Before I get to the funny compliments and the crazy food, here is some news: Our investigator, Kim Min-jee, is getting baptized on the 11th of February!!!!! Yay!!!! We only met with her twice before she committed to baptism. She is very eager to learn more and to receive baptism. She was referred to us by her aunt and uncle who are members. They came to her first lesson and were such a help. She has such a strong desire to know the truth. We (her included) wanted her to get baptized sooner, but she had surgery on Saturday and can’t get her sutures wet for a month. So, we are waiting until the 11th of February, which is the earliest she can do.
It is such a miracle!!!! It is amazing how the Lord works in our lives and prepared us to receive a testimony of Him and His gospel. This is not “our” baptism, this is most certainly His.
So. I’ve eaten some pretty crazy things in Korea. For example, in the past two weeks, I’ve done something three times that I had never before done: eaten snail soup. They are these little sea snails and they are boiled until the shell is soft. You eat them shell and all. Once I psych myself up and eat the first one, the rest is easy. It is just that first bite. They actually taste better than a lot of other things I’ve eaten. Earlier in the week, the five of us missionaries had a dinner appointment at the home of a husband and wife who are both somewhat recent converts and are both ward missionaries. We had seafood soup. They didn’t like the piece of meat in my bowl, so they took it away and took the meat out. I was okay with this, as most of the meat were fins. However, they then put a large piece of meat in my bowl. It was the chest cavity of a large fish. With all the organs in tact. All of them. And for the most part, I could pick out what they were–that’s how large they were! I didn’t want to eat it, but after I had done my best to pick around the organs, I heard, “Sister Markland, keep eating! Eat!” And so I would eat. And every time I put my spoon down, I would hear it again. There was a platter of meat at my side, that I recognized as pork. I though I would be safe. It wasn’t until after I popped a piece in my mouth that I realized that there was still skin on it. With hair. It was . . . crunchy. To make a long and disgusting story slightly shorter and considerably less disgusting, I threw up in the bushes outside of their apartment. Fun.
Now on to better things! Compliments. I get compliments, usually from strangers, several times a day. The most common one is “you have a beautiful face.” I get that at least once a day. Some of my other favorites are “you have a very tall nose” and this one by two women who were trying to speak English: “You look like a middle-aged woman. No, no, that is a good thing. Like Queen Elizabeth. It’s a compiment.” I was doing my best to look appreciative and to thank them. But I guess that I didn’t do a very good job. So they pulled out their translator: “OH, you look like a woman from the middle-ages. You hair.” Okay, I’ll take that. And then two Sundays ago we were at a dinner appointment and Elder Dok-su Bae, the regional authority, told me that I look like Mona Lisa.
I love Koreans!