May 7, 2012

Greetings from Gazcue

Hermanas Ball, Cottam, & Avery
Barbeque in the DR

We had a good p-day. I loved seeing my hermanas today.  I sure miss my peeps in Mendoza.  I miss hearing the members that lived close-by talking loud in the morning as they walked by the house.  I miss my Egyptian investigator but he is doing well.  I think I left a part of my heart in Mendoza.  We will see what Gazcue brings.  We went and ate pizza with the hermanas which was fun.  We walked by a park and the British Embassy had cool photos out, with pictures of the Olympic stuff. Cool! 

Hermana Cottam and Hermana Espinoza

I am here in Gazcue. I am in a new area with a new companion, which is interesting.  My companion is from Peru and is nice.  She got here on Wednesday afternoon and the Bishop’s wife in Mendoza brought me to the office.  I was planning on taking a taxi to the office but the assistants wanted me to come with a member so the Bishop’s wife took me.  The elders weren´t back from the airport and nobody was at the office so we had to pick up the Bishop’s kids from school.  It was either that or stand out in front of the office by myself and wait for the elders. J The office elders took us to McDonalds for dinner and then dropped us off at the house which is a 20 minute walk from the office. We unpacked and got settled in. On Thursday we went to our zone meeting and then hurried to go food shopping.  Then we went to a meeting at the office for the newbies and their interviews. It has rained a ton this week...pretty much every afternoon it has poured.  The Bishop’s daughter took us out to visit a few members and we have been doing a lot of contacting and walking. On Saturday we went and worked at the church´s booth at the Book Fair (feria de libros en santo domingo) and that was cool. It was all about family home evening. We had to take our tags off since they just wanted it about families and stuff...very low pressure, but great exposure for the church. On Sunday we went to church and contacted a lot. It is weird being in a ward where people don´t know how much time you have in the mission.  Yesterday someone said she wasn´t sure if I was brand new but then when I started talking she said she knew I had lots of time in the mission which was nice.  I am a little self-conscious about my Spanish, trying to be the experienced companion who doesn´t understand everything but whatever.  We got wet in the rain, but it is just that time of year I guess. My companion is adjusting. The Spanish is different as well as the food and stuff.  She asks me questions but a lot of times I don´t know the answers... like what kind of vitamins to buy at the pharmacy. She talked a lot with Hermana Vera today so that was good. Our house is nice with hot water and air conditioning.  The best part is the microwave. J  It is a lot like the house in Mendoza minus the bucket baths.  So the area is kind of hard, which I have heard.  Only 2 people have let us in their houses while doing contacts these past few days, but whatever.  The U.S. Embassy is in our area and the National Palace (the DR White House) is in our ward which is cool. I like walking around that. Someday I am going to drive up to that in my motorcade. J  There are lots of buildings that we can´t get into and it reminds me a little of Phoenix or places with rich buildings and nice houses.  Hopefully we will find some investigators.  My Egyptian investigator is doing good.  The hermanas are still teaching him.  They told me today they talked about the priesthood with him and how he could bless his family.  He said his son in Egypt asked him to give him a blessing but he said all he could do was pray for him, but now he knows about the blessings of the priesthood.  The elders that are now in the ward he belongs to don´t speak English, but they were at the lesson too and bore their testimonies and he said he couldn´t understand them but that he felt something.  That was the saddest part about leaving Mendoza.  I had to fight to hold my emotions back during that lesson on Tuesday night.  I said the opening prayer and he said the closing prayer and I always love to hear him pray.  As I was walking away from the church that night I absolutely felt that he was the reason I stayed in Mendoza so long and it was absolutely worth it.  He said he knows the Church and the Book of Mormon are true...J the joys of missionary work.  Well, I better go.  It has been great chatting with you.  I just want you to know that I think my direction skills have improved, so I am doing good in the new area.  I can find the office and our house which is important. J Anyways, I love you a million and can´t wait to chat for real on Sunday.  Good times!  Then after that I will see your pretty little faces in November and we can have a Spanish party.  I hope you all are doing well. I am settling in here.  I love you sooooooooooooooooo much!  Happy Mother´s Day. -Ejc

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