We received our first official email from Josh Feb 25, 2013. Excerpts below:
Hey guys! I am so glad you all wrote me I loved reading all of them I miss all of you!!
I read over the stories Grandma and Mam gave me, they're so awesome. My seat on the plane was weird it had no seat in front of mine so I wasn't tempted to watch TV because I couldnt.
So I land in Vancouver and I walk out and two AP's pick me up (assistants to president) and thats when I went to the mission home and met the Tilleman's. They are super nice and he is such an outgoing guy, loving what he is doing. They gave me a packet of stuff like candy and a card that I havent got the chance to send you yet. I will today. So right after that we drove down the street, the assisants and I , and I said are we home? And they lauged and said no we're tracting. So I knocked on my first door that night!! So that night I stayed with them and studied with them in the morning. We woke up at 6 and played basketball with the chinese elders, it was actually pretty sweet.
I met my new compaions in Langely! Brookswood specifially. I walked in and the elders were like can you give Elder Hawkinson a blessing and I was like uhhh i've never done that before and they were like come on. So I did, It was kind of crazy but he feels better now!
My companions are Elder Henery from Ventura California and Elder Hawkinson from Provo of course. They have both been out for a while but they're super nice and sweet. We live in a basement suite. Its actually pretty nice. I got a bed, the other elder likes the couch so I am good with it. I got lots of closet space. We share a washer and dryer with the owners and we have tons of food! The members are super good here.
Its sweet here you dont have to wear a suit that much just a white shirt and rain coat because it is always raining and cloudy. Seriously, and a bit depressing. I heard about the skatepark, I havent seen it yet. But it sucks because the field next to our place has a giant dirt jump course with like drops and jumps, gaps and features its super sick. I'll try and get a picture by it. I havent even taken any, I was going to send you one but the computer I am using sucks, I am at the local library.
Mission life is actually going really well though I have taught Less actives and members all the dinner appointments are really good. Ive already met alot of people and missioanrys because of exchanges. Almost all of them are from the states. Studies in the morning are actually good and go by so fast, I am loving it my testimony is growing so much already. Everyday is better and gets faster and faster. First couple of days were really slow but it doesn't feel really weird still.
I haven't met anyone with similar hobbies which kind of sucks, but i will. Sunday was a bit weird I don't think I have said the word visa so many times, I have to explain it to everyone. I did meet people who know the colemans and beltrans through!! I think sis colemans brother in law maybe, small world.
I wonder how Spencers doing and if I will see him. I might get transfered in a week and a half but who knows. I am curious about my visa too. It feels weird to be called Elder and call everyone elder and you always have to be by each other I, not use to it haha. Im sure spence will love it ahah. I get to go on the copmputer every monday for an hour so I guess its good. Dad you did a good job on the blog! My companions and I are going to play Hockey today with other elders in the gym so it should be sweet> Oh the temple is by me! I need to take some pictures by it.
I also went street contacting which was a bit scary, you just have to talk to everyone, Ive met some odd balls by the bus stop. Wow I have alot to say I wish I could talk to you on the phone or more time but this is still good. I miss you guys alot I try not to think about it, the Church is true!! Hopefully this week isn't as weird.
Ps. Ill write some letters!