Greetings from Tuxtla Gutierrez. We had a really good week this week and if all goes well, this coming week will be even better. The best thing to happen was after a year and a half of investigating the church, an 18 year old named Luis has finally got his parents approval to be baptized. The service will be this Friday. A year and a half´s worth of missionaries prayers has been answered :) We´ll also have a baptism on Saturday of another 18 year old named Cristian. I met him my first day in Mexico and have been teaching him ever since. Hopefully they will both be on their mission before I come home. :) Pretty cool huh? Also as a funny story, I ran into a girl who speaks English and was trying to make an appointment to teach her family - and I just couldn't do it. She would talk to me in English and I would respond in Spanish. So unfortunately I can no longer speak English, and I´m really not very good at Spanish either...life is tough haha :)
Thanks for the slew of questions, it makes me feel important haha. Well here we go:
1. I have used the leatherman a time or two. I´m really glad I have it.
2. I´ve only played the piano twice since I´ve been here. But I think I might get roped into playing a song this week that I have never played before - yikes.
3. I don´t really know to be honest if we can go to the temple with our converts. But our Christmas present from the president is a temple session. As a matter of fact I get to go tomorrow! I´m pretty excited.
4. Our ward has indeed had our Christmas Program. In typical Mexican fashion it started an hour and a half late, and we had to go home before anything really happened. (they were kind enough to send us home with a bit of food though) :) To be honest, the programs we have had in our ward have been more enjoyable to me. I love singing songs with the ward and everything.
5. Again I don´t really know of any set policy regarding number of service hours. It is certainly encouraged though, to do some service. For example this week we helped Luis scrape paint of our his walls for an hour and a half in an effort to gain his mom´s approval (IT WORKED!!!). Our mission is pretty loose in regards to additional rules. We are pretty much on our own to figure out how to use our time wisely; which I like.
I´m not sure if Dengue is common among TGZ missionaries, but I doubt that I´m unique. The thing that is different than I expected about living in Mexico: tough to say. I thought poverty would be different. Life is no less enjoyable here, in fact its hardly any different. People are people - the ones that want to be happy will be happy, those who don´t won´t. Some people work hard, some just do the bare minimum. Its really exactly the same. As to what people think of me being an american...I don´t really know. They all think I´m super rich and want me to give them stuff. Everybody I pass in the street says, ¨Hey Güero!¨and everyone stares at me in the collectivo. And drunk guys cannot resist the urge to talk to me.
Oh and everybody tries to speak English to me, and they are really bad at it haha.
I did indeed recieve the package, but am still waiting to open it. Though I did drink one of the hot chocolate packets with a bit to much enthusiasm...my tongue has been rubber all week. haha. I also got a letter from Mikele and Jace in case they are wondering :)
I´m glad to hear you´ve had an enjoyable vacation. I love Utah! But I´m also just loving life here in Mexico. (despite the fact that sweat is running down my face as a sit here writing this ha). Being a missionary is the good life. Everyday the days seem to go by faster and faster.
I love you!