Monday, August 30, 2010

August 23, 2010

Familia Zuñiga Gaona now, right before the baptism.
Familia Gaona. Elder Lopez snuck in the picture...if any of you see a missionary try and pull a thumbs up or anything during a baptismal photo, tell them Elder Newell kicks them in the shins.

Mauricio signing the papers.


I have hard copies of the demolition pics, I`ll try and get them over there digitally next week. But we went back with this family yesterday to help them out. They are there every week on sunday trying to get the house livable, so we decided to go help them out. This week we didn`t do anything since it was raining, but we were able to do what missionaries do best, talk about Jesus! Is it wrong that I just remembered Jim Gaffigan`s bit about talking about Jesus and the Pope off-hours?

Kyle...geez, I don`t remember them. Have our neighbours changed at all? It was sooooo weird to see those photos of the back yard. So many memories came flooding back. Not to mention I was distracted with how gosh darn handsome I am....*cough*

Ya, I want to have some of Dad`s salsa please. We have salsa in every meal here, but it isn`t Dad`s salsa. Salsa also means sauce in Spanish, so it is basically anything suacey that also usually has chili in it.

That`s awesome that you`re coreographing now! Congratulations! There is a toooon of Zumba over here, and apparently the dad of Elder Rojas is big into it too. I can`t wait to see all your great works when I get back!

Ya...guns...not fun. The cops here walk around with a lot of them. I`ve never seen anything used, or even pointed, but still. DONT WORRY! There`s no danger here, but the cops have to have a strong influence in certain parts of town. We don`t go to those parts of town :)

Well, this week...hijoles, it was pretty intense. This familia Gaona, they are the investigators I talked about last week. The problem is that they are super humble, and they don`t have any documents. Like, at all. Mauricio, the husband, cuts avacado from the trees, where he climbs up with nothing more than a stick with a knife on the end, and a sack. He is up in these super tall trees with no sort of safety equipment. People like him are called changos, or monkeys. anyways, we went with them to get some studies done, so that they could start the process to get married. I coached them through getting blood drawn, thanks Mom for all your help in getting me poked so many times, they were really nervous. We got all the papers we needed except one, which is the most important. We needed to go to the civil offices in order to obtain it, but both had to go, and it only opens in the morning on weekdays, when Mauricio works. He asked his boss to miss work, but he said no, and that he could do it this wednesday.

The problem is that we had a super special baptismal service planned with President Jersperson, and we needed to do everything we could so they were baptized. So we told him to go talk to his boss again after we all said a prayer. He waited for his boss from 7 until 9, but he never showed up. When we arrived he told us what happened, but said he had the cell number of his boss, so we called him using our phone, and passed it to Mauricio. He said, "Hey, I can`t work tomorrow, I`m getting legaly married." The boss said it was OK. So that was miracle number 1. Honestly, I probably won`t have time to get to all of this`s gonna be a series! WOOOOOOO NEW FEATURE! We went to the offices the next day, and something AMAZING HAPPENED! BUT YOU ALL HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL NEXT WEEK! Hah.

Outside of that, the week has been really good to us. We have seen much success in our efforts. Oh, sorry about withdrawing so much money Mom and Dad, there was a bit of an emergency, I even had to dip into my reserve fund. We can count that as the money that Aunt sent for me. I have to take out just a little more today so I have money to live this next week, but after that I should be OK for a while.

So, Mexico continues being interesting. The more I am here, the more I feel bad for these people. In America, we have our culture. We took what we felt was the best from everyone, and there we are, our own little world. Mexico isn`t like that. Everything has to do with the conquistadores. There is a constant clash of culture between the indians and the spanish and the catholics. All of the cultural heroes are spañards that came over to conquer their land, or catholic priests and nuns. The only american hero I have seen is Monctezuma, the last Mayan(?) king, and it`s basically a simbol of desperation. I have thought a lot about how it would be if America were conquered by Japan or something 400 years ago, how would it be? Weird.

Anyways, it`s time for ONLY IN MEXICO!!!!!!
So, everybody here has dogs. The problem is that nobody has a pet cemetary or anything, and there`s about 8 dogs on every street corner. So, what do people that have no money do when a dog dies? Yep! Put it in a sack, go down the road a bit, and throw it as hard as you can away from your house. It makes for interesting smells, sights, feels, and sounds. I have yet to taste it except to smell it, but I feel like the 4 are enough.

Anyways, I think that`s all for this week fam. Hope everything goes well for you all this next week.


Elder Joseph Neil Newell

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