Tuesday, June 19, 2012

"I write all the stupidest stuff in my e-mails! It’s one of my only times I get to be silly, so just... bear with me until I get home... at which time I will continue to be weird."

Okay fine I guess I'll e-mail you guys again this week...


Look, I'm really sorry, I just can't be normal when I write these things. I write all the stupidest stuff in my e-mails! It’s one of my only times I get to be silly, so just... bear with me until I get home... at which time I will continue to be weird. So basically just be patient with me for the rest of my life. Butts are funny.

Anyway, I guess yesterday was Father's Day. Happy late Father's Day Dad!! I thought it was next Sunday which is why I didn't say anything last week. Oops! Sorry! But to be completely honest, as missionary, there are only two holidays that exist to me--Christmas, and Mother's Day. As a missionary nothing else exists. Halloween doesn't exist, Thanksgiving doesn't exist, Valentines Day doesn't exist, Fourth of July doesn't exist, and I didn't even have a birthday last year. My call home on Mother's Day counts as me celebrating Father's Day too. I miss you so much though and I honestly felt a little sad on Father's Day when we went to eat at Hermana Rosa's and their whole family got on Skype to talk to their Dad for Father's Day. That's what I should have been doing!!

Well, if you can believe it, it has gotten even hotter here in Olmos this past week. This does not make sense! It makes no sense but I don't care I just hope she knows! Seriously, its like Peru forgot it was on the other half of the world and thought it was becoming Summer like it is back home and decided to copy the northern hemisphere and turn up the heater, even though it was already turned up far too much. My goodness. Please stop.

Well this week was a little bit unproductive. Well, not so much... We didn't have many lessons, but we did have a lot of good experiences this past week. My comp has been sick all week so that affected us a little bit. On Thursday we went to have our first district and zone meetings of the transfer. Fun to see all the new elders in the zone. Still no Hermanas. Kinda weird. Now I'm one of only two North Americans in the entire zone, the other being Elder Thomson who's from Utah and has been out six weeks longer than I have. Cool guy, I already knew him from before. Also an elder who has been AP for the past six months got transferred into our zone. His name is Elder Gomez and I've known him for a while. He's way rad. He's from Guatemala, Guatemala! Just like Mom! Cool eh? He told me that I need to come visit someday. I told him I wanted to, but I'm pretty sure Mom's plans to go there this November are greatly ruining my chances of being able to. You shoulda waited for me!! Haha. He also served in Pacasmayo before I did. He's a great guy. Stoked to have him in the zone!

Yesterday we got to give talks again. Here the missionaries give talks every single month, which I think is kinda ridiculous because that means we give 25% of the talks and the members really need to be given the opportunity to speak more. Heck, I don't think I've ever in my life seen a missionary give a talk back home. Why so frequently here?! Laziness is why. Its easier to just have us do it all the time. Sigh. But it went pretty well. I'm getting better at improving talks these days. Prob has something to do with the fact that every single day in every lesson we just kinda have to wing it. I mean, we have lessons and plans, but every situation is different and we never know completely what to expect. Every visit is different! I spoke about how in the Church we are so blessed, and we have the great opportunity and responsibility to extend invitations to the people we know so that they too can experiences these blessings that we have. Because, if you think about it, every single one of us who is a member of the Church is a member because someone at some time extended an invitation to us, or our parents, our grandparents or ancestors or whoever. But its all because someone invited someone else. Kinda neat thought, so I focused on that idea and asked them to pray for missionary opportunities and pray about who of the people they know has been prepared and is ready to accept the gospel in their lives.

After church we had a giant branch council that included all the district leaders of all the organizations and it was pretty neato. Being part of a district is really going to be a huge blessing for the members of Olmos, I can already tell. I'm excited for them.

Had some good visits this week too. Well, we're still visiting Silvia, and she still doesn't want to accept a baptismal date, but she has desires to progress and to read and she did go to church yesterday, so little by little she's progressing. Yesterday we went and looked for a man who had been listening to the missionaries before I came to Olmos. He let us in gladly and we had a way great visit with him. He asked us about baptism in our church and told us that he wants to be able to be baptized. Serious?! He's been to church a ton of times, he has his Book of Mormon and everything. He has a strong tesitmony and faith. The only problem is that he isn't married. But, he totally has desires to get married, and he already has plans to do it so that he can get baptized!! So rad! Great find on our part. The past missionaries stopped visiting him because he couldn't progress because he wasn't married, but now he's trying to get that all worked out which is awesome. Gonna work with him a lot more now. Also remember when I told you about Juan José a while back, who thought I was from Orange (and was accidentally right. haha.)? Like two months ago I think I told you that he told us that he wants to get baptized and he wants to get an eternal marriage in the temple. Well, he lives in Chiclayo and only comes to Olmos on the weekends, but he hasn't been coming lately and we haven't seen him in forever. But the other day, I saw his girlfriend, who is a member of the church, and I asked her about him, and she said he's doing a lot of studying because he's just about to graduate from the university down there so he can't come down so frequently anymore. But just as she said that, she got a phone call from him, and she told him that I asked about him and he was like "Really? He remembers me? Let me talk to him!" so she handed me her phone and I got to talk to him for the first time in a long while, and he told me that he was gonna do what he could to make it down next weekend so that he could visit with us. Rad!! He's way ready to get baptized too. We have so many potentials... But really he lives in Chiclayo so it'd be better if we passed on the referral to the elders down where he lives. Next time I talk to him I'll get his address and try to do that. But he goes to church here in Olmos so I don't really know if it would be better for him to get baptized here or there but... whatever I'm confusing myself. We also knocked on a door of a lady who the other elders had contacted a long while back. She let us right in and as we started talking we got on the subject of families, and I asked her what is it that she wants most for her family, and she told me "I want my kids to be members of your Church." Haha, whoa, seriously? Was not expecting that answer. Anyway, we don't really know where that will go, but seemed like a promising first visit!

Something weird happened too. A few days back one night before bed I put in one of our Church DVDs, and switched the language to French just to see if I still understood anything. Well... I understood a word here and there, but hardly anything. And mostly just the words that were similar to Spanish. Haha. I felt kinda sad. Eight years of studying that language and I barely understand a thing. How lame! Well, after that just because I was bored I switched the language to Portuguese, and to my surprise, I actually understood a ton. I almost understood everything actually. Haha. I'm pretty sure I've never heard Portuguese before in my life, and I can already mostly understand it. Eight years of French?... Nothing. Never studied Portuguese in my entire life?... Understand a lot. Interesting. Haha. But really I'd always heard that Portuguese was basically like a mix of French and Spanish, and now I can definitely confirm that ancient myth. Myth busted!!! I mean... myth confirmed... Basically it was Spanish and French mixed. Kinda cool. I feel like I'd be able to learn it really easily.

Anyway, that's pretty much been my week in a nutshell. Not the most productive, but had some good experiences and the future is looking brighter! But hopefully not hotter. In two days it officially becomes Winter here, and I can't wait to have a nice white Christmas in July! Not. Also, more importantly, that day is Mom's birthday!! Happy birthday Mom!! I'm actually going to be able to sort of celebrate your birthday, because that day is also little Habibi's birthday and she's turning 3 so we're gonna be celebrating her birthday with Hermana Rosa and her family. I'll think of you!

The mission is treating me pretty good. Its really made me start thinking about what I really want to do with my life when I get home. My ideas are slightly changing. Like for example, I no longer want to be a musician... When I grow up, I want to be a truck driver. They have the best hats.

-Elder Hemsley

Just kidding. Have a great week and don't forget to watch some Star Wars for me!

Here's another video I like:

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