Hey all. This last week was a little hard. We didn't have the success we would have liked to have had. No one came to church ;( it was sad. this means that a few of our baptismal dates fell through but yesterday (the day they fell through) we readjusted them to give them more time. I really hate that it is so hard to get people to church. We try and we try and we try but they still don't manage to come. This week we are going to go hard on getting people to church and putting more baptismal dates with people. I hope I get to stay a few more changes because I really want to be able to get some baptisms here. If I have learned anything these last few weeks it is that being bold when it comes to inviting people is the only good/effective way to get anything done. If they don't have a goal to work towards they won't move forward... ever. For anyone who is reading this that hasn't gone on a mission yet (or is currently serving one), everyone of your MTC teachers, your trainers, your mission presidents, PMG and everyone else is going to tell you to be bold when you invite people to repent and come unto Christ (read also be baptized, part of true repentance). They are not just saying it!!! It is the best, if not the only, way to do missionary work. It has taken me almost 16 months to really gain a testimony of this. I hope you don't.
So onto less interesting things...
The way I found out about the end of the world cup was funny. We went to a member's (less active) house because he was going to do divisions with us and when we showed up it must have been less than a minuet left on the second over time. Germany was up 1-0 and all we could hear (the member had the game on) was the announcer yelling that any second now the ref was going to blow the whistle and Germany was going to win the world cup. By the time the member finished getting ready the game had ended and the announcer was just shouting that Germany had won its 4th (I think) world cup. It was funny because we had been wondering who was going to win or who had won the cup and we just happen to walk into a house where it was being watched right as it was finishing.
Insanity is killing... I don't think I have ever worked out so much in my life and I haven't lifted a single weight. literally the name says it all. I don't end up sore anymore (or throw up) but I am always exhausted after I finish.
My companion has been given doctor's orders to lose weight so he is on an extreem diet. today he weighed himself and has lost 3kg (about 6.6lbs) in two weeks. He still has another 13kg to lose (28.6lbs) but he is on his way. He is doing insanity with me (we got it because of him) and although at times he can't keep going he is at least trying his best (which is really all that Insanity asks). I still have another 52 days to go until I finish the 60 day program so we will see what happens to my body at the end (I took a picture of myself before I started and will take one when I finnish the 60 days).
This week we didn't have all that much success. We tried our best but sometimes things do work out as we hoped they would. We weren't able to get anyone to church but next week we should have a few more.
Elder Hernandez is still working hard. He has had some difficulty due to his health and his diet (he is always hungry because he is eating so little now) but he is working through it. I would like to thank you for giving me this opportunity to work with him this transfer. I have learned a lot.
1: You have to warm up their water every morning by turning on a boiler that is outside the house and fueled by a tank of natural gas that you buy off of trucks that drive down the street.
2: There is almost no such thing as a back yard. (or a front yard for that matter) because all of the houses are placed one next to the other.
3: A finished house is the exception rather than the rule.
4: You buy your bread out of a van that goes down the street blasting a really annoying song.
5: You can basically live within a block of your house.
6: Instead of a police force to control speeding they just put speed bumps every 100 meters on all of their main roads. (even the freeway has speed bumps).
7: No one has personal computers. Instead they go to the nearest Internet server to do anything and everything computer based.
8: You can't buy a vacuum in Mexico. partly because no one ever has carpet.
9: Wooden houses are for the poor people and cement is for the rich. (a wooden house here is basically like a camp shack, 4 walls and a roof)
10: Pizza is delivered by a motorcycle.
11: Fresa (strawberry) is a slang term that can be interpreted as posh, rich, really nice, or just anything upper-class. not just a very tasty fruit.
12: Being 30min to an hour late is normal...
13: A Piña (pineapple) is a slang term for a good looking woman. not just a delicious fruit.
14: It is virtually imposable to buy Root Beer. [I found a place where you can get it... but it is super expensive for a missionary budget.]
15: Milk is sold in boxes and doesn't need to be refrigerated until after you open the box. The expiration date is usually for next year.
16: When there is a World Cup game on in the which their country is playing the whole city seams to shut down. you can also always tell if a goal is scored.
17: A doctor hits your stomach a few times and because it hurt says that he needs to operate
18: Average people know more than the doctor about what a sick person should or should not eat... or at least they think they do.
19: Nobody buys DVDs in the stores... they all just buy the pirated ones you can find on almost every street corner.
*20: Owning a car is for rich people.
*21: Squeegees are used to clean the floor.
*22: The best way to make a dog stop barking at you or chasing you is to bend down. (no really they are accustomed that when someone bends down they are going for a rock to hit them with)
Elder Jason Blanding