Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas in Peru...unexpected surprises (not so good)...and a phone call home (so good)!

Well hello again

This is weird since I just talked to you guys yesterday. I don't have much else to add. I s'pose I'll share some of my Christmas experience with those other people who weren't in on the top-secret phone call.

The Christmas tradition here is that everything basically happens at midnight on Christmas Eve. Or midnight on Christmas. I don't know which day it is because it's midnight so it's right in the middle. So the midnight in between Eve and Day. lolz. They have a big dinner and parties and whatever starting at midnight going to however late they're willing to stay awake. I don't really know what happens because we slept. So on Christmas Eve Elder Despain and I had a nice dinner with Mama Nena and Papi Alberto, and then we went to bed late.

Skip forward a few hours...

3:45 AM, Christmas morning. We wake up to discover that it's been raining a lot and our roof is leaking a ton. Water is all over the floor. Everywhere! And it's still coming down. Luckily none of our stuff got ruined, but the water was falling right next to my desk which has almost literally everything I own on it so it could have been really bad. So we put like five buckets out to catch the water and went back to sleep to deal with it later.

We wake up at like 7:00 and sweep the water out the door and get help from Papi Alberto who does a temporary roof fix job. We really need to get a real roof... and running water! We still don't have water! But right now I'm more concerned about the roof because if it rains again it will not be a good experience.

So Christmas is rainy. Really gloomy and wet all day long. Probably pretty similar to ol' Oregon I'd assume. Except we spent the day in the rain. We went to church that morning and only like 40 people showed up, which is kind of funny because for a lot of people Christmas is the only day of the year they go to church, but here people use it as an excuse not to go. But we visited an inactive member and got him to come to church with us! He said it was the first time he's been to church in seven years. So that's awesome! Hopefully it won't be seven more until next time. His house was flooding too. Tons of houses were flooding. Rain is bad.

We spent Christmas going around doing short visits with members and investigators. It was nice. I figure spending Christmas sharing a message about Christ with the world is a fairly decent way to spend the day. Neither Elder Despain or I have received our Christmas packages from home yet, so presents haven't happened yet. But we at least had stockings of candy.

Sooo... this is the crap part, and the part that my familia doesn't know about yet. Last night we got a call from our Zone Leader telling us that Elder Despain is getting changed to a new area tomorrow. Nooooooooo!!!!!!! This is going to be soo hard. I still don't know Pacasmayo very well. I don't know the investigators or members very well. I don't know anything. But now I'm going to be the one who's supposed to know everything about the area with my new companion. I'm not even done with my training yet! Whoever my new comp is is going to finish the second half of my training. This is going to be such a difficult few weeks. I'm seriously so nervous I feel sick. Not happy. I'm worried that I'll ruin the work here...

So yeah. That's no good. I'd be okay if I was the one being changed, but not losing my companion who's the one who knows everything about this place.

I'm hoping my package comes on Wednesday. I think that's when our Zone/District meeting is this week because of the changes. We'll see. Oh yeah, random thing: If you put Jesus stickers on your packages or letters it is more likely that they will actually get to me. Haha. No joke! I've heard it from a bunch of people and I guess the culture is that the people are superstitious so if they see a package with Jesus stickers all over it they will feel too guilty about stealing it or opening it. Haha. Just a tip.

Shoot. I dunno what else to share with you guys this time. I'm not feeling so great today. Real tired and kinda sick. Elder Despain's not feeling great either. We must have ate too much chicken and rice. Next Sunday is New Years day and so I doubt people are gonna come to church that day either. I don't even think we can go out proselyting that day because everyone is going to be mega drunk. I dunno though. I heard we might have some Zone activity planned but who knows.

Anyway, I hope everyone is liking the blog. I try to be more entertaining usually but I'm not feeling my best and can't think of much else to talk about. I always talk about the dumbest stuff in my e-mails because it's like the only chance I have to talk about really stupid things, and it's entertaining. Haha. So I enjoy distracting myself by talking about... whatever I usually talk about. Music I miss. Sweet Christmas presents I've received in the past. Movies I wanna watch. Speaking of that I really badly wanna watch Spider-man. All week I've been wanting to watch Spider-man, and it's because I've had that Yellowcard song Gifts & Curses stuck in my head which is about Spider-man and is also one of the most beautifulest Yellowcard songs there is. Spider-man 1-3. Really wanna watch. Not 3 so much, but 1 and 2. I'm just super excited to see The Hobbit when I get back. Also Ghostbusters 3 and Men in Black 3. Haha. But mostly Star Wars in bluray and in 3D in the theaters, obviously. And I don't even like 3D movies.

Talking to you guys yesterday was like the best thing ever. I started getting really quiet near the end because it was getting too hard to say anything without getting too sad. As we were walking back to our room from the calling place I was trying my hardest the whole time to fight back tears. Well, more like trying really hard not to just flat out start crying. I never cry, but I was so close. I never knew it was possible to miss anybody so much. I love you guys way too much and I'm so thankful for everything you've ever done for me and everything you continue to do. Thanks for always writing because reading your letters is one of my favorite things in the world.

Eh, it's been a tough week. I have a feeling these next few weeks are gonna be really tough too. I'm not ready to have my companion depend on me for anything when I'm still trying to figure out how to be a missionary. I dunno who he's gonna be but most likely he'll be Latin. It's weird that I even got a North American companion in the first place. But who knows! I'll tell you about him next week after I meet him! Weirdest Christmas of my life is over. I doubt next year can top it. And then the year after that will be the happiest Christmas ever. Next time I e-mail it'll be a new year! Wow! 2012. Rumor has it the world is gonna end. I guess if that happens I'll get to see you guys a little bit sooner. So I s'pose it wouldn't be that bad. But I'd like to have a little bit more time in this world if possible.

So yeah, I'm fresh outta stuff in my brain to share with you all. I'll race you to 2012! Loser buys the winner Mountain Dew.

Time Zones. Suckerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Haha I miss you mucho.

Until next week!

-Elder Hemsley

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