So I will start by apologizing for not writing last week! It wasnt
because I didnt want to, its because I couldnt!! I had to go up to
Hermosillo to get my green card. A trip to Hermosillo is a good 6
hours. So 12 hours total travel, plus the whole day I spent up there.
And they cant call us up for that on a day when we should be working,
so they called us all up on p day. So that is why you didnt get an
email. Not because I got bit by a dog, stabbed by a drunk, or deathly
ill from bad water. However, I did eat some nasty stuff called
chicharrones. That us just straight up, pure fried pigs fat. So I got
sick, puked in the middle of the night, and had a black tongue when I
woke up the next morning. There are many suprises on this work. Like
last minute calles to Hermosillo, bad food, and SUPRISE BAPTISMS! We
have been teaching a lady named Irene lately. She is one of the
investigators who is actually progressing that we havent dropped. The
work is kind of slow right now. Anyways, we were with Irene on friday.
She has had all the lessons, and we were running out of stuff to
teach. So we went with the plan of reading some of the Book of Mormon.
When we get there, she was triying to figure out hymns and stuff. So
we taught here about the hymn book. During this, Elder Rea said he
wanted to sing a song and play the guitar at her baptism for her. The
date was set for April 7th. But jokingly, Elder Rea asked, "its
tomorrow, right?" And Irene says, "Yeah, Ill get baptized tomorrow."
After a few seconds, we realized she was serious! So we prepped all
that day and Saturday, I baptized her! It was an amazing experiance.
The weight of what happened didnt occur to me until later. I was the
tool in the Lords hand in the passing of the key to the gate of Heaven
to this daughter of God. Basically. I am trying to put on pictures,
but the computer is all chafa. Which basically means lame. Oh, about
the packages and stuff. If you can, use something like DHL. Dad will
know more about that. And put the Virgin Mary on the box. The
superstition is real. With luck, Ill get the package only partially
looted. But yeah, dont go with regular us postal service. That will
get stolen big time. Companies like DHL are safer. And religious stuff
keeps the thieves away. Another thing, you can put US dollars on my
card and I can withdraw as pesos! I found that out today. After living
2 weeks without a centavo to my name. Literally, my companion and I
washed dishes with shampoo, and washed clothes with us in the shower.
We were poorer than poor! Hitch hiking to get anywhere. Then I found a
small fourtune worth of pesos on my b of a card :) So I bought lunch.
12 tacos, 3 sodas, all for about 10 bucks. Awesome. Love it here when
I have money! Mexico really isnt that dangerous. So dont worry, mom.
Even the Fariseos leave us alone. There are certain people here that
dress up as "pharasees" this month. It is an indigenous Catholic,
twisted crazy tradition that people here dont even understand. They
dress up in long robe things, wear bells on their feet, bang drums as
they run around the city, in masks covering their faces made of animal
fur. They look kind of scary. Oh, and they get together in groups of 2
to 30. And just run around. Some stories exists of beating people, and
parading crosses with bloody clothes in the streets. But I havent seen
that. Thank goodness. Pictures arent working right now, but I will
have a ton next week! Provided I dont get transfered. Because this is
the last week of the "cambio" as we call it. It is pretty hot here,
and getting hotter! Luckly, this is a cooler part of the mission. But
cooler here still translates to over 100. Que chafa. We went to a the
other area of our district to play soccer with another zone of
missionaries today. It was great! I love the elders in this mission.
