Hola familia! Happy happy Halloween! I hope you all have your costumes picked out and have pictures to send me the next week:) (SEND ME THE PICS OR ELSE!!) They actually do celebrate Halloween here but not nearly the same or as much... I think it is just a carry over from the culture of the states. But they still recognized it which is great! I really wanted to buy a pumpkin to carve and to cook the seeds... but they are REALLY expensive... ok not really that expensive in dollars but in Quetzales yes, very expensive (100 for a pretty small sized one...) So I unfortunately had to bag that idea. They have similar looking green pumpkins but they are different and I don't think we could carve them if we wanted to. We also lack in the appliances to carve pumpkins sadly.
So tomorrow is my birthday... it is also the day of the dead here. Apparently there is this type of food called fiambre... to be entirely honest it sounds DISGUSTING! haha but don't you worry, I have already been assured I will enjoy it on my birthday by Hna Mary. It is apparently really expensive and a great honor to eat it... we shall see about that. Also, question! Can somebody look up Morcaf and see what and the world it is? Everyone here tells me it is legal coffee for Mormons. Needless to say I am a bit doubtful...
So this was an interesting week for us... basically all of our citas fell through and Friday and Saturday were dedicated to helping our ward prepare for an activity. With my pedometer I realized I am not walking quite as much as I thought but still a lot! We walked 5 miles Friday without sitting down or anything passing out invitations for our activity... a garage sale. Then we had the activity Saturday and were there basically the whole day helping and then afterwards the elders in my area had a baptism so we helped with that. Hna Ramos and I tried to make flan and was a bit of a disaster because our stove doesn't get hot enough to boil anything.... thankfully the recent convert that lives by us is a machanic and I am hoping he can juice it up a little bit:) I thought for sure if Zach was here he could get it to get a lot hotter. Speaking of my pedometer... mom I found mine! I am thouroughly convinced that the only reason somebody didn't steal it is because it had an alarm. The person that found it in the bathroom took it out of the bathroom and pulled the part out that stops the alarm from sounding, and I think it scared the day lights out of them. So they chucked it and somebody else found it... in the words of Hna Ramos it was in good hands:) I was SO happy to find it! So I think since Zach and Karli sent me one too I am going to surprise Hna Ramos with it. Put it under her pillow or something sometime this week, I know she'll love it!
So although this week was crazy and didn't feel very successful... we actually have a baptism this Saturday. I don't feel like it should count but for the standards of the church, it is technically our baptism. There is a family in our ward that has a son that is 9 years old. The husband is a member of the bishopric and it is a very active family. For various reasons the little boy isn't baptized... so when we realized he is 9 years old and not baptized we pressured his parents and he is going to get baptized this Saturday. Since he is 9, we have to teach him the lessons (even though he has gone to primary his whole life) and he has to have an interview with our district or zone leaders... it is kind of strange but none the less we have a baptism:) This family actually has a daughter on a mission in Cusco Peru... and guess what! She was companions with Sammy!! I haven't really had that confirmed through pictures or anything but the family said her last companion before this change was Hna Webber. So that is exciting. I want Toni to send me pictures if Sammy has any of them so I can print them out for her family. I don't think there daughter has a camera and they haven't seen very many pics since she left.
Yesterday was the wards primary program, and once again I am SO grateful for my violin! Nobody knows how to play the piano and so I was able to play with the primary for the program. The little kids are so amazed by the violin and all want to touch it... a reason I am grateful the instrument wasn't expensive because every time I have it out with the members somebody is grabbing the bow hair... thankfully I have rossin or I'd never be able to play for anyone.
So some funny experiences of the week... sometimes I am a little over confident with my spanish. Saturday night... when we were trying to make our flan we walked to Hna Mary's house to borrow a pan from her. We had just left our garage sale so in my mind Hna Mary asked Hna Ramos if we bought anything... in reality the question was if we left boyfriends at home in our houses... so keeping in mind the question my response was "I wanted to!!! But Hno Cayash sold it for Q25!!!" Hna Ramos was dying trying not to laugh (Hna Cayash is about 40 years old... member of our ward) Hna Mary didn't say anything because she didn't want to make fun of me. But it was pretty funny afterwards when Hna Ramos told me what was so funny.
I have also learned that all the men here think women are the most unintelligent people on the planet... we were walking up to Hna Mary's house one night to get my memory card she had borrowed. When we got to her house this car pulled up beside us and started talking to us. He started yelling at me "I can speak english! I can speak english!" Normally if we ignore them they just leave. But we got my memory card and headed back to the church and they didn't leave. So Hna Ramos asked them what they wanted and his response was "your friend! I can speak english!" Then he asked where we were from and Hna Ramos told him we were from here... then he said no not you, your friend! It was so funny and I am amazed that these men think I am just going to hop in their car with them as if I had no sense at all...
So I told you all last week that we were going to give Luki and Carlos a baptismal date... Satan is working on them! We didn't end up having any citas with them but they did come to the baptism Saturday and church Sunday because their little girls participated in the primary program. We are going to try and have Presidente Bautista in our next cita with them and hopefully that will help us out a bit.
So as you can see in the majority of my pictures... my nose is permanently red!!! It doesn't matter how much sunscreen I put on every day, I always get burnt... I imagine it is the altitude and that we are in direct sunlight the majority of the afternoon. We traded the rain every day for sunshine which I love and strong wind with LOTS of dust which I don't love:) I smell like dirt every day when we get back and I will have you all know, Hna Ramos and I BOTH wash our feet every night:) I told her about how everyone makes fun of me for that and she wants to get a picture one day of me washing my feet.
I mentioned before that there are a million and a half dogs here... well we have a friend among the many dogs that live by our house. One day this week i decided to find her and give her some food. The cars hit dogs every other minute here and she'd gotten hit at some point this week. So i gave her food and want to know the end result? We had 12 DOGS FOLLOWING US to our next cita!! It was SO funny and I had no idea what we were going to do if they followed us all the way. Some men saw us and thought we were scared so they threw a rock at one of them and they scattered. I wish I had a picture because it was SO funny!
So the same Hno Cayash scared us one night in his car. He saw us walking along and thought it would be funny to almost run into us. So when my body goes into flight or fight mode... my spanish heads out the door. So he did this and I screamed at him "Hno Cayash I am going to kill you!!!" Him and the youth he had in his car with him thought it was pretty funny. This isn't the first time I have had to yell at him in english... no worries though:) I got him back! He was walking into the chapel and I jumped out in front of him... he is one of my favorite members because he helps us a lot with finding new people to teach and the less active members. So that is good:)
Mom you will appreciate that I gave the lipstick you sent me to the garage sell and with the calculation it was sold for 28 cents... I about died when I found out! I told the guy that it would probably be $15-20 at clinique!
So this was a good fun week... lots of crazy experiences. We have another investigator that will probably have a fecha (date) this week. We are little nervous because she doesn't really question anything we say, she just says she believes it so we are trying to make sure that she has good intentions and all, but if we asked she'd be baptized tomorrow! I officially completed 2 months in the mission field yesterday... the temple open house starts in 12 days and we start working at the temple the 18th. We are SUPER excited but hope that this isn't going to put a hault with our investigators. We have changes the 22 of November and PRAY that I don't get transfered. Because if I do get transfered this could potentially mean that I only get to work two days in the temple because of how they scheduled all the sisters, depending of course on which area I might move to. Only two more weeks and I am done being trained! CRAZY! Have a great week and an amazing halloween!!! I LOVE YOU ALL!
Love, Hna Nelson