Archive | January, 2010
25 Jan


to be fair, i did not see the snake… but… it was a closed container on the 2nd floor of an apartment building… so my guess would be that it was a parasite.  don´t real snakes hatch from eggs, anyway? there were no eggs in the tupper when we closed it.

so… uh… what´s new? not much. i´m just, uh… still learning a lot. our investigator is still super rad, and we´ve met a bunch of really great other ones, too.

i´ve been studying a lot, teaching a lot… eating a lot of gross food…

and i´ve been learning a lot about Christlike love for my fellow man. i never thought i was all that harsh with other people, but… i mean, if i felt like somebody hated me or something, i didn´t go out of my way to be nice to them.

then my comp and i were reading in the bible, cuz the lds spanish speaking world is all SUPER enthused about the new translated complete lds bible… and we were reading in… luke (? i still am horrible with scripture references– every time i manage to find a scripture in a lesson i know it´s directly thanks to the spirit) 6… and Christ´s talking and says, ´if you love them who love you, that´s no big deal. even the sinners do that. you must love them that hate you´. (of course, it wasn´t exactly phrased like that, but that´s what you get when i am doing the translating.)

it struck me pretty hard. Christ´s ability to love is infathomable. every time a person treats me bad as a missionary who has come only to do them good, i think of Him. He suffered the sins of, and died for, the very same people who wanted to kill him.

that leaves me without room to judge or deny my kindness to anybody ever again so long as i shall live. otherwise i´m just another sinner, and i want to be better than that.

so yeah. that´s one of the things i learned this week. i urge everybody to get to know the Lord better… cuz i promise, he´s waiting. and he´s got lots of unimaginable blessings in store for all of you. it´s amazing the miracles he´s worked in my mission. how my perspective on the universe has been completely clarified.

in other news, i have run out of aveeno body wash, and would die for some more safely packed, mailable fish, in any form you can find on sale at smiths. OH and multivitamins. ellen sent me a few, a kind deed for which i shall forever be grateful, and i´ve been rationing them, taking one a week. the other day, we got home at night and i had a crashing headache… so i took a vitamin, and then i was ok. but it´d be nice to be able to take them daily. all i eat is meat and yogurt and soda and crackers and cooking oil, and sometimes tomatos. and hard boiled eggs. they eat hard boiled eggs in everything here. Dan would hate it.

so yeah. other than that, it´s hot… the church is true… and i love you a lot, mom! i love dan and teenie and marshall too. and dad. and my grandparents, and all other family members and friends.



18 Jan

Mom!  I love your groundhog´s day emails. No news is always good news, right? Send the sibs my love, and tell teenie that it´s all gonna work out.

 Ha, getting robbed? Well, it means that i didn´t find any of my Money missing out of our apartment. We´re pretty sure we know who it is who comes in and takes our Money, so we notified the local cops and the neighbors to give her the stink eye if she comes near our apartment again. So don´t worry about it. I still haven´t been robbed yet this month. But yeah.

This golden investigator? She hasn´t stopped blowing my mind. Yesterday, her second time in church, she raised her hand and explained that we Developed our personalities in the premortal existence. She then explained, perfectly, what eternal life is.  She´s incredible.  Elder Bowen noticed her, and our other investigators, and gave a wonderful talk in sacrament about the Godhead.. which is a very common investigator question, a very important principle, and sometimes, a little difficult to explain. It was really good.  It´s amazing what kind of horrible lame things start to happen when something really good starts to happen. We´re being faced with a lot of opposition.  But it´s ok.  In a way, it makes me even more happy to be able to do this.. to help this girl come to know the gospel.  If there´s this much going on to try to frustrate this, this must be something really, really good.  But if anybody would like to pray for me and my comp, I´d be really grateful. .

In other news, in response to the email from grandma Myers (which i thoroughly enjoyed), i can totally relate to praying over your food in hopes that it won´t kill you.

And now i will share my latest story as to why i am terrified of eating around here- The other day, i overdid it with the tasty chocolate milk, and found myself with an upset stomach. My comp, to comfort me, proceded to tell me that she thought i had a parasite, the…blahahablah (i don´t remember the name).  The blahblahblah is a little snake that forms in your stomach, and lives off of the food you eat. The only way to get rid of it is to fast for three days so it gets really really desperately hungry.  Then, bring warm milk to your mouth so the parasite can smell it, and it goes crazy and crawls up your asophogas, then jumps out of your mouth.  This is real.  How did i come to know of its reality?  No, don´t worry, i don´t have it.  BUT….

