I know my title starts with "When in ROME"... but we will be starting in Paris! Because that is where my parents picked me up ;)
When in Paris.
After the greatly anticipated “parent pickup” at the mission office, we grabbed a taxi and headed to the apartment to make a change of clothes before hitting the town. I wasn’t sure what my parents meant by “change of clothes” … Why would I need to change clothes? This was my most comfortable dress! And “hitting the town” … we must be going proselyting!
My family soon realized that their missionary daughter was still very much a missionary. Lol. She didn’t have a single pair of jeans in either of her two, large, 50 pound suitcases, AND she couldn’t go longer than 30 seconds without telling a mission story. It was an adjusting period ;)…
“Change of plans!” shouts mom. “We are going SHOPPING!!!”
So, we loaded ourselves back into the taxi and “hit the town!” … Well, we hit the mall ;)
My dad and little brother were great sports. While I tried on a hundred pair of jeans, and they “ooo-ed and aww-ed” and told me dad-jokes to keep my mind off the extra 30 pounds of sister missionary that I was trying to pull my pants over. HAHA. (insert laughing/crying emoji). Don’t worry… what I didn’t know then, that I know now… It MELTS off!
Our shopping trip was pretty successful. It was a miracle in itself that I found some pants that fit, haha! But the greatest miracle was while we were standing at the cash register, the sweet girl looked at me and said in French as she read my missionary badge, “Sœur! That’s French!” I told her it was a title that we use in the church because we believe we are all brothers and sisters and that God is our Father. Then she smiled and said, “Wow! Where can I learn more?!” And she wrote her contact on the back of my receipt and asked if I would please give it to the missionaries and ask them to call her as soon as possible :)
Miracles Happen!!!...Even in PARIS!
When in Vienna.
Our first day in Vienna, we were sold tickets by a very convincing Dutch salesman dressed up in a costume on the street. These tickets were very expensive, and were supposedly for an Easter weekend orchestra, ballet, and opera in the oldest opera house in Vienna! We were all very excited. The four of us felt like we had really scored a deal! That is, until we showed up at our destination. It was a little square opera house with about 400 seats and only 7 chairs for the “orchestra” and about 10sqft of hard wood floor for the “ballet”. My dad and I looked at each other with the “you have got to be kidding me…” look on our faces. We were almost certain that this little recital was NOT going to be worth our time.
Well folks… the moment that 7-man-orchestra sat down and started playing… our jaws hit the floor, we picked up a foot, and shoved it right in our mouths, where it belonged!! They were phenomenal. The music that filled the room was absolute perfection, and the spirit that accompanied it was amazing. It was truly an Easter Miracle :)
When in Prague.
First off, Prague is marvelous. For those of you planning Europe trips in the near, or distant, future… Put Prague on your list of “MUST SEES!” Plus, miracles happen in Prague ;). I have a few good friends from high school who are currently serving as missionaries in Prague and we had fun feeding them and having them take us around to see a few fun sites before we left to our next destination. We also enjoyed joining them for a little metro contacting! Determined to find someone who spoke French, I hit the isles with my “French detector” turned on high. I didn’t find any French speakers, but I did find an English-speaking family! Although I only got to talk to them for one quick stop, it felt nice to be a proselyting missionary again :)
I guess that means miracles happen in Prague too :).
When in Rome. Part ONE. Free Dessert!
For those of you who follow my mom on Facebook, you probably heard the story of the Italian waiter that was a little infatuated with me and seemed to only be catering to my side of the table… okay, maybe he was only catering to me. But we all got food in the end! And free dessert!! ;) Though even better than the dessert, was when we asked for our third refill on the water and he stopped, looked strangely at us, and said… “Why Water? Why not wine? Are you muslim?” So, we had a great little conversation about our beliefs, gave him the church website, and he said with excitement, “Thank you! I promise will read the entire thing as soon as I get off work!”
When in Rome. Part TWO: The Juice Box Food Tour.
Our final night in Rome was spent walking around to different restaurants with a food tour group and tasting lots of yummy foods and…wines? Well, we don’t drink wine. So instead, they brought us JUICE-BOXES! Hahaha. Oh boy, we sure got a kick out of that! Everyone with their fancy red and white authentic Italian wines and classy glasses, offering up a toast to our little cardboard juice-boxes. Haha! It gave us the perfect opportunity to do missionary work because they ALL wanted an explanation. Why in the world did these crazies come all the way to Rome to drink children’s juice from a little paper box!? So, we told them all about my mission, my parents picking me up, and the Paris Temple!
So, whether in Rome, Paris, Prague, Vienna, or St. George… Miracles Happen!
Until Next Week,
For more miracles, adventures, and updates on my blog, follow me on my NEW Instagram @traciewyson
I feel very honored to have had the opportunity to serve as a full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the France, Paris Mission.