This week was kind of nuts, but MUY DIVERTIDO! (VERY FUN)! On Wednesday Hermana Joglar and I had a minicambio (a mini-companionship change) because there´s an area with some sister missionaries that has not had a baptism in like 5 transfers. Hermana Joglar, being the Lider Entrenadora de Hermanas (Training Leader for the Sisters) went with the junior companion in their area to kind of give a diagnostic and set some goals with the sister to better the area and help. So, the Senior companion came here to Lontué with me for a day, and she REALLY doesn't speak English. Also, since I was the one from this area, I had to lead her around to all our appointments and contacting and everything. It was QUITE an adventure, especially since I´d only been here for a week. I felt like we were lost like allll day! lol But we actually had a lot of success, and we found a new investigator! I learned a lot from her and I also learned that I need to pay more attention to where we are all the time and how to get there. We went to this area in our sector that Hermana Joglar and I had never been to before, out back behind the rest of our sector, at like 9 at night. It was a super long walk and kind of seemed sketchy, but we were excited to find this new sector and contact everyone in it because we were lacking in contacts that day. We finally get to this area, Viña Lontué, and it turns out there´s a reason Hermana Joglar and I have never gone (and why the Elders in our area told us that they don´t go there very often) the place is a freaking ghost town! LOL and it is SOOOO campo (rural) it is crazy! When Hermana Ruis and I finally turned the corner into the town and saw it, in all its glory, we both just started CRACKING UP! So, we walk up to the first house we find with someone living in it and we talk to the mom and daughter inside, meanwhile some CRAZY-drunk guy comes up behind us and starts talking to us all. It was hilarious; all of it, but the whole thing was a little sketchy. So after this house we decide it’s probably better to come back some time during the daylight hours. When we met up with the Elders later in the week, I talked to them and told them about our experience out there and Elder Turner says, ¨Yeah.... We were going to tell you that you probably shouldn´t go out there at night. ...but we forgot.¨ Hahahaha divertido! (funny)
This week we had a meeting with the Pulsiphers (the Senior missionary couple) to help us with our calling. Hermana Joglar and I are actually missionaries plus, because we also have the calling of Edificadores de Rama (church branch builders), so we are supposed to be visiting like 7 menos activios cada día (7 less-active church members each day) and working with verifying their addresses and mapping it all out! (OH, and turns out Hermana Joglar and I are also the first Sister Missionaries in this area for like 30 years or more. Genial! [Brilliant]). We are still in training though so I´ll have to update you in the coming weeks.
Right now we have 2 investigators with baptismal dates, but we´re not sure what´s going to happen with them. One is a mother, Sarita the other is her son, Roman (or Jano (Ha-no)). They both are awesome and want to be baptized, especially Sarita, but can´t right now because Sarita y su pareja no estan casados (Sarita and her partner are not married), and her pareja (partner) (also named Ramon) doesn't want to get married right now, for whatever reason, but they have been together forever and have two kids (their daughter, 13, is already baptized). Ramon is friendly with us but wants nothing to do with the church and always leaves the room when we start our lessons. He won´t give Jano permission to get baptized either, so we are praying and fasting a lot for that family and trying our hardest to get Ramon to participate in some way so that his heart will be softened/changed so he will let Jano get baptized and want to marry Sarita. We´d love for the three of them to get baptized together, so we´re doing the best we can and praying for miracles.
I love the people here! And the kids are super fun, I love it! Hermana Joglar taught me this cute little hand shake to use with all the kids, so we all have our little hand shake now, it´s awesome (we´re all homies lol)! Everything is sooo different here, every day is an adventure, and every day there is something new or different to experience and just soak in and often laugh about. The food for example, it isn´t bad, just different. There is at least one time a week when Hrmna Joglar and I will be eating with a member, and struggle to finish our plate of food (because it´s rude not to) and sit back and let out a little sigh of relief, like ¨YES! We managed to finish it!¨ Then the sister we are eating with takes our plates to the kitchen... and brings out the second course, a BIGGER plate of food! At that point Hermana Joglar and I usually give each other a look like ¨Holy WOW! How in the world are we going to do this?¨ So we do the best we can to force as much of the next plate down as possible, but very, very, slowly. At some point the sister usually notices and asks/accuses us of not liking her food. It´s times like these I´m grateful I have the excuse of not speaking the language, because luckily, my companion is wonderful at replying and convincing the Hermana that we actually love it but that we aren´t accustomed to eating so much, and explains that we actually don´t eat as much as the Elders, and all I have to do is vigorously nod my head and say ¨Si!!¨ at the right time. lol Then we help clean up with the dishes and what not and the sisters know to feed us less from then on. Hermana Joglar and I then leave the house, round the corner and bust up laughing!!! Talking about how we feel like we might barf and how we´re so freaking full we can hardly walk! It´s bien divertido! (really fun!) Luckily for us we only eat once a day, for lunch, and we only have a little snack for breakfast and dinner. On days like those we usually skip the dinner snack lol. Ohhhh, la vida missional! (the missionary life) :)
All in all, everything is great! Of course there are always little ups and downs, but the ups outnumber the downs (because we are in Chile, not Nottingham -that´s for you mom lol). We did manage to get a little heater which has been amazing, and I´m holding off on an electric blanket because there just aren´t enough sockets, so we could either have light OR an electric blanket. Things are awesome. I´m taking another 6 hour trip tomorrow, back down to Conce for the new missionary conference (two days), I´ll update you all next week.
Fam bam, I LOVE YOU SOOOO MUCH!!!! MISS YOU! Your picture is hanging on my wall where I can see it every morning when wake up and every night before I go to sleep. You´re the best family in the world. Thanks for all the love support and updates…how your week is wonderful! Talk to you soon! XOXOXOXOXOXO