On new years day a family offered us a tupperware with pork in it.  The pork still had hair and was very fatty, and we did not eat it.  And, this is gross, but we threw it on the outside deck to wash it, then forgot about it.  We got ourselves on a cleaning spree during lunch the other day, and my comp discovered the closed tupperware.  She decided to clean it.  She opened the lid, and within, saw a bunch of weird foam, and the meat was gone without a trace.  Then, out of the foam, jumped a little blackish greyish orangish snake.  Like, a 5 inch long SNAKE with a HEAD.  My comp of course began to shreik and left the tupper open on the counter,  ran to my side, and began to grab me and scream.   I asked her why.  She told me to shut the tupperware, and not knowing what the big deal was,  I did it.  Then she told me, and I laughed at her really hard.  We threw the tupper away,  hoping the family will forget they loaned it to us.  So yeah.  Good thing the hair on that pork grossed me out,  Otherwise that snake would be IN MY STOMACH.  Or my comp´s.   eeeeeeeeeeeeeeew.   It´s moments like this when i miss the States. At least the rotten food there only develops mold and maggots, instead of ANIMALS.   Also,  We have made a vow to be very careful about washing things directly in the moment that we´re thinking about it.  It was all a really educational experience.

Thanks for reminding me I´m almost halfway through my misión, Anne!!  I can´t believe it. I´m also scared cuz they say that the second half passes faster than the first.   WEIRD.

In answer to your question, grandma and grandpa Roach, this girl is totally Uruguayan.  When Uruguay was settled, they did the same thing that the pilgrims did in the US.  They killed almost all the natives.  So most people around here are of Italian and Spanish descent. There are a lot of latin people too, but they´re from Brazilian or Chilean descent.  This girl´s nickname is gringa, though, cuz the people here are delightfully racist, and she is on the blonde side for the folks around here. I get told all the time that i´m a sorry excuse for a gringa cuz i don´t have blonde hair and blue eyes.

I was thinking the other day about all the things the people i have met have called me, and in the middle of my thoughts,  I began to laugh out loud.  I figured out that if I really am everything I´ve been called, I am… An enormous grandote (tall, burley) German woman with the body of the child who is also loaded with hormones and could carry many, many children. And yeah. I think that´s all.

Oh, thank aunt Kandee for the cd! I absolutely love it. My comp and i have been listening to it all week.

Tell grandpa M that my prayers are with him in his surgery and that i love him!


14 Jan

This is what’s cool about having a companion who is half Lebanese.   I might try this out on campus when I get home.

A mud-covered dude in a rainstorm in the street

Laura Bush!!!1

This is me doing a bit of horticulture. Definitely the best thing I’ve found under a grocery bag ever.

I took this hoping to be able to make you guess what this is, but it turns out it’s pretty obvious. But it’s not coffee. It’s like, cebada or malta-that imitation stuff. But it IS art!

This is when it was so hot and humid that when we got to a member’s house, I collapsed on their bed. only for a few minutes.

This is the baptism of Javier. He’s pretty rad.

Visiting Pocitos after the conference with Elder Bednar.

Aparecio! The Japanese Gaucho! He cooked me a special fat-free asado. I hope you’re getting a load of his fridge. Yes, those are Lion King stickers. He put them there himself.

11 Jan

this week was really good.

we met a new investigator, and she is GOLDEN. i love her. she´s a 19 year old single mom. the locals call her gringa. she was really ready when we met her. she understands everything we teach her the first time we teach it, and was almost reading the sheet music of the hymnals the first time she ever went to church yesterday. she´s really special. i think she´s got a really bright future ahead of her. it´s a huge blessing to get to teach her.

other than that? uhm… we´re still teaching a lot of the same smokers, and we´ve found a bunch of new people to teach…

and i think i like uruguay a little better now. or at least pysandú. cuz i found a decent german bakery that sells apple strudel, and i discovered that uruguayan chocolate milk is really good. it tastes like brownie mix.

