[Editor's note: Missionaries when you are writing home and you have "Hospital Visit!!!" in the subject line and you know that your mom will be using her phone to download your email and it takes a while to download the body of the email...you just made your mom visit the hospital herself! I had a heart attack when the rest of the email wouldn't download!]
Hey this week we went to the hospital!!! my companion was feeling bad and so he called the mission doctor and she told him that in the morning (this was at about 9:30-10:00 Tuesday night) he should take his pressure and if it was high to give her a call. the next day we did just that and the person with which he took his pressure told him it was high so he called the doctor again. she told him to go to the hospital... right away. we quickly went home to get a few things just in case they made us stay over night and went to the emergency entrance to the hospital (that is where she told us to go). after the first check they told him he needed to see another doctor so we went to him. He didn't even test him or anything, just asked his symptoms and hit his stomach a few times, and told us he was going to have us stay over night to be able to operate on my companion. we basically told him to suck it because we weren't going to just give in to an operation that easy. instead we went back to the emergency and had them do the ultrasound the other doctor wanted (luckily my companion hadn't eaten for almost 6 hours). there was nothing.... we finally got home at about 9:30pm (we went into the hospital at about 12:30-1:00PM. It was a real pain. In the end they just told him he needs to go on a diet and they gave him a few medications to take.
See my letter to President Christensen to see the miracle of this week.
It was really nice to be able to have the zone conference this week. I always learn a lot during those conferences.
This week we almost didn't work because we spent all of Wednesday in the hospital, Thursday in the zone conference, Friday planning/coordination meeting/a ward mission activity that fell through because 45 minutes after it should have started we still didn't have anyone there other that the members that were going to run the activity and on Sunday we had the training meeting in the stake. Put all of that together and we worked about 2 or 3 full days this week. There wasn't much we could do about it because they were all things that we didn't have control over but it was still frustrating to know that we didn't do almost anything this week. This next week we are going to put in the batteries and do everything we can to make up for last week.
We did have a really cool experience on Sunday. One of the members here (Antonio Baez, the first speaker in the meeting last night in the stake center) called us during the food and asked us if we were going to visit anyone before the meeting in the stake center. He accompanied us for the second visit to one of our investigators and helped us put two baptismal dates, one of which we hadn't taught yet but just invited to come listen to the lesson because she happened to also be in the house at the time. I realized that putting a baptismal date in the first lesson is not only possible but actually helps the investigator have a goal to be working for. He then, on the way to the meeting, told us of some of the things he learned/did in his mission and it helped us see a lot of things we can do better. After this experience I will try to place a date with every person in the first or second lesson (first as a rule and the second if I see that there are circumstances that would effect when they could be baptized). I'm just sad that I hadn't really learned this lesson earlier in my mission (it seems that I am learning so many things now that I wish I had known 15 months ago).
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.
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
Elder Jason Blanding
[He sent a picture but it is of his companion in the hospital and I know as a mom I wouldn't want his companion's mom posting a photo of my son on the "table."]