Monday, November 30, 2015

The Last Starfighter - Green Hills, Tennessee

Hello people!

Unfortunately Nick used a Star Wars reference in his last email subject so I had to go with the less well-known alternative. Anyway, do you know what is awesome? If you guessed lasers then you are right,because lasers are awesome. Today was the day we got to go to brother Tolk's lab. It was crazy. He took us out to eat at the university club and then gave us a presentation on what they are doing with lasers and what they hope to achieve with it. It's called a CAP experiment if anyone is interested in looking it up. It is so fascinating but I would never have enough time to explain it in an email. Anyway pictures:

(There were a lot of pictures here but the email would not send)

Anyway besides all of that awesomeness, this week was pretty great. One of the interesting parts of serving in the Green Hills area is that there are 16 hospitals here. So there are always ambulances and helicopters coming from all of the towns surrounding Nashville. We get called to give a lot of blessings for all of the people in the hospitals away from their home ward and family. It is a very humbling experience and makes me extremely grateful for the health I have.

This week we went to Centennial hospital for the very first time. Centennial hospital is huge. It has three towers surrounding a central atrium and lots of entrances all around. The entrances have big glass domes over them and all open into big lobbies with glass windows and fancy desks. The round style of the glass ceilings reminded me of space mountain. The atrium was fantastic. First of all, all atriums are fantastic! This one had all sorts of shops and stores and there were trees and ferns in garden boxes lining all the paths. And then there was a round information center in the middle win a big marquee that read "information" circling around. If there was a picture dictionary, they would photograph this place next to the word atrium. It was literally the perfect ideal atrium that any utopian sci fi society would want in all their fancy buildings. I guess that's why it reminds me of tomorrow land. It felt like I was on a space ship.

Anyway,I'm sure that was far less interesting for you to read about than for me to be there, but oh well. This is the crazy part. It was empty. EVERYTHING. There were no cars anywhere around it. All the fancy bridges and tunnels and valet circles were empty. Every single fancy desk behind all the big windows was without staff. And most of the many entrances were closed. When we finally got into the atrium, it was empty too. Nobody in the security office. All the coffee shops and souvenir centers were left open, but without attendants. It wasn't all closed up like it had been abandoned or anything. Everything was still in perfect working condition. It appears as though every person had simple decided to stand up and leave work at the same time. Once we found our way to the center of the atrium to the incredibly cliche circular information desk, we discovered it was empty too. In the place where you'd normally talk to a person was a little red dial phone with an old receiver - spiral cord and all. We picked up the phone and heard the first voice since arriving. They told us our patient was on the fourth floor. So we walked over to the right tower and got on the elevators. On the fourth floor was a long hallway with nobody to be seen. Finally around two corners we found one nurse just outside the room.

The whole thing felt very surreal. It really felt like a video game. I was at least 85% convinced that a necromorph was going to appear at any moment and infect us. I was also pretty certain we'd get to the patient's room to find that he had become a zombie and we would have to run. It felt so weird but also extremely cool. I was actually kinda very disappointed when we saw the nurse and realized the hospital was full of live people. So yea there is that story.

I'm sure everyone will be like "duh, we told you so" but I found out something awesome. It turns out that if you do not eat sugar before going to bed, you sleep so much better. Then you wake up better too. It's fantastic. I went from being dead every morning - unable to even move let alone think or study - to running circles around elder Tolman. The irony is that you have more energy when you don't eat sugar. Who knew?

So this week I was reading in the Book of Mormon and it describes The Father, The Son, and The Holy Ghost as one eternal God. Which sounded really confusing to me, because they are three separate beings. I spent a long time looking around and being confused and eventually decided to give up. I asked myself "why does it matter?" But then I took that question seriously. Why does it matter? What should I care if the godhead is one trinity or three beings? The atonement still works either way... Right?

The prophet Joseph Smith taught that it is impossible for man to understand their own nature, purpose, and destiny without a proper understanding of God. So apparently it is important. Without understanding that the godhead is three separate beings, we would not be able to comprehend our own nature, our purpose in this life, and our destiny in the life to come. So now my study question for you is this: Why? What is your nature, purpose and destiny? What is the point of the atonement?

That will get your heads puzzling for at least a little while I suppose. It took me a couple days to figure out and it will take me an eternity to apply what I learned.

Anyway that is all for now :) have fun till next week

- Elder Basham

This is a picture of my district. They are super awesome.

Sister Richardson is going home now. It's hard to believe it's been
a whole transfer. We're all anxious to find out
who the new person is going to be.

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