also, cuz i didn´t get robbed this month. so far.

the other day, when we were waiting for the bus to return from montevideo, we went in to a little bookstore in the terminal, wherein i bought a spanish-german dictionary. i am now learning german again, from spanish. don´t tell me i am not hardcore. i´m not gonna lie, sometimes it´s a pretty big headache… but hey. sometimes i learn spanish words from the german ones i knew.

i also now do almost all of my studying in spanish. i read books and liahonas in spanish and feel completely normal about it. it´s pretty rad.

this week an elder who´d served in my ward a year and a half ago came back with his fiancee and his parents to baptise the 8 year old daughter of one of his converts in our ward. which means i had to translate for a sweet old couple from colorado. which was good to do a little english speaking for a minute there. It was a really weird reality shock to see normal north american people again. I had almost completely forgotten what people like them were like.

also, i´m helping my comp learn english, so we made a rule that we only speak english in the house. i think she´s a genius. she speaks reaaaaallly well.

uh, what else? i´m going to have a local lady make a dress for me… uhhhhhhhhhmmm….

i can´t even begin to explain how terrified i´ve become of the idea of coming home… not only because i´m going to have to try to get a life again, but also because part of getting a life means i´m going to have to finally study all of that math. i still have no idea how that´s going to work out. oh well. i have ten more months to be worry free!!!

oh! elder bowen, from the area presidency is coming to our little ward this sunday! the bishop told us at lunch yesterday cuz he´s terrified. we told him not to worry about it, cuz, i dunno, usually area authorities show up to help and bless the Ward and do nice things like that. We told him to be excited.

Oh, and as you could probably tell from my comment about chocolate milk and Apple strudel, my gallbladder is still behaving splendidly. Thank heavens.

Send dan and teenie and marsh all of my love. I love ýall immensely, and you´re all always in my prayers, and i hope that you all keep on truckin´.

This is our awesome investigator.

This is a dedication to how rad my companion is.

The artsy photos are dedicated to the Madsen family.

NO Transfer!

5 Jan

WOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! the transfers didn´t touch us!! i´m still here! with my rad comp! Looking at 7 months straight in spanish!!!  apparently all of the gringa hermanas have started calling me the phenomenon. they think this is like, the biggest challenge ever. that i am demonstrating like, herculean endurance.  i think that´s funny. apparently its unheard of for a gringa who left for the mission with absolutely no spanish experience to be with latinas 4 changes in a row. honestly, it´s all a lot easier this way. i´m listening and learning all the time. i don´t have to guess what people are saying. it´s all quite nice.
i´m totally and completely stoked out of my brains! seriously. we already know the people here, and have lots of exciting plans for the work, we teach together well… and…
she has another convert who´s going to the temple this change!!   i feel rill blessed.
we went to the temple this week on saturday, 2 sessions in a row, and it was reaaaaaaaalllyyyy nice.   really really nice. it´s totally worth 8 hours in a horrible, uncomfortable, bus that stops in every forsaken Little town in the entire west coast of this country to get there. Totally worth it… to find myself in a place where the spirit is unrestrained. So, everybody, cuz i love you all, go to the temple, in whatever sphere you can.

Also, this week, we finally got in touch with some investigators we had, whom we hadn´t been able to contact for a while. We knocked on the door, and the husband invited us in.
We came in to see his wife, who had been losing her visión, in a state of delerium in a chair in the living room. She´d lost a lot of weight, didn´t remember who we were, and couldn´t support her own head. It was a big life lesson for me… incredible to see the change in someone… someone you know, deteriorating like that… it makes the whole mortality thing a lot more real. Poor thing. It´s a shame that her husband doesn´t listen when we try to teach him about eternal families… about the atonement, about anything… but i know his wife likes it when we sing to her, and that, at least, we can help bring a Little joy into their home. We can at least distract him a Little, give him a break and let him think and talk about other things for a minute. I´m grateful to be able to help them however i can.

So yeah. That was my week.

Other than that, i´m just uh, studying lots. And yeah. Oh, and it´s way hot. Like, i barely slept last night hot. Thanks for telling me that i´m missing out on the BEST Utah Winter ever. Snow-free. It must be beautiful. Watch, next year, we´ll see 3 feet of snow.


My Mermaid Hair