Well well well.... News from the Battlefront!
So this week, we are going to start with some very interesting news. The winds of change have arrived in the mission. Something very interesting is going on around here... But I can't tell you just yet (haha keep the suspense building).
So foist off, I want to say that I have been trying to send you pictures for the past couple of weeks now but the computers are SO slow. I was trying to send only one picture last week and I waited for 30 minutes and nothing happened. So I'll try again this week. I have a few ideas but we will see exactly what happens.
1. To Josh: yup I got your advice! thanks! I'm trying to figure out how to do pull ups without a pull up bar... We had one at one point (however, it was pretty terrible anyway). I did some pull ups and finished. Then somebody else got on and did one pull up and the bar ripped away from the door and broke! Haha. None of us are fat (well me, I might be gaining a little weight--muscle maybe? I hope) but ya. So we don't have a pull up bar. I have figured out a few other things but none of them work real good. Except one. It is like pull ups with a stretchy cord thing but you lay on your stomach-swimming position- and when you pull, flex your back. It does really well! But ya. But thank you. So I might not have a pull up bar for a while. Or will I? I don't know. Keep reading.
2. Have I used any skills/lessons I learned in the home. Haha. We can definitely put a resounding YES to that question. Everything. My piano skills are being used every so often. But that will increase even more in just a little bit here (tee hee). My singing--in which my confidence is growing. I have pretty much lost the vergonia to sing in front of people. It is nice. Also just small habits. The way we treat Sundays. The way we do work. All of those things we do at home. I use the things I learned at home everyday. They are just principles really. Everything just keeps growing and growing. Anyways. Ya. Just keep doing the stuff that you are doing. Build good habits. That is the safest thing for you. Be together. I have developed a HUGE HUGE testimony of families as of late. That is basically my life theme. Family. Epa! I wish I would have spent more time with the family! The family is so so key! The family is the fundamental fighting unit in God's Army--it's not the missionaries like you think it is. Yes missionaries go off to "war" and battle against the adversary, but it is only to unify and bring salvation to other people and their families. So ya. Just that. Anyways. Let's keep going.
3. Are there any dogs in Mozambique... haha. Ya. there sure are dogs. Plenty of them. All of them muts. They just roam around stray. Same thing with cats. But the dogs are worse. It is really quite sad. To be a dog in Mozambique is probably the worst kind of life I have seen. In Greece I saw similar things but it doesn't even compare to here. In Greece at least they had roaming vets to take care of the dogs a little and the people loved the dogs. Here, no one really likes them. No one takes care of them. I have seen a few dog fights and those are pretty scary! I can definitely tell the difference between an angry dog bark and an excited dog bark. All the dogs have diseases. Remember how Elder Christiansen looks at posters with dangerous spiders and stuff like that? We have posters of dogs and their diseases. How sad is that. They are almost all wounded in some manner or another. Bitten off ears or torn apart legs. It is just pretty terrible. Really. So ya. Not a fun thing to be. Sometimes I see an owner of a dog walking a dog and the dog is clean and fine! Wow! That's nice. And all of the police dogs are pretty good. But those are rare. Anyways sad stuff.
Let's do Africanisms
You might be in Africa if...
1. You see really interesting cool wheelchairs. The wheelchairs here are like tricycle wheelchairs. You sit in a seat and turn some "bike peddles" with your hands and it makes the wheel in front go. you can steer with the handlebars as you turn. Anyways. That is exciting!
2. The Kids play games with tires. Those are their toys! It is pretty awesome. I learned how fun tires can be during XC season, but I never knew that children half-way around the world had already discovered this seemingly unknown secret! Pretty much, you can do a ton of things with tires. and they do it all!
3. Your investigators try to teach you dialect. Haha. This week I started learning a little bit of Jawa up north by Tanzania. It is fun. Ndi udi? (how are you?) Ndi chenene assante (I'm fine thanks!) haha. Just for fun.
4. You visit a Mozambican funeral in a huge car. Ok., So I really don't have much time to write this but... Let me tell you really fast. One of our new investigators (this guy is gold--keeps all of his commitments) his mom died right after church last sunday, unexpectedly. So we went to her funeral. It was interesting. People here can't sing hymns worth squat but their funeral traditional stuff is so so so beautiful. So after the viewing where everyone sings, crys, wails and sprays lots of perfume on the body, we loaded up into the back of a mini semi truck--just slightly smaller. like a regular truck just bigger. No seat belts. Everyone is standing up. And we start travelling to the cemetary. Travelling at about a good 35 mph or so down the bumpy road, everyone just holds on to each other for dear life. Sometimes I felt like Woody from Toy Story when he is hanging on top of the car and his lips were flapping everywhere. That was me. Just in Africa on top of a car. anyways. We made it to the cemetary--one of the most beautiful I have seen. We watched them put the casket into the ground and covered it up and put weeds and plants on top of the dirt mound. It really was beautiful. Sad but beautiful. Anyways. back on the truck and back again. My balance on rickety cars is pretty sweet now I think.
5. People do everything that we think machines should do. Pave and paint roads. Wash clothes and dishes. Pound and crush food. Even flush the toilet! Haha. Our toilet flusher thing broke this week. My comp from Bear River City Utah said, "well, looks like we are gonna have to flush with a bucket" I said, "Flush with a bucket?" He said, "You have never flushed with a bucket? You must be American!" (He claims he is Mozambican). Haha so that was funny. Anyways, that's how you get it done here. I think I have more stories about toilets than I really should...
Anywasy. I bet you are all excited cuz here goes the news. We had TRANSFERS! and guess what else? EU VOU EMBORA!!!!! (that means I'm leaving!). It is really going to be sad but I am so so excited because I'm going to MAXIXE!!!! Maxixe, pronounced mah-SHEE-shee, is a brand stinkin new area that just opened up last transfer. I am going to be with a native comp. Elder Freire from Capo Verde. I have heard that the beaches here are just incredibly beautiful. I am super excited!!! Helping establish a new area. It is likely that I won't leave there for a long long time. I'll let you know how it is when I get there on Thursday! (in next mondays letter of course).
So that's all for this week. Let me know how things are going! Get ready for the winter. I wish you could send me some winter because I am sweating more and more each day. I have never sweat so much in my life! Woot Woot!
Your Crazy Maverick of a Missionary,