Monday, September 20, 2010

Waterfall! September 20, 2010

Zone Pday activity-Waterfall Hike!
All the Gringo Elders singing the National Anthem!

Hey guys,

Sorry that i am late writing this week, we all went to a waterfall as a zone this morning! It was pretty sweet, although the water was pretty gross haha. Oh well it´s not like I could have swam anyways. But yeah this week has been pretty normal, just enjoying my last little bit here in San Miguel. It really will be pretty sad to leave, I have gotten to know a lot of people that I´ve grown really close to and care about so yeah when it comes down to it, it will be tough to leave. I´m getting nervous as to where I'll be sent! I´m almost positive that it will be in the city. My buddy who was my zone leader in Lyco is now assistant and came to the zone last week to do divisions with everybody and I got to be with him for about half a day so that was really fun! I told him that he has to take care of me and send me to a sweet area with a good companion haha. He told me he´ll do his best.

Sounds like you guys have had a pretty crazy week, I'm really sorry to hear about grandpa... poor guy. Tell him I love him and that I hope everything works out well. I can´t believe he broke his femur!! That´s incredible that an 87 year old man had to have surgery and is doing well... I'm sure with the help of a lot of prayers. So have they told you guys that he´ll have to be in a wheelchair for a while or what´s going to happen with that? I can´t imagine how stressed out Grandma must be with all of this... how´s her back doing? I will definitely keep both of them in prayers!

Gosh it sooo weird that people in my grade are getting married.... i feel like I'm still 12. And probably still act like it haha! Me and Nate were saying that we´re not getting married for at least a while haha, so remind me about that promise when I get home. I can´t believe that I'm coming up on a year.... it kinda scares me that I'm almost half way done! I still have a ton to learn. I always looked at return missionaries like brilliant accomplished adults with their lives set haha. I've got a long ways to go to get to that point! But I have learned and grown an insane amount in the last 10 short months and know it´ll just keep getting better. Thanks for all your love and support I miss and love you all!
Love Nick

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

In come the tanks! September 13, 2010

Tanks for gang security
Rolondito's birthday (his cook's son)
Original Spanish Book of Mormon (above and below)

Hey fam,
Well this week has been a little crazy! A law was passed here in El Salvador against the gangs saying that just being a part of a gang is now a crime and they can put you in jail just for finding out you´re a part of the gang (or have any tatoos of it ec), as apposed to how it has been up until now where you have to get caught doing something to get in trouble. So needless to say the gangs didn´t like that and let it show. They burned a bunch of buses in the capital and one here and killed a whole bunch of people. Tuesday, Wednsday and Thursday there were absolutely no buses or micro buses (which means there is nothing in the streets if you´ve been to El Salvador), because they said if anybody runs the buses they will kill them and burn the bus. Soooo needless to say we had to be in the house and 7 at night pretty much this whole week and the work was extremely slow. Everytime we knocked on a door they would just look at us weird and say "you know... you shouldn't be on the streets today, go home and come back another time." The country actually told everybody to stay indoors after 6pm, so yeah absolutely a ghost town!! It was super weird. I never thought that I would live in a country where the bad guys have more power than the good guys. That´s literally how it is. If they say there aren´t buses.. there aren´t buses.

But other than that everything else has been good this week. Dad it was funny you mentioned the reactivating thing because we actually reactivated a family this Sunday that hasn´t been to church in 4 years! I found them like a month and a half ago and I couldn´t get them to budge, the Mom just kept making excuses like she has to do wash and make breakfast in the morning, so she doesn´t have time blah blah blah. So I made her a deal and said that I come to her house super early Sunday morning, wake up her family, and cook the breakfeast while they got ready. She agreed just because I think she didn´t think I would do and would be impressed if I did. Well we did it and they went to church, haha it was sweet. So hopefully they keep going!

I was at a recent converts house the other day and we got talking about how long ago the missionaries first visited him and he said it was super super long ago and that he actually still has the book of mormon they give him. So he brought it out and it is sooo sweet and so old looking! He saw how much I liked it and just gave it to me! I´m going to send you a picture of it! It´s gotta be the first edition in spanish ever made. (Dad don´t get offended if these are the ones that you passed out on your mission haha!)

That´s cool that Conner Winters got called to the same mission as Jeremy! One more guy to speak spanish with when I get back haha. How´s grandma and grandpa on both sides? Tell them all I say hi! haha I had to laugh pretty hard when I read what Will Naegle said to Nate. To avoid that little problem here my president held up the missionary hand book in a meeting and said " while you're on the mission, these ARE commandments." haha good old Papi Perez. Well guys I'm glad that everything is going well I think about you all a lot. 10 months on Saturday! pretty nuts. Love you all I´ll talk to ya next week!
Love Nick

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Crazy Week! September 6, 2010

Hey fam!
Well sounds like a pretty busy week for you guys again. I feel like so much has changed at home since i have been gone! I dont think im hardly going to recognize some of the things that are going on and just the way life is for you guys now! Pretty weird how much can change in such a short amount of time.

