Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Week 2 - 4th-10th de Septiembre

4-5 de Septiembre:

I am combining these entries today because I had no time to write yesterday, kinda no time to write...
[The missionaries are on a set amount of time of 30 minutes that they can read, write and send emails out, while at the CCM (MTC/Missionary Training Center). Oh, don't forget that everything in BLUE is his mom, Jill, who is adding some clarification and her 2 cents.]

Today's fake investigator lesson stunk!  Not because of our material, but because of our language skills or lack thereof.  We read three wrong scriptures (don't forget we have to do live translation)  She almost fell asleep because she ¨´just got back from work´ (The Investigator is our teacher) and we stuttered so much someone would think we need medication!  It was terrible, this investigator has been very difficult, but has proven to us the point that there are still many things we have to learn in the Spanish Language.  Oh yea, and tomorrow is Proselyting!  For those who don´t know it is where we go out as missionaries of our Lord Jesus Christ and share the message of the Restoration of the Gospel, and the Importance of Families.  I am very excited, but also extremely nervous because of our apparent lack of Spanish. 

Today, we went into the Immigration office, and continued our Migration Status (Bless the
Found this great image online of traffic in Lima Peru
Church for doing all of our paperwork for us!)  They started the moment we got our calls!  I checked the dates!  Drove total of like 2 hours, and saw SO Much.  Dogs on roofs, dead birds, MANY Close car accidents.  Seriously, how is not very car broken down and in an accident!?  Driving is crazy here!  We put a lot of trust into our drivers lets put it that way...
[I think this answers why missionaries in this area do not drive or ride bicycles. It is for their safety and I am sure liability too. Walking, buses and trains are the way of transportation.]

Some Sketchy people, but if you look closely, there is a bit of awesome in everyone.  It is amazing to think that if you take any person on the face of the planet that ever has been, or will be has a story - Good or Bad- They have a story.  The only thing holding me back from helping these people is that until October, we don't move to Huancayo, and the obvious language barrier.  Other than that, I cannot wait!

6 de Septiembre:

Its time for 1st proselyting day!  New Temp Companion, and a new area for us to visit!  Let me tell you.  Whoa.  A photo does not do it justice.  Hundreds, if not thousands of these homes are in a massive state of decay.  All of the homes in this area are brick based, many of which are not maintained properly, and the roofs are tin metal, so it is inevitable for it to degrade.  Streets are constantly ripped out for construction-pipe purposes, some ever were over 10 ft deep with running sewer. Yum right? Oh, and the dogs were everywhere! All shapes and sizes, probably 1 or 2 for every house!  Dogs on roofs, and the streets are not as kept up as most streets back home.  For all intensive purposes, life must be very difficult in this section of Lima, the Capital of the Nation.  But even with all this adversity, poverty, trials, etc... These people love their God, and from what I see, will do anything they can to become closer to Him.  While I know I could find a way to live in these conditions if necessary, I am grateful that I have opportunities available to me I wouldn't have anywhere else.

**Side note: The Area we were in was a set of streets called Buenous Aires outside of the Inter District of Lima, Peru.  Totally reminded me of entering LA [Los Angeles], but with ALL Dirt Roads, need for fixed sanitation, and most of all... Probably a dog for every house. [It reminds me of the book we read to him, Go, Dog. Go!; big dog, little dog, lol]

7 de Septiembre:

2nd Sunday at CCM!  Fast Sunday, but it was awesome!  Not so much to report, but we had hamburgers and fries, and rice!  Yum!  Until they recalled the beef.... Because of something dumb.  It was to late though, I already ate, it... And I'm still alive! So not that big of a deal right? Watched some broadcasts today and also had a health class today regarding where to eat, and what not to eat... There are some nasty things to watch out for here in Peru!
[I have to laugh, sort of. They were taught on what to eat and where, but they had some bad hamburger at the CCM?? lol - But seriously, as only his mom would know, over the weekend, I felt impressed to pray for his health on Sunday. Not sure why at the time, but now reading this, that they may have been given bad meat.... listen to the spirit no matter what!!]

8 de Septiembre:

No Journal Entry - Nothing fun to report today, half of the class was gone at Interpol.

9 de Septiembre:

Went to Jail today.  Just kidding...It´s called Interpol, which means basically the International Police.  We had our dental records recorded for state purposes (I think they just check to see if I had teeth, no joke) as well as ALL Fingerprints and Profile Mug Shots.  Soon we will get our Andean ID Cards which will actually be Religious Citizens!  Cool!

10 de Septiembre:

2nd P-Day !  Went to the temple again, which was awesome. 

Lima Temple is so awesome!  One of the best things about the LDS Church (Outside of knowing that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored) is that the Gospel is the same literally wherever you go.  Very nice!  Bought some stuff today at Distribution using my Credit Card... It worked on my end! Between all the stuff I bought using the card, it should equal to something about $38 in American Money
[Mom checked and it was just under $29. Excited to see that it worked, it was a great test]... Not including Foreign Fees. [I guess he purchased some necessities and hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer will definitely make it into his first care package. ]

We are getting better at figuring out the public transportation down here!  It is crazy, but great for us!  50 soles, which is about 25 cents in American I think .. The ratio right now is 1 American to 2.85 Peruvian Sol.

Hope all is going well for those reading this back in the States!  We just got a new batch of Missionaries, (About 74, and most from North America, so we get all new treats for food!) Anyways, here at the CCM everything is taken care of for us here.  Basically we just study our hearts out everyday.  Language Study, Gospel Study in Spanish (No time hardly EVERY to study in English for anything....Listen to that future missionaries! They Expect you to know everything about the Gospel AND HOW TO TEACH IT!  All we do here is do what we should already know and apply it to Spanish.  

I am continuing to take pictures, but cannot send them.  Also, we have a missionary that just left, and he is native to Peru.  If you could Mom, please when you get a chance email me a copy of sheet music of Come Thou Fount in English please... He is learning English, and is really good, and just loves the Hymns to death, So I want to email that to him.
[Got it]

Also, I have been found out.  I conduct music like 4 or 5 times everyday for our district meetings.  Awesome. 

Time Flies when you look back at it, but in the moment, time is going so slow! I had a dream in Spanish, which I am hoping is an indicator that things are improving! Learning Spanish really helps here because we are also learning how to teach gospel and teach Spanish as well. If we had courses like this back home as a summer project, and how it is instituted here, we would all know it so well!

Food is the same still. Rice for everyday. Eggs for breakfast every morning. There is some interesting meals, but overall not to bad.... [I wonder if they provide them tortillas too? So many more options when you give them tortillas with breakfast burritos etc. Oh yum! But I guess it can get a bit boring.]

Since two weeks have passed, I am now official in the Intermediate Level with everyone else in my district.  Spanish is definitely improving, but it takes time and a lot of work!

Also, add this somewhere on the Blog.  We hardly every see the sun., I think I have seen it like 2 times the whole time we have been here.  Not because of Fog near the Ocean, but becks of SMOG.  Its odd, and I miss seeing the sun.  We will go outside during the day or night, and the condensation building up below the smog is so thick that we walk, and we get sprinkles on our faces, but it isn't raining or misting... Its so bizarre.

Hope you are enjoying modern conveniences at home in the United States, something of which is very rare here in most parts of Peru.

Elder Holmes
Lima Peru, CCM