Glad to hear things are good there. I feel like Im in a completely different world down here, well I guess it is haha. Things are super good though! My companion is Sarah Buckner from West Jordan Utah. She is so fun, she went to Utah State (was an ambassador for living on campus thing) and she is a super good missionary. Hard worker, super fun and nice. We get along really well.
I´m in a ward called Villa Primavera. It´s outside Santiago, kind of a smaller town but it´s only about 10 min on the metro into Santiago. (I would tell you more if I actually knew where is was but I just take the metro having no idea where I´m going with 3 different lanes of metros and follow my companion haha) The area we are in- there hasn´t been Sisters there in anywhere from 5-30 years (we have heard all sorts of numbers from the members) but they are super good to us. There are a lot of single women and women whos husbands aren´t memebers so they love it because we can finally come over to their house for lunch. Everyday we have lunch with a memeber. It´s super great to get to know them and they are all super nice even though I dont really know what they are saying half the time :)
I´m still with Hermana Evans. There are 4 of us living together and we just split our sector that the 2 elders used to cover and now there are 4 Hermanas there. So it´s super small but it kinda makes it nice. Its amazing how fast you get used to the different way of life though. It seems like I have always just woken up, climbed out the window, and hooked up the gas so I can take a warm shower (because before they changed the water heater- dang was it cold) but ya life is good. They wash the dishes like I do :) Well they never use warm water or soap, they basically just rinse them off and put them back in the cupboard haha its funny. Lets see what else have I noticed.... It´s a lot like Mexico kind of a mixture of Chet and Cancun. There are nice houses and not so nice houses but they are all small and simple. I like where I´m serving because it´s not super super ghetto (or as they say here flite) and it´s not rich. But my comp said that its pretty much the most ghetto place that they will send sisters to.
I¨m going to send this and if you are on you can write back but I¨ll send another one in a min...
Ok so ya we are in downtown Santiago right now. We had a zone activity this morning where we played capture the flag and had hot dogs- I¨ve already had more hot dogs than I have ever had in my life haha but they aren´t too bad. And my transformer burned up so we came here to change my money and buy a straightner, blowdryer, and sock. I don´t need any money though. I have plenty for the moment. I will probably use my cash because you can only exchange it in Santiago and so after today I¨ll be set.
We had 4 investigators at church yesterday!!! One of them was from the Elders that were here before- Carolina, she is 9 and super great. Her parents are members but haven´t really been active. She is super excited to to get baptized on the 28th and she is super great. She loves having us over so it´s kinda the highlight of my day too. Then there is Sandali who is 14, she is super good too. She was just interested more about us and yesterday we committed her to be baptized on Dec 5. We are also trying to teach her friend Steven who is 10 (he came to church too) he really likes meeting with us (in Sanalis house) but his parents don´t want him to so I´m not sure if he will be able to come much more. I hope he does though.
My Spanish is not ready for Chile! But oh well I´m here and it´s definitely interesting but I´m trying to just keep at it. People don´t really know what I´m saying have the time but they are nice about it- then my companion repeats what I said because they have no idea what I just said haha it´s an interesting process. I can´t wait til some day I´ll be able so say what I want to say.
Time has already passed by super fast. I have been learning lots in the field and we have a training at the mission home on Friday so that will probably help. Also Elder Corrbige (I have no idea how to spell that) is coming so we are having a conference with him and he is also talking in the stake where I´m at on Sunday. So that will be nice to listen to something in English :)
As far as Christmas goes. I don´t really know what to tell you. The mission pretty much gives us everything we need. But if you do send something just send it regular- cheapest way because my comp said that is the best way- it actually gets here and it doesn´t cost both arms and legs. If you really need ideas- I´m always wearing those small dress socks that don´t show a whole lot. I don´t like the really thin ones that don´t cover anything because they fall off but I really don´t need anything so don´t worry. I also can´t think of things the members need. Sorry I´m not any help but we are just well taken care of :) The Elders in the office love us and will do pretty much anything we ask... we got new chairs in our apt and a new fan...life is good. Everything is pretty much the same here. It is really hot but people say it´s only spring and it gets super hot in Dec and Jan so that will be interesting. I can´t image a week ago when I was freezing my butt off... I got sunburned a couple days ago- not bad but just a little pink. Wow crazy huh.
How are things there? Congrats on the part Annie! That is so cool- I´m sure you will do awesome. Do you have a lot of snow up there? This keyboard is super hard to get used to so sorry if things are wrong. I´m slowly getting used to everyone using the word po- I have no idea when to use it but oh well we aren't really supposed to use it anyway but sometimes we do just so we don´t sound like such foreigners. Another word they use is fome (don´t know how to spell that either) but it means lame- people use it all the time. Oh, I forgot to talk about the other lady that came to church her name is Jauna we just met her in the street, we contacted here and asked if there was anything we could do to help her, she said I don´t need help but I know some people who do, and she took us to 2 peoples houses where we shared a song and a scripture- and we got appts with both this coming week. And she was inviting everyone to church haha it was awesome. She liked church a lot but it was super hard because my comp was playing the piano and I was sitting there with 3 investigators that I couldnt´really talk to so when they had questions it was hard but I think they all liked it, so thats good.
