Monday, June 22, 2009

sunday morning - back to LA

sunday was amazing.

i was able to go back to santa monica 2nd ward, where i attended church as a missionary for 6 months and see some of the people that i had come to love so much. 

the santa monica 2nd ward building

derek came with me and it was so fun for me to introduce him to all of these people. it was so good to see them all again. most people couldn't remember where they knew me from, and many of them thought we had been friends in college. i found it funny. 

we left after sunday school to rush to the spanish ward (barrio tercero) before everyone went home...

luckily, i was wrong about the meeting times, and we got there just as everyone was  going to class! it was SO awesome to see these people. i realized that my spanish was horrible and i need to basically re-learn it. it was lucky derek was there with his amazing spanish to translate for me. 

i was talking to people and having a lovely time, when out of the corner of my eye, i saw someone that i really didn't expect to see. jose castellanos was a man that i had met tracting in his apartment building. we taught him somehow (in spanish) and he was baptized.

jose and i 

i had heard that he had moved, maybe even back to honduras, and i had no contact information. i didn't think i would ever see him again. i ran to him and gave him a big hug and through happy tears tried to explain how surprised i was to see him. i had to turn to derek, and explain it all to him and he was kind enough to explain things to jose.

this is rebekah. she would come with us for hours at a time (she's only 17) and would help us with our spanish. she's such a sweetheart. 

gloria was studying to get her citizenship when i was there, and she finally got it! Teresa spoke no english a year and a half ago, and she totally surprised me when she said "it's so good to see you!" in perfect english with no accent! i'm so proud of both of them. 

gloria & teresa


after church we went over to koorosh's house for a persian feast of a lunch. it was amazing. his dad, mehdi, made us kabobs, rice (persian-style tadig!) stews and salad. 

this is tadig (ta-DEEG). they cook the rice till it's hard and golden-brown on the bottom, and then they serve it upside-down. you put stew on top of it to soften it up but it's still pretty hard. i broke a fork on it once. 

kathy (koorosh's sister - i love her SO much!) and koorosh
(also, please note the delicious kabobs in the foreground)

we ate a lot, and it made us rather sleepy.

One of my favorite things about my time in LA was sitting in this persian family's home right after the iranian election had happened. it was so interesting to sit there with them watching the news and the footage of tehran, where they lived, asking them questions, and hearing their opinions. it was especially interesting because koorosh was a little kid during the revolution in 1979 and remembers all sorts of interesting things about life in Iran, pre- and post-revolution. they're not too happy about the election. 


Kathy and I (her english is getting so good too) 

me and the khirabadi family (mehdi, kathy, koorosh) we passed the rest of out time looking at pictures from koorosh's childhood in iran and from his first years in america, which was so funny, and then headed off to dinner. 


we had dinner with brooke and kelly (the friends that so kindly took my into their home during my stay in LA).

they had their friends brandon and dave over, and we had such a fun night. we ate tacos and key lime pie, played this game called sequence, listened to cheesey love songs, and laughed a ton. i love these girls so much!

that night, i drove derek back home to san diego. we stopped at his parents house to pick something up, got talking and discovered that derek's dad and my step-dad were roommates in college! what in the world are the chances? i had such a fun weekend, and i was so glad derek came so i could have someone to reminisce about it all with. 

derek and i. very full. very tired. very happy. 



  1. oh i love koorosh. i wish i could see him again. i need to meet derek. i'm so glad i went to pick you up in la. that was so fun.

  2. I'm glad we went to pick you up too. It made me miss all these people to see so many photos.
    Where is a photo of Farnoosh?