¡HOLAAAA desde Perú!
Wellp, kinda forgot that you wouldn´t be writing yesterday! When I signed onto my email, I was super sad to see ZERO emails. :( But, then I remembered that dad had the LOTOJA!! I cannot believe that it was 2 whole years ago that I did that. But dad, way to go you stud! I’m proud of you. You trained so hard for this, and it paid off, didn’t it?? Good work.
This last Sunday was the decade anniversary of 9/11. That is so strange to me. I can still remember what happened. Mom, we were living in Clinton and it was before I left for school. I was in the kitchen with you, and I was flipping the channels on our little white TV that we had. I passed the news station by 1 or two channels when you told me to go back. I went back and saw the towers burning in flames. Then, if I remember right, you started to cry. I didn’t really understand what was going on, I mean, I was only in the 5th grade. But all that day in school we talked about what happened and we watched the news probably the whole day. It’s still incredible to me how something so tragic, brought our nation even closer together that it was before. Even though it was ten years ago, we will never forget.
Mom, yes! The package got here! Tell me everything you sent, so I can make sure that nothing was taken out. I'm pretty sure that everything is here, but just let me know in case! Thank you so much for everything! I loved it all. I gave the blue tie to Pres. Carrasco, and the apron to La Carrasca. (His wife) I am savoring the Dew day by day, little by little. Even though we can actually find it sometimes here. I got the 8GB memory, (perfect) and the mangoes!!! LOVE the ties. Especially the Tommy Hilfiger one. Nice choices. Also, that was really sweet of you, mom, having everyone write me a little note. I miss everyone so much! Nano is a crack up, haha. Hope you read what she wrote. I also enjoyed the what, 5 wedding announcements? Haha... crazy that everyone is getting married. Tell Danielle, Christian, Sterling, Andrea, Chloe and Chase all congrats for me! Please let me know if you sent off the camera yet.
On Sunday at church, some people from Buenos Aires, Argentina that work for BYU International TV visited our chapel. They asked for a couple missionaries that could help them with some filming. So, turns out that I was one of the missionaries that went and filmed with them yesterday. Elder Chugden and I went to the Plaza de Armas, they filmed us contacting someone, did some walking shots, and then it was off to my bishops house. There, we did an introduction to the Book of Mormon with the bishop. He was supposed to be an “investigator”. All in all, it was fun I guess. They say that it is supposed to air in about 6 months to a year. So we got a little while before were able to see it. Cool right? Also, that same day, we went to play soccer on a full soccer field WAY on the other side of Cuzco hidden up in the mountains. It was way fun, but I think I pulled my groin muscle or something, because its hurtin pretty bad. But it was some way good exercise to run a lot… AND my ankle didn’t bother me! Afterwards, we ran to the office to do some stuff, then went to the Carrasca’s house. (We call her Carrasca, because in Spanish, words that end in “a” are feminine – when words that end in “o” are masculine. So even though her last name is Carrasco, we call her Carrasca) Now, this is where the fun begins. First, let me give you some quick background. Sister Villegas had to come into Cusco from Puerto Maldonado (jungle) to have a check up on her liver. She was pretty sick. So, President sent Sister Ortiz to take her place there in Puerto. She was there for a week. Our new assistant, Elder Pastrana (from Colombia) had served in Puerto for 6 months. He told Sister Ortiz to bring some ____ to Cusco from Puerto with her, so that we can eat them. Now, you’re probably wondering, what in the world did she bring home!? Well, I’m getting there. When we were in the office, I carried them home in a plastic container that was sitting in the fridge for a while. The other elders ate some earlier while I was out with Elder Chugden filming. Does, Lion King ring any bells? Typically they are fried, and have a “tasty” sauce on them. But on the Lion King, Timon and Pumba don’t fry them. In fact, they eat them raw. That’s right! JUNGLE WORMS! Hahahah, here in Perú they are called Suri. (SOO-REE) Well, she brought some home, and yes, we indeed did eat them. RAW. We dubbed it, "The Suri Challenge". The most disgusting thing I have ever eaten. We made a video, for proof, so I’m gonna try and see if I can burn it along with some pics to a CD and send it home. I almost threw up 3 or 4 times, but I swallowed it! The photo doesn’t really do it justice, because it’s so soft and mushy, but it has like a crunchy spine or something like that on the inside. Its head and mouth are especially hard and crunchy. But when you bite this thing, first it just explodes in your mouth, and then it crunches. Your mouth fills up with this rancid, bitter juice. I don’t even know how to explain the taste, but afterward I chugged some water, and dumped Tabasco sauce (Yeah, you can find that here!) in my mouth, and that kind of helped take the aftertaste away. Every time I burped though, the taste just came back up. Hahaha, oh man it was SO nasty, but a pretty cool story!
Anyway, we are doing well here in the office! We had some fun things happen this week, and the work continues forward. Something that Elder Whittaker and I have decided to do is to really work more with the members. Elder Bednar gave a statistic that 20-30% of referrals given to the missionaries are baptized…When only 2-3% of people found knocking doors or contacting in the street are baptized. So, our goal is to go to as many members houses we can and ask for referrals. We have a couple returned missionaries that live in our ward, and they help us out a lot.
I love Perú. I love my mission. El tiempo aquí está volando. Todos dicen que el segundo año se pasa como 2 meses. No sé, pero sé que el primer año ha pasado bien rápido. Me encanta todas las experiencias que estoy ganando como misionero. Estamos aquí con un propósito: Llevar a cabo la obra del Señor aquí en la tierra. Somos instrumentos en Sus manos. Si confiamos en El, El nos ayudará y preparará el camino al andar.
Les amo a todos muchísimo, ¡hasta la próxima semana!
Misión Perú Cuzco
PS, enjoy the pics! One is of all the Suris in a tupperware thing, and the other of me with the camera used to film. And, the sunset over Cuzco. And me, washing a dish in the apron. They loved and appreciated what you sent them! They send their love and say "Thanks"!