Elder Keegan Karsten Brown

Elder Keegan Karsten Brown

Monday, June 29, 2015

Patru Julie - Happy Fourth of July Good People!

My week has been off the wall. 

Tuesday morning at 2:30 p.m., I’m awakened by the elder who sleeps above me (Elder Evans).  He got down from the bunk bed and went to the bathroom.  I knew something was up so I went to check on him and when he came out he was shaking like crazy; shivering to death!  I honestly thought he was going to die.  We sat him down and tried to take his temperature.  Our thermometer wasn’t working, but by my hand I could tell he was burning up.  After a blessing, I sat and tried to convince him to go to the hospital but he refused.  He stopped shaking, but then began to throw up. 

He stayed in bed the next day, but then my comp got kinda sick too!  We took Evans to the hospital Tuesday night at about 8:00 p.m. and remained there till about 10:00.  We then had the missionaries who finished their missions at our place and were up Wednesday morning at 3:30 a.m. to take them to the airport.  At 8:00 Wednesday morning, we knew that my comp had the same illness.  We didn’t take him to the hospital thinking it was the same thing as Evans (food poisoning). But when they both didn’t recover, I took my comp to the hospital. 

Wednesday at 7 p.m. we went to the hospital.  I sat four straight hours in the waiting room and he finally came out - Parasites!  My comp has a big ol' worm in him.

The two sicko’s chilled together sick for most of the weekend and I then went out with the other Elder Brown, as he is the only healthy one around me! 

We also had zone conference on Friday, office staff meeting, an open house on Saturday and two showings of Meet the Mormons. 

Today we celebrated the fourth of July.  My comp felt well enough to come out for a while.  We had soccer, volleyball frisbee, barbeque, watermelon eating contests and other games! I had a stellar time and got to run around. 

This next week we get ready for transfers and meet with President to figure all that crap out. I find out where I’m going to serve my last two transfers and hopefully have some input. 

Sounds like you guys are boring as freak back home, but I wish I could be with you all for the fourth!  Go do something fun and then send me some pics for next week! 

I love and miss you all! 
4th of July - Eagle Socks!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Schimb de Experienta - Exchange of Experience

Solid week Ladies and Gents!

Coming down to the end, I wonder how annoying and repetitive these emails have become for you. 

I had the opportunity to be President’s companion for a day!  I was pretty nervous at first, but once we got through airport security and on the morning flight everything was a little bit smoother.  We had zone training in Cluj and he didn’t think it was necessary to take both me and my companion.  It was fun!   The flight back was incredible because we talked about his relationships with the Apostles and how he knows all of them so well.  Then we talked college football and his life at the U.  He told me about his time at Harvard Business School and he asked me . . . "what do you want to be when you grow up?"  We had some fun and then talked about some mission things.  He then asked me where I wanted to end my mission and I had no idea what to say - It was nuts!  He’s basically letting me decide (pressure)!  He had some nice things to say and I was appreciative of the hours we spent together. 

So back to the conference . . . I taught something that he’s been preaching for the last few weeks.  President was busy doing interviews so I covered for him.  It’s a cool little concept, kind of hard to put into an email, but when you boil it down it goes as follows . . . 

Your life progresses at a decent speed as long as you continue to learn, but the moment you try to teach and serve, your life begins to maximize itself.  Unselfish service and hard work will ultimately lead to you learning more, and at a quicker rate.  The smallest changes can make all the difference.  It only takes 2 degrees or 2 percent to make lasting differences. Example: 

In 1979 a large passenger jet with 257 people on board left New Zealand for a sightseeing flight to Antarctica and back. Unknown to the pilots, however, someone had modified the flight coordinates by a mere two degrees. This error placed the aircraft 28 miles (45 km)to the east of where the pilots assumed they were. As they approached Antarctica, the pilots descended to a lower altitude to give the passengers a better look at the landscape. Although both were experienced pilots, neither had made this particular flight before, and they had no way of knowing that the incorrect coordinates had placed them directly in the path of Mount Erebus, an active volcano that rises from the frozen land scape to a height of more than 12,000 feet (3,700 m).

As the pilots flew onward, the white of the snow and ice covering the volcano blended with the white of the clouds above, making it appear as though they were flying over flat ground. By the time the instruments sounded the warning that the ground was rising fast toward them, it was too late. The airplane crashed into the side of the volcano, killing everyone on board.

It was a terrible tragedy brought on by a minor error—a matter of only a few degrees.

Through years of serving the Lord and in countless interviews, I have learned that the difference between happiness and misery in individuals, in marriages, and families often comes down to an error of only a few degrees. - a matter of a few degrees (Uchtdorf - General Conference, April 2008)

President also shared a story about compound interest and a change of only 2 percent in interest rates . . .  Ultimately, the difference between 5 percent and 7 percent, compounded over 44 years, results in more than double the income ($10,000 = $90,000 @ 5% or $215,000 @ 7%).  Life isn’t about the big changes, but small incremental changes over time. 

As for homecomings, I’m hearing guys my age getting home from their missions and the girls my age are getting married!  I can’t keep up with all that’s going on, but its nuts.  A BIG WELCOME HOME and KILLER JOB to Doug Hintze!  I understand he comes home this week so let him know I miss him.  Let me know who else is getting home . . . Talon Hatch should be soon, then Blair next month and others. 

Remember me? Check out these pics! 

Love you all!
Hanson Brother - Slap Shot

Bunny Ears?!?!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Mai Raman Patru Luni – Four Months to Go!

Good Day Ladies and Gents, 

Welcome June.  It’s sunny in Bucuresti and I’m extremely excited to spend another beautiful summer covering my limbs with slacks, shirts and ties; enjoying the warm sun and sweaty Romanians.  It’s a shame we can’t wear shorts out here. 

This week was incredible!  So much crap went down and we had so much to do. 

Monday was prep day. 

Tuesday we got the new missionaries in and I trained them alone with President Ivory while Elder Allphin trained the trainers.  The new guys are both out of the military.  One went to Georgetown and the other was accepted to Princeton. . . . So, I was feeling pretty stellar with my one class background at on-line SLCC!   I’m so edumaceted!  We also went on a 3 mile run that day which my body immediately reminded me that it’s not used to such exercise. 

Wednesday started with another run, but luckily we had worn President out a little bit so it went a little slower.  We did some more training with all the new people.  Tuesday and Wednesday had a combined total of around 13-15 hours in meetings.  I fell asleep in one of the last meetings while president was talking and I was supposed to be conducting the meeting . . . it went great! 

This weekend we had District Conference here in Bucuresti with a guest from the Area 70.  Elder Reina from Spain was the visitor.  I had the privilege (working on positivity) of translating for him.  Now he spoke in Spanish, which was then translated into Romanian, and I then translated into English for those who don’t speak Romanian.  It may or may or may not have been the same talk that he was giving, but I think it turned out okay.  I really hate translating, but it helps my Romanian a lot.  We also had the movie premiere of Meet the Mormons here in Bucuresti.  Romanian is one of three European languages that it was translated to, which is a big deal given we have such small numbers in comparison to other countries.  We filled an entire theater with 300 people plus and over 75 of those were investigators.  It was translated really well considering the District President here is a former actor.  His name is Alin Constantinescu and was in films like Anaconda 3. He got a team of non-member voice actors and paid them to translate and be the voices for the actors.  They did a killer job! 

I’m having fun, recovering from a head cold . . . eating lots of fast food . . . enjoying the sun. 

Sorry, I forgot my card reader so no pictures for today!  

I love and miss you guys,