Also we are starting classes. The other Hermanas (Evans and her comp Juarez from Argentina) are doing English lessons and me and my comp are doing piano lessons. They are on Saturdays so that will be fun we have had lots and lots of people that want to come so hopefully I´ll remember something about my piano lessons so I can help them :)
We are working with members active and inactive. We have a list of 28 pages of members and only 78 at church but I hear thats pretty good so who knows. Whats the funniest is when people forgot that they were baptized until we start talking with them then they remember and say oh ya- we tell them to come to church and then maybe the next time they see Missionaries they might at least remember that they are members.
Here the big meal is lunch. They have HUGE lunches, it´s like a Sunday dinner every day but I´ve had pretty good things. Nothing super out of the ordinary... well out of the ordinary for here. Like salad of lima beans and onions. But they aren´t too bad, just eat whats in front of you and it´s all good. I ate my first completo this week. Its a hot dog with tomatoes on top, a ton of avacados mushed up and a ton a ton of mayo (the mayo is a little different, its like more runny). It wasn´t too bad they only thing I didn´t like was the mayo but mixed in with the bite of hot dog it´s not too bad. I also like the cheese empanadas. they are really good. It´s like in Mexico when there are tiendas every block so if we are dying we can just stop and get something. We have a store pretty close to our house that is kinda like Walmart. Its called Liter and so we go there on p days to get our stuff. The only hard thing is carrying it back 10 blocks but thats probably nothing and it´s not too bad. The church is only 3 or 4 blocks from our house to that is super nice and everyone knows where it is because ít´s the nicest building in town. haha What else to tell you... everything is good! I´m loving it and though its hard not being able to communicate with people its ok. There are moments that make up for all the rude people and the heat and everything. When you get to help someone realize the importance of Christ in their lives everything comes together and it´s all worth it.
I´m excited to be here, Hermana Buckner celebrates her 1 year mark this week. She said it goes by super fast and I believe it. I know it can only get better :) Thanks for all your love and support!!! Ya'll are amazing and I hope everything is going good. Let me know if there is anything you need or want from Chile- it is pretty sweet so I wouldn´t blame you if you wanted something ;) haha
I have no idea whats going on in the world around me so feel free to tell me anything that goes down... Every Wed. on the main street in town they have a food market and then every Sat and Sun they have a vending market, but they usually start late in the afternoon when we are busy, so we just use our p day to buy stuff we want.
I probably won´t write the same time next week because this week was diff with the activity and going into town but I do get Dear Elder and letters every Tuesday so that is super nice. I´m still working on converting the money but from what I know things are about the same price here as in the States. Maybe a little cheaper for somethings like vendors selling necklaces for 2 dollars. but generally about the same. I´m getting used to using milk from a box and the ketchup, mustard and mayo from little bags that look like Werthers candies bags with a little lid thing on the side you squirt it out of. There are no plastic bottles here except for the soda and stuff. Jam and salsa and everything come in those bags. But life here is good. I´m loving every min and hope that I catch on to things fast. I´m glad I´m not in down town Santiago, its crazy here and I have no idea what is going on but I like my little town, even though its big and just kind of a sector of Santiago its more chill and more layed back. Oh it was funny today for capture the flag the Elders led us to this park where all these homeless people live, it was super funny watching our backpacks while playing just to make sure no one stole them. We have a super nice park a few blocks from our house but it´s closed on Monday so we couldn´t go there. My sector (area) also reminds me of Mexico- we needed copies of our map and we went to every store in town and they didn´t do copies but told us the store down there and over there do but they didn´t and they told us a different story when we asked.. I couldn´t help but think... this is so like Mexico all over again. hahaha... good times.
What else... sorry I just keep rambling and then something will pop in my head so I´m all over the place but I hope it makes some sense and kinda gives you an idea of life here. Here are some pictures... the one of the land was on our first day, the bus ride to the mission home, then there is one of my comp and me, my bathroom and kitchen after hours of cleaning (nasty elders who don´t clean) I will send more interesting ones next week hopefully. I was just so proud of our apt. when we got done cleaning so I had to take pics haha there is a window on the left side of the picture of our stove, that is the window we climb out of to switch the gas. But ya life is good here and I hope its the same there, keep me updated and know that I LOVE YOU and am super super grateful for all your prayers because I couldn´t do it without you!!!!!!!! TE AMO TE AMO TE AMO MUCHO!!!!!
Steph - your favorite missionary :)