9 Jul

i love you! and i still miss you a ton.

my real companion for this 9 weeks had been hermana vogel. she is sweet and wonderful and our being together was definitely inspired, as she is real patient with me as i try not to be an uppity little punk when confronted with so many new little rules. but i have gotten a lot better with this obedience thing. she is funny. we have a good time. i will be sad when, in TWELVE DAYS, when i LEAVE THE MTC, we wont be comps anymore. but that will be my only point of sorrow in leaving this place.
dont get me wrong, the staff is nice, the food is safe, and we have toilet paper, and i appreciate that, but i am pretty much over being in class for ten and a half hours a day with a bunch of 19 year olds. but dont get me wrong again, many of them, most of the time, act pretty decently. but yeah. i will love to be a real missionary and have real people who really need my help.

i am sorry not to have been able to be there for the 4th. i will likewise be sorry to be missing out on other holidays, such as thanksgiving. i spent about 2 hours in class last week daydreaming of your thanksgiving dinners. oh, the things i am sacraficing for the spreading of the gospel.

but yeah. i am ready to go. it didnt help last friday, when first thing in class, our teacher showed us a learninig progress chart for our class that showed we had already learned everything they intended to teach us— 2.5 weeks early. it was not particularly motivational.

it also doesnt help that, cuz of the GRIPE … pronounced gree´pay, or the swine flu, the whole of beunos aires is shut down, including church services for the locals and school and… proseliting for the inmates at the mtc.

a part of me nearly died when i found that out. so i will be cooped up in here for all of the next 12 days.

it also doesnt help that for lunch today, because its argentinas 4th of july of sorts, the chef made us traditional food for lunch—

menudo. you know, like, cow stomach soup.

when i looked down to my bowl, i whispered to one of the elders its identity. he turned pale, and scolded me not to make it publically known, in hopes that others might ignorantly enjoy their exotic new lunch. eventually we all figured it out, and i spent my lunch sneaking the chunks of stomach into napkins to casually slip into the trash. i just couldnt do it. yet. i mean, i will probably have to in the feild anyway, so… why start now?

we went tracting last saturday for our last time in argentina, and it was sort of lame. we had one good conversation first thing in the morning, and for the rest of the day, everybody just hit on us. it was all men in the streets. and they were all straight up hitting on us. i am not flattering myself. they were gross, and it was kind of frustrating.

speaking of flattering ones self, i nearly told an elder not to do so the other day. his comp made a joke about us attacking him. he said he had locked his heart and could resist us. i bit my tongue pretty hard.

i do finally really feel like i am in a foreign country though. mostly because i am becoming more acquainted with the culture. our teacher taught us the other week one of his favorite figures of speech.

´i have been working like a negro´. or n-word. both are commonly accepted, and not considered racist in the least.

also it is ok to call someone the anticristo or tell them to va a infierno (go to hell).

sweet. i love latin america.

and my spanish is coming pretty good, i think. i understand most people most of the time unless they are talking in technical terms, like medical or trades or whatnot. and i can DEFINITELY talk about the gospel. my teachers tell me i talk fluidly like a latina. i hope they are sincere.

uh, what else? oh, there are new n americans, and a poor girl from riverton is in our room. every time i say anything to her, even if i think its tame, it startles her and rocks her country music little world and a part of her dies. i feel bad. oh well. somebody has to tell her about frida kahlo, right?

other than that, i have a list of things i would like to have sent. but i will wait to ask cuz i have no idea where i will be in a week and a half. pray for me that i will go somewhere cool. where i will not have to learn a dialect just yet.

i pray for you and the other kids all the time, and i want the best for all of you! i miss you!

love, allison.

ps- oh, and another hilight of the week was when the elders in my district and i had a class-wide competition to see who could go the longest speaking nothing but spanish. i won. and everybody else crapped out in 3 hours. i am all kinds of proud of myself. and one of the elders had to buy me an alfajor. alfajores are little cake and dulce de leche gifts from heaven that sustain the sugar-starved north americans in their hell-oh, i mean heck(!)ish time at the mtc. we get to buy them at the hostel by the temple on p days. i love them. google them for pictures and a better description. we barter with them and war over them like some tribes have over seashells and other such precious goods. those layer caked dulce de leche dreams are really a symbol of hope for us all.
this place is still endlessly weird.



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