Dad asked about the language and stuff, and I will say that things are still getting better, but still have a long way to go. Elder Barbour is one of the best speakers in the mission, so I have already learned a lot from him, but it's still difficult. I can pretty much have conversations and talk with people no problem, but there are still lots of times that I don't understand what they say. And on that note, I got to introduce myself in church, so that was interesting. It's a little harder speaking the language with a microphone in front of you, but I think I did alright. Another thing, is that there is a zöldi (greenie or someone who is brand new) in my area, so I can really see how much better I actually am in the language than I used to be. Seriously, you can't really see the progress day by day, so it's nice to think back to how much I used to suck.
The work is really going great too. We made a lot of phone calls and have found a lot of new people. Probably the best part of the week, was when we were making a ton of calls to people on the phone, and there was one guy named Gangsta Mate. When we called him, he asked if we could meet right then, so we jumped on a bus and went out probably 15 minutes. He met us out there and said he wanted us to go visit a family that is going through a hard time that he thinks we can help. We then proceeded to go to one of the most torn down, trashiest houses I've probably ever seen in my life. It's this gypsie family (they are heavily discriminated against here in Hungary) with a single Mom and Grandma raising four or five children. It was really humbling for me to see conditions that were so much worse than anything I had ever experienced, and also cool to see that this random guy we never met before, trusted us that we could help this family. We had a good talk with all of them, and will get to go back some time this week. It really helps to get a reminder every once in a while, why it is I came out here. It's to help people like that who just have no more hope in their lives and can't find the right path to take. I love this work and I'm super grateful for this opportunity to serve. There's a lot more I could say about Pécs because I really love this city, but that's probably enough for this week, so I will just see you all next week. Thanks for all your support!