Tuesday, June 23, 2009

June 8 2009

I can't help but think that today Teton High Adventure Base begins training. It is probably cold, rainy, and snowy there, but last year those were my favorite two weeks.
It is interesting to hear about Dad's fascination with turkeys. There are tons of them here, but I don't really like them. Maybe it's a little different when they are in forests and not walking down the road or in someone's yard.
Jenny, I hope you can make friends with the old people. As missionaries we talk to a lot of old people. Old people are usually in their houses during the day when we contact. Sometimes people don't want to talk to us, but will invite us in to entertain their old grandma.
Clint, it sounds we do a lot of the same things you did on your mission. We usually yell into houses saying, "Buenas tardes" (good afternoon). We teach a lot of first lessons but rarely a second one. People will set an appointment for us to come back and usually won't be there. Everyone always offers a cup of water and a lot of times food. You gave me some good ideas about having a group meeting in a neighborhood. I have learned a lot from my companion about the culture. I often wondered why everyone loves my companion when he is so lazy, but they don't like me. But I have begun to realize that he always relates very well to the people and he can always make conversation. I have started trying to speak more even though it makes me uncomfortable.
Brooke, I still want to hear about the Italy trip.
This week I had a weird experience. We went to eat with a member and before eating I felt fine, but after eating I felt terrible and threw up a few times. After throwing up I felt perfectly normal again. But Mexicans tend to overreact to such things. The family we ate insisted on driving me to the emergency room. Only in Mexico can someone go to the emergency room, receive doctor's consulting, get an injection, and a box of perscription pills for under five dollars. I was still kind of mad that I had to spend five bucks when I didn't even feel sick. I forgot to mention that the injection was in the butt. That was kind of awkward.
Yesterday I had a cool experience. We had just eaten with a family and we were sitting around. After a while of sitting I finally got us to leave. We went to visit a sister from the ward that hadn't gone to church in a while. She let us in and invited us to eat. What I didn't realize was that she invited us to an Herbalife salespitch meeting. We got some free smoothie things, and I got my body fat measured. I gained back a few pounds and I'm at what I was when I entered the MTC, but the man said I am still under weight. Anyways, the supervisor guy started talking to us, and the conversation turned towards religion as it often does with missionaries. We ended up giving a first lesson to the Herbalife guy, and he is really interested and wants to come to church. He asked when he could go to church before we even brough it up. I think finding this man was an answer to a prayer that I had made earlier in the day.
Yesterday we had two baptisms. It was a really cool experience. Esteban and his wife Arnulfa were baptized. Arnulfa's three daughters have already been baptized and are active in the church. Esteban and Arnulfa have been coming to church for over a year, but couldn't get baptized because they needed a divorce and then to get married. A divorce in Mexico is very difficult to obtain. But this week after much planning, a brother from the ward drove my companion, my district leader, and the couple three hours away to a judge that could get them divorced from their former spouses and married for a reasonable cost. The days leading up to the marriage were pretty hectic, but it was worth it in the end to see a family completed in the gospel. What was awesome was that everyone helped out. The elder's quorem helped pay for gas. Hermano Chucho volunteered his car and to drive them three hours to Guerrero and three hours back. Esteban is awesome. Every week he would come to church with his boots, big belt buckle, and nice cowboy shirt with the top two or three buttons undone. But yesterday after his baptism he wore a tie for the first time. I couldn't help but smile seeing an old tough cowboy wearing a tie. They are both so excited and are having a party to celebrate tomorrow. I was glad to be part of their baptism and I am appreciative of the missionaries that originally found and taught them over a year ago.
Ok well I'm running out of time, but it was nice to hear from you all.
Elder Hansen

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