Everyone is so cool. Even the lazy (frito as the missionary lingo
goes) ones can be pretty funny. I have little bracelets to send my
AWESOME SISTERS! Cheap little things with 3 mexico color beads. But I
think they are cool. The thing about send stuff here and there, is a
simple letter costs 20 pesos. Thats 2 bucks! So Im not sure when I
will send the bracelets. Perhaps when I have more to send. That is why
I havent hand written anything to you guys. Oh hey claud, thank you
for you awesome emails like always :) and way to break dads foot,
goober! And on that note, so typical of him to walk around on it for a
while. Just like YEARS ago when he broke it without knowing and
wonered why his ankle always felt sprained! Thats my family :) I love
and miss you all. I always pray to hear from you. So you can send that
package whenever you want. The office elders are great about getting
stuff out to people. Just make sure you send stuff safely. Like I
said, dad should know about that. So here is a funny story. I was
contacting in this plaza one night with Elder Rea. I was trying to get
over fear of just waltzing up to people blabbering in Spanish. So we
talked to this man selling hot dogs. Now hot dogs here are a story of
their own. First, the bun is huge and fried. 2 hotdogs in a bun. And
you cover it in cheese, slasa, tomatoes, guacamole, and tons of stuff
like that. AWFUL for you, but amazingly good. So we talked to thise
man. Rafael or something. I wanted to come up with a cool analogy of
why we need to keep Gods commandments. My companion stopped talking,
and looked at me. My cue to do stuff. So, I went with what my
imagination said. Looking at the dogs in the frying pan, I asked why
he cooks hot dogs. He said to make money and for work, all that stuff.
So I asked how is work would go if the hot dogs ran around all over
the place and didnt let Rafael cook them. He looked at me like I was
the craziest gringo he has ever met. And I probably am, because he did
NOT get where I was going with the run away hot dogs. So I scratched
that idea, testified of going to church, and we left. I asked Elder
Rea why the man didnt understand my analogy, and, well, Elder couldnt
tell me why because he didnt understand either! It was so embarrasing!
But absolutly hilarious at the same time. I learned to either have a
simple, well known analogy, or just none at all. It was ridiculous.
But now we have a funny memory to laugh at. Im jsut glad I wasnt at
the pulpit making a dumb analogy, losing the saints in the branch! Oh,
btw, I spoke last sunday. In the branch. In spanish. I was horrified.
But some members like it. The ones that showed and werent chasing
their kids around. So I am learning how important it is to have great
members. There is a lady we have being trying with to go to church.
After 3 weeks, she finally did! But told us she didnt like it because
the congregation kept messing up "Count You Blessings" BIG time. Off
tune, off time. So we dont know what to do with her now. But the
singing was so bad, the branch pianist stood up after sacrament and
CHEWED OUT the congregation! She has total reason though. Hymns are
prayers to God, and we arent just singing, but praying as well. So,
she told everyone to come back at 4 o clock to learn how to sing. And
everyone did. Oh, btw, this branch pianist is 15 years old. Rea and I
were astonished! Not because of her audacity, but her courage. Because
we both agreed with what she said. We fight about who is going to
return for her ;) One thing I am working on here. You all know how
talkative I am. How I ALWAYS got in trouble in school for my mouth, as
mom loves to say. Who would have guessed that I would be dead silent
most of the day? Me! of all people! I always have something to say,
but I worry about saying it wrong and looking dumb because the people
here dont really try to understand me. If I met someone who spoke
broken english, I would try my best to understand them and what they
are saying. Not so here. So I need to work on speaking up. Because I
can say stuff in Spanish. I just dont. I know what I need to work on.
The mission is about constantly bettering yourself in every aspect you
can. Recognizing what you lack, being humble, and do what you can to
recevie to Lords help. So, that is my life in a nutshell right now! Oh
btw, I ate a shark taco. SO. GOOD. I really dont know how, but tiburon
is bien rica. But it is about time to go now. I love you all so much.
Keep reading and praying as a family. And Individually. The Book of
Mormon is so crucial if we want to truely be Latter-Day Saints. There
is a verb in Spanish. Acercarse. It basically means "to make closer"
but doesnt have an exact english equivenlent. So, the Book of Mormon
is the MOST POWERFUL tool you can use as a family to "se acercan" to
Jesus Christ. So keep it up, mi familia querida. Send that package!
With American candy, like redvines :) Until next week! Vayan bien,
vayan con Dios!
Con amor, Elder Marsh