On Mondays, which is his P-day (Missionary Prep Day) he can write or email. He wrote that he likes his champion, Elder Bullough, who I understand is from Tooele, Utah. Elder Riener has been doing some of the investigator lessons, but feels he still needs lots of practice. In addition, he wrote that him and his companion have two baptisms coming up. Way to go! He's in a mission field that is spread out long distances, so missionaries are given cars, but the tiny Toyota sedan is too small for his long legs. He's supposed to have a bike for occasional days. The mission president said they had a bike for him, but not sure why it has not been delivered or why arrangements have not been made to pick it up.
I have spies everywhere. :-) We know a couple of the families in the ward he has been assigned and they have let us know he's doing great. He gave a talk last Sunday and gave his first church tour. He's been assigned to the Seabeck Ward in the Bremerton Stake. For those who do not know, a ward is a local congregation, usually made up of between 200-600 members, which fall into specific geographic boundaries. While a stake is a group of several local wards in a geographical area.
He feels he's never really left home, of course, as a crow flies, he's probably less then 10 miles away, but we are divided by the Hood Canal and other geological features. In other words, about 45-50 minute drive from us. We jokingly have asked, 'What's the weather like out there?" "Let me look out the window." "Oh, never mind."
His cat has been missing him, although it's a bit hard to tell - since he's a cat, but he has been sleeping with Mommy and Daddy's since Michael's been gone. Also, thought it was odd or rather wrong when at Sunday night dinner our middle son sat in Michael's chair at the dinner table - how dare he!!
Two weeks down, only ten more left to go.