Well this week has been pretty good for me, I had to do three baptismal interviews on thursday which was really cool, and really sad. The first one I went to was for a lady that has aids. We showed up to her house and we knocked on the door and she wasn´t answering. We could kind of hear something through the window so we peeked through and saw her lying on her bed, clearly in bad shape. We called her name but she wouldn´t answer and her body was just in a way weird position. So we no joke ran about two miles to find her family to try and get keys to the house. When we got there we talked to the mom and we told her that her daughter is super sick and that she needs to come with us to open the house so we can help her. The mom said "It´s my turn to visit her every two days and im scared of crossing the bridge so i´ll just go tomorrow..." I couldn't believe she didn´t really care at all. So her 11 year old son was actually on his way there to give her food so we went with him there. I dont think he really understand the sickness that she has so I was talking to him about how if his mom is bleeding or has anything like that you CANT touch her or he could get really sick. So when we got there we opened the door and went into her room was she was just about dead. She could barely utter a word and her head was just hanging off the bed. So we tried to call an ambulence but the only hospitals that have ambulences here are the private ones and the family doesn´t have money to have her there, so we ran and got a taxi. It took about an hour to get her from the front door to the taxi because she really didn't have any will power, she just wanted to die. When we lifted her up her back we could clearly see that she hadn't even moved for about a week, her family hadn't been doing anything besides her 11 year old son! Well we finally got her to the taxi and off to the hospital. I have no idea what happened to her but I would not be surprised at all if she died. So sad. 28 with three kids. It was a super weird feeling being around someone that sick in that bad of circumstances.. you should see the house she was in.

After that i went and did the other two interviews and they passed with flying colors. It was really cool to do the interview i enjoyed it a lot! My convert Miguel got the Melchezidek priesthood last week!!! So sweet. It was cool to see him progress and he is preparing to go on a mission. fruits baby! Early this week I had to go take out a birth cirtificate for an investigador in another area and the city where she was born is right by the beach so I saw the beach!!!! sooooo sweet ah it was so good to see the ocean. I´ll try and send you some pictures of that.
So Angie is going to BRASIL!!!!!!!!!! that´s so nuts....! she´ll love it though, it is sweet being in a foreign country. I have definitely had my eyes opened here. I just found out that in the month of August there were 376 murders.... in ONE month. And a member was explaining the me the cayote system of how people from here and Mexico and get smuggled into the US. It is a legit business! Pretty crazy. It was really good to get the emails from Dani and Ashley! Whenever they come over tell them to write me, even it is during the week so that I can hear from them as much as possible! Well other than that everything is going well here. 6 months is a long time but im staying strong. haha but yeah mom what you said about the one ward thing that's how it is here too, we are assigned to only one ward. The area is usually pretty big but yeah I go to the same ward every week. I've got some good people that we are working with right now, so we´ll see how it plays out in the next few weeks. I love you all thanks for your love and support. I couldn't be here without it. Seriously! Talk to ya next week! Portense bien

love nick

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Back to School- August 30, 2010

Making smoothies at a member's house
Nick and one of his favorite members at her pupusarie
Nick's cook's cute little boy (Nick likes to call him Chancho off of Nacho Libre)
View of the volcanoe. He walks up this path everyday for breakfast and dinner.

Hey everyone,
Well sounds like you have all had a pretty busy week!! Boys sorry it´s back to school time haha. This week has been pretty good for me, and pretty busy. We had stake conference on Saturday and Sunday which went pretty well. It´s a bit frustrating at times here because the leaders just aren´t as organized as they are in Utah, so confusion and disorder are pretty common! Half of the meeting the microphone wasn´t even working, people were getting up off the stand to go and answer their phone, kids were running up and down the isles and the parents weren't doing a thing, yada yada yada. Haha but with time I know the church will get more and more organized as it gains time and experience. The José guy was baptized, but he actually wasn´t in my ward. We found out at the last minute that he actually lives in the boundries of my ZLs, and so they were the ones who finished up the teaching and baptized him. I was kind of mad but that kind of thing is pretty strict here, just so that the whole word doesn´t go to one ward over the other over little things like not getting along with a leader.

So I've been getting a lot of complaining about the whole Arizona immigration thing. Supposedly they are shipping out any illegal immegrants and there were quite a few from El Salvador, so yeah almost everytime I talk to someone that gets brought up and they somehow act like I have a say in it. I finally kind of blew up yesterday and told a guy "well maybe if they weren´t breaking the law and just got citizenship papers it wouldn´t happen. That´s how it is in the States, you break a law and there´s a puinishment.. not like here where if you kill somebody you are in jail for 6 months maximum." Haha so yeah that kept him quiet. Also I guess a group of 72 people headed for the states got murdered by gangs in Mexico. Man there are some evil people out there. So did you guys really not get any of my pictures last week?? I sent like 10! I will make sure to send them again this week.
Well other than what i have told you everything is going well here and im just sticken out my last month in San Miguel. I can´t believe that I will have been here for a fourth of my mission! crazy. hey do you know what I was thinking about? I will be coming home the 23rd of November and Thanksgiving is the 24th... how is that going to work out if you guys want to come and get me..? Let me know what you think. As for my health im doing just fine. Im skinnier than I would like to be but at least im not sick. Well guys I love you all and thanks for all of your support. Keep being obedient and doing the little things! talk to ya next week,
love Nick