Saturday, March 26, 2011

Letter #61 - March 21, 2011

Hey Mom,

Well, I'll start by telling you about my week,


Today after our PDay, we were still in Rivera, so my comp and I just worked there. We had one lesson that was pretty funny. We went to this one house of a person that the missionaries had told us that they had contacted and said that they were going to by. Well this lady came out, and it was quite the conversation. She hated us, the church, and everything about North American culture in general. She was offensive, biased, and completely unable to support most of her claims with anything. She had decided that all evil had stemmed from America, which included our non-Bible believing church that we created. Well, it was quite the conversation. She was lonely and liked to talk, so despite her hate for us, she continued having this conversation. My comp, being American, was furious. I managed to do a pretty good job at defending everything, and said some things that were pretty blunt back to her. It was pretty interesting haha.


Today we were still in Rivera, so we had our district meeting there. I found this one to be particularily inspirational for whatever reason, so I was glad that we were there for it. Afterwards we came back to Vichadero, and I had my package waiting for me here. Woohoo! Before I opened it, I couldn't figure out what could possibly be so big. I guess a huge bag of marshmellows takes up a lot of space haha. Thank you! Anyways, so that was pretty exciting, as when I didn't get it in Rivera at district meeting I thought that I'd have to wait another week. That was the good part about coming back. The bad part? When we came back to our house, we didn't have power and realized that UTE (the power company here) had shut off our power. Apparently our neighbor who we switched houses with had some unpaid bills, which led to us getting our power shut off. We told her, and she told us that she'd pay what she owed ASAP. Thankfully we had some emergency candles that I never thought that we'd use, so we were able to see a little bit when we got back to the house at night. It sucked not having power, one of the things that we really take for granted.


Today in the morning, thanks to us not having any power in our house, I got to take a freezing cold shower. It sucked, especially since it's already starting to get cold in the morning to begin with. Brrrrrrrr... Today we also knocked the door of a woman, who was from Brasil. She spoke pure portugese. I discovered that despite sounding like funny Spanish and like I should be able to understand it, I certainly don't. I hope that she understood my spanish better than I understood her portugese haha. It was pretty interesting. Today we also had a pretty interesting lesson with this girl, Daiana who's 14, has a mom who went innactive after getting baptized 2 years ago because of a problem with a member in the ward, and a dad who used to be LDS as well until his pastor dad got him going to his church for a while until he totally went away from all churches. It was pretty obvious that she had heard some bashing on our church from her dad and pastor grandpa, despite loving the missionaries. I had always heard that some people criticized the church because we don't have the plates that we translated into the Book of Mormon anymore, but she was the first person that I've talked to who really expressed a concern about it. It was just interesting overall.


Tonight there was a ward activity for the Relief Society, and last night the branch president's wife asked us to pass out invitations, so we wasted our morning doing that for her. Today I also got the oportunity of taking a cold shower, although thankfully we got power sometime through the day. So, when we got back to the house at night, we were able to see well haha. For working today, it was a pretty slow day. It rained at a pretty consistant rate through most of the day, so it kinda sucked working in that.


This morning when we were working, we knocked the door of this woman who let us in. She said that in the two years that she's lived in Vichadero, the missionaries have never knocked her door (well, found her when she was home). I suppose that that doesn't sound too surprising, but after being here for as long as I have, it certainly seems weird to hear. It seems like everyone has heard the missionaries before. It makes me glad to hear that there are people out there who haven't talked to us like 1000 times before haha. Also today we had a lesson with the guy named Oscar who we're trying to help quit smoking. We had a lesson with him today, and I think he's lying to us. He took a long time to answer the door, and when I went into his bedroom to grab a chair, there was half a cigarette butt on the ground, and the room smelled like smoke... Hmm... I hope that he's not lying to us.


Today we had another lesson in the morning that was just like the one that we had last week. This time we found a woman who had never talked to the missionaries here in Vichadero, although she did in some other town and loved talking to them. Woo-hoo haha. We also had another lesson with Daiana today, which are extremely tough. The missionaries used to spend a lot of time talking to her family, and they loved the missionaries. She's 14 so she couldn't stay focussed if her life depended on it, the mom is prideful and I get bad vibes that she doesn't really like talking about the church, and we can only go by when her dad's not there. However, despite all that, they love us there and she wants us to come by like everyday to teach her english and stuff. It's tough. Everytime that we leave their house I never know what to do haha.


Today was another Sunday, and thankfully today for the first time this change we had people in church, four. It was pretty exciting. All of them for one reason or another are not really progressing towards baptism, but at least being in church is a start. It was kinda relieving as for the past two weeks nobody has shown up, so thankfully we people this week. This night we also had a pretty interesting lesson. We knocked on the door of this one guy who's pretty old. The way that I got into the house was by initially talking about the Bible, and where the teachings were written. I then asked about the Americas, and where the teachings of their prophets were, telling him that I knew the answer. He was intrigued, so he let us in. While inside, I was explaining again, showing him the Bible and how it had the old and new testament, etc. and he mentioned something about how he thought that our Bible was different. It was smaller, had different books, and talked about this other group of people called Nephites. I kind of laughed. Turns out he had a Book of Mormon already, although I think he kind of misunderstood haha. It was just kinda funny.


Today we're here in Vichadero, so it's been a pretty relaxed PDay. We studied, wrote some letters, got lunch, went to the bank, got haircuts, and now we're at the cyber. It's nice having some time like this to write letters. Whenever we're in Rivera there's never any time at all, as we're always with other missionaries. I was also desperately needing a haircut haha, so that was good. Afterwards I'm probably just going to finish up a letter, shower, and do a bit of cleaning. I feel like such a bum on days like this haha.

Other Stuff

Okay I got to tell you about something funny about Vichadero. It's in a part of Uruguay that has quite a few hills. The town itself is pretty flat, but it's surrounded by these rolling hills. On this one hill off of Vichadero there's this huge mansion all by itself. It has a ton of land around it, and can be seen from pretty much anywhere in the town. I've never been out there, but apparently this is the story behind it. A Brazilian family lives out there, who's absolutely loaded because they did a bunch of illegal stuff (robbing primarily I think) in Brasil, and to get out of it all, came to Uruguay. I've wanted to knock their door, although it would be a super long walk to their house up this hill, and apparently they shoot at trespassers haha. I'm not sure how much of that is true, but it's certainly the word around town haha. Just kinda funny.

Anyways, that's it for this week. Thanks for the package that I got! Have a great week, thanks for everything.

Love you,

Elder Fikus

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