Sunday, December 20, 2015


Well fam, it looks like they transfered me up to Chiang Rai! Way up in the north, the farthest place from Bangkok in the whole mission [13 hours away]. Also the coldest hahahaha, almost like coming home because I can see my breath in the morning! It is so beautiful here! 

The Work: 
My new companion is Elder Ethan Howard from Lehi, Utah and he IS SUCH A STUD. Just a solid missionary who loves being obedient, knows how to have fun, and absoutely loves the Lord and Thailand with all of his heart. Yeah - you bet it is going to be a killer 7 weeks with this guy. We get along great! He also works out like an hour every morning and every night, so we will see if I can catch up. Goal number one: try to keep up with my comp while running so I don't collapse with fatigue. Also... we ride bikes here. 

Pretty sure I haven't ridden a bike in a solid three years and pretty sure the first day riding the bike Elder Howard thought I was a complete imbecile because I forgot how to steer (face palm). I haven't crashed yet, so that is good news hahahaha. 

The members here in Chiang Rai are awesome! Way willing to work with the missionaries. 
So much so, in fact, that yesterday about 25 people gathered together, and we all split up to sing Christmas carols to some less active members. So fun! 

All of the KhonThais were like - why are these white people singing about Jesus at the top of their lungs? Hahahahaha some were so frightened. (Caroling is SO not a thing in Thailand.) I am sure I will get a better feel for our investigators and the members as time goes on, but so far - Chiang Rai is an absolute dream. I thank God every second for sending me here.

(Mom comment: I pulled this image from the internet.)

1. Northern food is my favorite food. The north of Thailand is known for their curry and their amazing rice dishes. Every meal is Christmas. SOOOOO GOOD

2. It reminds me of Southern California in the winter. Everyone is bundled up in full on ski coats, but it is only like 45 degrees outside hahahahaha. The mornings are pretty cold though. Good thing I brought a long sleeve shirt to sleep in.

3. There are lots of small Thailand tribes up here that live in the mountains. You know those people with gold rings that stretch up their necks? Yeah... that is 20 kilos from where our house is. AWESOME 

4. Instead of Bangkok where they ask you, "Wow, isn't it hot today?" Northern people say, "Holy cow, isn't it cold today? WHY ARE YOU IN SHORT SLEEVES ??!!!" 

1. Walking out the door today I had my bike helmet on (luckily) and slammed my head into the bathroom door frame because I was too tall. #whitepeopleinasia

2. We taught an old man the other day. Hahahahah he was trying to read the Book of Mormon through a piece of glass because he forgot his glasses. He is an LA we are working with, and he is kind of crazy. Hahahahahaha it was so funny. I had to end up reading for him because he couldn't decifer the scriptures with a solid piece of glass hahahahahaha. 

3. Caroling with the members was so much fun. But when we just showed up at these people's houses and started singing at the top of our lungs, one lady just sat there in her little hut and was like - "Why are these white elders singing so loud?" and again, "Why are you in short sleeves?" 

4. During studies this morning, we were interrupted by the other elders (Elder Weaver and Elder Thompson) who brought us hot chocolate...only in our freezing room at the border of Thailand would we be able to enjoy hot chocolate hahahahaha. 

Spiritual thought: 
Things change. Whether it is companions, areas, relationships, you move houses, change schools, etc. I keep reminding myself this week that I am in Chiang Rai for a reason. God needs me here. The same thing applies for you wherever you are. God needs you there. And yeah, things may change in Millcreek, Utah - but we need to be able to adjust accordingly and smoothly in order to make the most of our situation. Things that have helped me the most? 
1. Stop and smell the roses
2. Read the scriptures and pray for support
3. Count your blessings every night
Doing these things forces us to understand how blessed we really are. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that He lives. I love you all and cannot wait to see you in a couple days! 

God bless and MERRY CHRISTMAS (cue Santa's voice)
Love always,
Elder Smith-Driggs  

Don't worry these are Less Active members, not girls from home Elder.

P.S. Mom comment:  Because of transfers and Christmas, this week is a little different for internet time for Elder Smith-Driggs.  He emailed us that his P-Day this week will be Friday, Christmas day.  But they were allowed to get online today briefly (their usual P-day) to send/receive a few emails. I do not know if it will be next week before he gets a chance to view emails from this week or if he will get to see them Friday. Just thought I'd pass that on to those of you in correspondence with him.

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