Chinese at restaurant. Tue, Feb 20, 2007.
02/20/2007. 797. Today I had the idea to go to a certain area Northeast of Indianapolis for dinner tonight. I have passed that area on the highway before, and have had it in the back of my mind. I'm not sure if this was inspiration today, but the impression or idea was at a level that I felt confident acting on it.
I took off before rush hour to make sure I was beyond the metro Indianapolis area and the nearby bedroom communities in order to avoid traffic. I got to the place I had in mind about 5:30, and there was a strip-mall Chinese buffet restaurant where I remembered it.
They weren't that busy, but a little understaffed, and no one bussed my table while I ate. Eventually the bus-girl was cleaning the table next to mine, and I was able to strike up a conversation. Her English wasn't very good. But I was able to use the few Mandarin words I knew, "gay nee" (give you) and "mien fay" (free, or no money), to get the idea across. She accepted the Simplified Chinese Book of Mormon and the bilingual Chinese/English New Testament.
I tried to convey the idea of reading the English Book of Mormon in parallel with the Chinese in order to learn some English, but she just repeated that she couldn't read English, so she didn't accept the English edition. The cashier was cleaning another table and was looking on during part of our conversation.
The bus-girl was very humble and sweet and appreciative of the gifts.
After I finished eating, I left a nice tip, and headed towards the front. Just as I got near the counter, the cashier received a phone-in order, so I sat down and waited. She looked at me and smiled, as if she anticipated me offering her the material too. When she got off the phone, I offered, and she accepted both the Simplified Chinese Book of Mormon, and the English version. I forgot to offer her a video though. She was polite and receptive, but not excited about it. She pointed to some other bilingual Christian material sitting on the front counter that someone had left before.
I may not have been entirely smooth in my presentations, but the two ladies did project or emanate the light of Christ. They seemed humble, honest and righteous people. I don't know what's going to happen. But it was worth the trip. The fact that that area stuck in my mind for several months, and came to remembrance today may have some portent.
I stopped at a town along the way back home to do some shopping, browsing and make a reconnaissance for future reference, and found two more Chinese restaurants there that I hadn't known about before.