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Monday, February 23, 2015

Letter #21

Hola Familia!

SO I feel like I am in a completely different mission.  I am now in Zona Xela Centro...area Panarama. I am in the city! I have a little area that I can walk through in a half hour.  I have a ton of people in my area right now.  The people have no clue how to speak in Kiche.  This place is nothing like Chirijox! They don't even know the basic stuff that I like to use...  I am super pumped.  My last area literally didn't even have sliced bread.  Now I have the big city.  I have a Walmart type store in my area.  The people don't spend their days cutting wood and growing maiz and making corte.  They are pretty much city people.  It is a culture that is completely different!  They all speak just Spanish and have accents and stuff haha.  Really it is going to take a little while to get used to but I am having a good time trying to remember names that are like normal latin names not like Ixquetep.  I do realize that I actually really liked my time in Chirijox.  Although, I left in the perfect amount of time.  Three changes there was sufficient.  This Sunday was my first time having church in Spanish.  I enjoyed understanding it rather than listening to it in Kiche where I didn't know what was being said.

Today we went to a music store and I played a musicman stingray bass guitar for a while.  Then we went to the huge market and looked around at all of the cool stuff that the people have to offer here.  They basically have all of the cool stuff to buy here!  I am just trying to practice some self control but we will see how that goes with the amount of time that I am going to have here.  I hope that I get 2 to 3 changes here.  That is 3 months to 4 and a half months.  Then off to explore some of the other cities.  The ward here is amazing too.  I have had 3 different members come up to me and say that they had a noche de hogar already set up with non member friends haha!!!  The work here should be fun and I already love the members here.  I have also found some people that reacted really well to the baptismal challenge here.  I even had a lady say ¨I would like to be baptized like that¨ as she was teary eyed.  Basically I am pumped.  Also the members try to feed us more and with good portions that arent just egg and bean.  Wow, really just a different world.  Polar opposites. I even ate at Wendy's today!  The fast food here is dang better than any of the fast food that you could find in the states.  It's more quality like Astroburger.. haha

My companion is named Elder Thorne.  He is from Spokane Washington.  This is my first gringo comp yet.  He really works harder than the others that I have had.  We have been spending our days just going to every person that he knows and meeting the ward members.  He has one change less than me so we are both pretty new.  I still feel like the little bit that I had  with my super experienced comps is really helping.  He definately knows more vocab than I do because he studied Spanish all throughout high school.  Still I think that I am a little more comforable speaking than he is.  That's probably because of my latino comps.  Though the accent here took a second to get used too.  We definately have different teaching styles.  He is more into feeling comfortable with the people before doing anything more than teaching.  I like to just get down to business a little faster than he does. I am definitely a lot more direct about all of the things that we teach as well.  With commitments that we extend too.  I think it is because I got tired of all of the crap that the people in Chirijox tried to say to get out of commitments.  Also if I wasn't direct then they would not understand me in Chirijox.  Just stating things in simplicity seems to have a lot more effect for the people out here as well.  My comp is buena onda.  Cool kid, just wish I wasn't senor companion already.  

I have been able to use some of my Kiche so that I could fall well with some of members here who aren't from the city.  Also I was able to get a really good contact from being able to help this old couple make tortilla because I learned how to in my past area.  The people here are super nice but they are just more busy with normal life stuff.  Door knocking is a flat out waste of time out here.  I will be sticking with the members to get help... thank you very much ahha.  I feel a little bit like I am in a European type scene.  At least I will be well rounded right of the bat in my mission having been in two totally different areas. Good for aldea and city.

I feel like I get more and more tired with each passing morning.  Then the new area just makes me feel almost weak in the mind.  All new names, ways of living, and language.  I feel culture shock coming from the stix more than I felt it going out ot the middle of nowhere.

We share the area with the secretaries of the mission.  One of them is an Elder that I was good friends with back in district Nahuala.  Now I get to see him almost everyday! And his comp is a good dude as well.  They are Elder Guitierez and Elison.  They are both from the states and are super funny.  That's another thing about the people here! They are super funny haha!  I just love their jokes!  I can definately tell that they are born and raised spanish speakers just by how they can crack off joke after joke.

The house is good.  I liked the one back in Chirijox better but this one works well for its intended purpose. I just wish that the study room wasn't the kitchen and living room.  The bathroom is nicer however.  The shower head is amazing compared to my last one!!  I am having a hard time getting to studying on time because of it haha!  I might have to start showering in the night so I can just relax in the hot steam for a while.  The other houses that I have seen don't have a shower head like this so hay que provechar.  

One of the biggest differences in teaching out here is the Book of Mormon.  I can use it!  The people here can read!  And they can understand what they read!  I was used to just teaching the BoM as a side note because of how nobody could read or could understand it.  Now I can do my challenging and I can give out Books of Mormons.  We also have and unlimited supply of books because we are with the secretaries.  We we run out of books we can get like 40 more by the end of the day haha!  Also I am getting pretty skilled with the Bible.  I quote it and can use 2 or more scriptures for every single point that there is to teach.  I freaking love having such good tools.  Just automatic ethos with the people as I whip out the book that nobody out here questions ahha.  Hebrews 11 and Romans 6 are just about my favorites right now.  Gotta give a hand to James 2 as well.

Jenna!  you are nuts!  If I had to think of a place that was sketchier than Guate I would say Cambodia...  That should be a good experience haha.  I have no clue how that is going to be working out but I wish you the best for when you actually have to fly out there haha!  And the patriarchal blessing is something dang useful.  I try to read mine once a day just to keep myself pumped up!.  Have you read mine?  If not, go ahead.  Should be in my locker.  Immediate family gets to read it is how I roll.

Jonny!  There is some super sick stuff out here in the city.  Mask that are huge and hand carved that cost like 15 bucks haha!!  I have also seen some sick machetes with hand made leather cases!  Also the music store here actually has some pretty sick drum stuff.

Jayden!  I am excited to be in the big city out here.  I feel like I can really relate to you out here better.  Really a lot of the streets just remind me of a more sketchy looking Europe. Usually all the buildings are just two or three stories tall but they are all tight together and there are a few bigger buildings.  Imagine like a smaller and a little more cramped Salt Lake city without skyscrapers.

Mom!  You hit it dead on with your guess.  I am in civilization.  I could even find some 70Q soccer shoes that were bigger than size 39 haha.  And I definately have all the food that I could even eat.  And then if you add in member meals I am going to gain weight back out here haha.  Also there are tons of super cool typical clothes out here!  You and jenna would have a great time just seeing all of the cool stuff that there is in the market.  And having 20 bucks to spend out here feels like having 80 haha.  I just bought a scarf made of typical materiels after having bartered the price down haha!  This first Pday here has be super fun.  Also the book that you gave me is exactly what my mission president uses to explain faith as he tries to build up our faith.  He is always quoting it but he never said where it came from.  Now I know haha.

Dad!  Puedo entender todo lo que tu escribas.  Esta llegando a ser mas y mas fácil a pensar en español.  The people out here talk in Vos a ton out here!  I now remember how the little Spanish that you taught me when I was a kid was in vos now.  sentate vos!  Ha its good and funny stuff.  I cant wait to really hone my Spanish with this people.  I am actually even nervous to talk here because the people say I have a different accent.  At the very least the lessons are super easy to teach nowadays.  Just honing what I know now!  Its just that my greenie comp is still running on a US schedule.  That is that he is at the citas 5 minutes before time haha!  I got to see the little bit more laid back side from my latino comps.

Love you guys!!!

Elder Miles

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