Monday, August 22, 2011

Myth Confirmed

Myth: it is impossible to understand Native speakers when you first get to the field.

Myth confirmed. Every missionary says it, and its true. I catch a few words at a time, but that's it. Don't worry, I'm not discouraged! Everybody says they all went through that. My trainer, Elder Johnson, actually got switched from English to Spanish speaking in the field, so he learned all his Spanish in the field, and he's good.

Elder Johnson has been out for 22 months, and is going to end his mission training me. I know, he got stuck with me, what a bummer. He's from Wyoming, likes to outdoor things, like hunting. He is an awesome missionary. He understands everything people say, and really cares for others.

So my first area is in Roswell City. I serve in the Cumorah Spanish Branch. Elder Johnson and I live with two other Spanish Elders who cover the same area we do. (our apartment is our entire district.) We have nice apartments, so don't worry. There are a lot of apartment complexes around here, so we have spent a good amount of time in them. The other companionship in the apartment uses the car, so we walk. The farthest I've walked is about 40 minutes, so its not too bad. When we got here, the weather was actually nice to me for a few days.

Our first day here (Tuesday), right after we got off the plane, we left the airport using public transit to give us an opportunity to practicing contacting in the real world. (when I say "we", I mean the three Spanish Speakers and the 11 english speakers that flew out) It was interesting, and I got rejected by an old lady. =) After we got off the train, one of the AP's, who came with us, took me over to a guy, said that he didn't speak much spanish, but I did, and then I got to explain about the Book of Mormon in Spanish. Well, I didn't scare him off, and he seemed interested, even asking where the closest church was. Yeah, that was a cool first experience. We drove the rest of the way to the Mission home, where President and Sister Wolfert met us. They fed us, and talked to us about the mission, and gave us encouraging words. We spent the night in the Mission home.

Wednesday at transfer meeting, I found out my companion was Elder Johnson. We didn't do a whole lot of work that day, but I found out Walmart is about a 20 minutes walk. Like I said, it wasn't too hot. That night, we had Peruvien food, which was delicious. The ward members pretty much feed us every night, and make sure we are fed. So far, I've really only Peruvien and Mexican food, but it has all been not too crazy and good. My fellow Elders assure me that I will get to eat weird things in the future. Yay!

So on the 2nd of September, our branch is having their annual event called the Day of Nations. Our Branch has people from at least 10 different countries, and there will be food from all of those countries! There's also going to be dances and other culture performances. We pretty much invite every one we see to it, because we wan't it to be an awesome missionary opportunity.

I haven't been able to meet any of the investigators Elder Johnson is working with because everybody is never home when you go to their house or is just busy.

Oh, something else exciting! Thursday, my first experience tracting! We were knocking doors for a couple of hours, and we had three people tell us they were interested, and another guy actually let us in and teach him right then and there. So maybe we haven't been able to contact them again due to fake phone numbers and their general lack of being present in their apartment after we've walked 35 minutes to meet with them, but Elder Johnson says people are rarely interested at all. We got 4 that said they were interested in a time span of 2 hours! Yeah!

The other Elders in our apartment had a baptismal service on Sunday. So people do get baptized here, there is hope!

Yeah, Georgia is beautiful and a little hot, but I missed the hottest part!

Don't worry about me out here. The Lord's got me in good hands.


Elder Clark

Jordan, BYU Roommate Elder Blake, Cousin Alec Judd

A view of the neighborhood. . .apparently there are lots of trees around everywhere

Elder Johnson, who apparently has normal moments too

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