This week was the week of Grave Sweeping.
I don't know if I wrote about it last year. When a family member dies, they find a gravesite for lease, and bury them there. Once a year (April 4th, because the characters for "4" and "death" sound similar), they will go back to their ancestors’ graves, clean them up, and do some ancestor worship (burning paper money, food offerings and incense, etc.). After 10 years, they will dig up the body again and cremate it. To signify an empty grave, upon removal of the body they will strike the headstone with a hammer.
Us missionaries got together in a big group and cleaned all the vacated graves. It was great fun to get together with a lot of friends and pull weeds and sweep ashes. Service rocks! While cleaning one spot I found a leftover piece of human vertebrae. Bone is surprisingly light, almost like a sponge. Perhaps this is because it's ten-year-old bone, but all the same... It freaked some of the sisters out.
You kind of forget how nice it feels to be in normal clothes. We biked to and from the activity in a t-shirt and jeans. And everyone treated us so much nicer! But at the same time, I felt so bad. Aren't you supposed to bike around in a shirt and tie?
On the way back Elder Hintze ran into a parked car. Poor guy, his ego was pretty smashed. We were the first to leave, and all the missionaries came riding by in a big bicycle gang, and they all looked at him and the car with the blaring alarm in confusion as they passed. The owners came out and pardoned the mistake, and we even almost set up a time to meet with them! Moral of the story: if you want to find new investigators, just run into parked cars.
Highlight of my week: President Blickenstaff duggied for us. Check the mission blog. Check it.
I'm outta time!!! Love you all!