February 23, 2015, Week miracles and I WISH I WAS HOME ON WEDNESDAY

Hi Mom,

This week was really fun.

We started with a noche de hogar (FHE) with an Hermana on Monday. It felt a lot like teaching a lesson, but it wasn't nearly as long. We sheared a little of the atonement with them. It was really cool because one of the people there was one of our investigators, and he'd just gotten out of the hospital because he was shot (don't get scared, it didn't happen any where near my area). After we had a cena (Jason this is the word for DINNER, almuerzo is the word for LUNCH, just thought I'd help with your Spanish;)) It was an interesting concoction of Chocolate and chicken called mole. It might be good, but I don't think so. Elder Gonzalez had it before and said that they put way to much chocolate into it, and I happen to agree. It was weird. I'm just glad that Monday is my "cheat meal" day (today it's candy (supplied by S*) and chips (Doritos to be exact)) because we also had a really good member lunch as a district earlier that day. It was so good, the almuerzo, that I literally didn't feel like eating a dinner when we planed that day, I was so stuffed, but by the end of Noche de Hogar, I needed a little more food. I also had flash backs to Bed Time Treats (M&Ms) and I had a bag in the apartment. I was craving them so bad. I had them today while we were doing laundry.

After that we had Tuesday, which I spent mostly just e-mailing you.

We then had Wednesday. Man I got TRUNKY. All week I kept remembering that Jason was having his last ____, Last Preparation Day, Last Transfer Meeting (if he did that,) and finally, GOING HOME. We were in coordination meeting (a meeting with the ward mission leader to coordinate our efforts with the ward) when I noticed that it was passed 6:39 and Jason was home. (I LOVED THE STORY). It was such a weird realization. I noticed because I had to note something in my planner and I'd noted his return time. We then had a lesson with L, our super solid New Investigator who's getting baptized soon (we don't know when just that she's freaking prepared and SICK!!!)

After that, we did weakly planning (on Thursday) and that was it. We only stopped planning because we had to run to a cena with Hermano J (the first counselor in the obispado (bishopric.)) We then ran by our investigators that we usually have at that time, but they weren't home, so we went home and FINISHED WEEKLY PLANNING. We're focusing on our focusing this week.

On Friday, it was pretty slow. We started with service at the government center with Elder Gutierrez and Elder Rangel. This was super fun. Elder Rangel asked us all a bunch of weird hypotheticals that were fun to answer. My favorite was "If you could pick the new mission car what would you pick?" my answer was "the Bat-mobile, and all the bike areas would get the bat-bike." They loved it. During the following argument over Bat-bike or Green Goblin Glider (Elder Gutierrez's idea) a very strange man showed up and asked (Word for word) "Have you heard that God loves you and has a plan for your salvation?" We answered yes, and then he began to quote scripture at us and said "If you want to be saved, just repeat back what I say with you heart and with your lips. Dear Lord Jesus." None of us said anything, so he repeated again. Again, silence. He re-explained this "Echo Prayer" as he called it and started up again. Here I told him "We don't do that," He finally caught on and asked us if we were Mormon, Elder Rangel said yes and that we don't do that. It was really funny because he just couldn't get Elder Rangel (he kept saying Ron-jel, it's Ran-hel) or my name right during his whole spiel. We then went finding and found a man who told us that "as soon as God shows up with money, I'll start believing in him." Elder Gonzalez picks up coins and collects them (he has $10.54 in just coins on his desk + a collection of quarters, I've started doing this to, I have like $.37) and so we thought maybe we should swing by with that and ask "do you believe now?" We found a really solid potential that day, but her esposo (husband) called us Saturday morning to cancel the appointment :(. We taught S that night and after had to use the bathroom, bad. We've been drinking a gallon+ of water daily (not all that hard) so we have to go to the bathroom a lot. We found some oatmeal that was pretty cheep (we were out) and Pop-Tarts. We broke and bought them. I felt so guilty. luckily they only lasted until lunch Saturday, really bad buy.

Saturday we spent the day finding people. We started by going by S* to teach U* (S*'s mom). After this we needed the bathroom again. We have what we call the Proselyting Bathroom. It's in the store John's that is right by S*. We went there because it was really bad. Right when we turn the corner and can see the bathroom, a man walks in. We wait for a little bit, but he's not coming out. Finally I brake and use the girl's bathroom (they're one man bathrooms where you lock the door behind you), and by the time I'm done with my business, wash my hands and am out the door, the man finally finishes and we waited a good ten minutes before finally just using the ladies bathroom. after that we talked with a menos activa (less active member) who reminded me of one of my teachers at BC. We didn't even know that she was a menos activa until we started talking to her. The way she talked made me think of Kray to be completely honest. She's not ready, but we gave her a Book of Mormon and our number and invited her to read it and call us if she wants to hear more. We actually talked to her for two reasons. 1. She looked like my teacher. 2. She had the cutest little dog. His name's Polar Baer, he's 11 years old, and he has diabetes. Kind of sad, but really good conversation.

Sunday was a super cool miracle. We planed to spend most the day in studies and at church, but Obispo Hernandez had different plans. After church (WHICH I UNDERSTOOD!!!) he wanted us to take out the members, so we went back and no one was there (this tends to happen a lot) so instead he gave us menos activos to go by in our areas. The one we had wasn't home, but one of her neighbors had their door open, so we went by to talk. At first he seamed like a bible basher, but he turned into a new investigator and had really good questions that the restoration will answer.

As for the car crash, it was his fault. It's a tradition here for drivers to not actually look where they are going. He was waiting to turn right, so he was looking left, at a street light. I had a green and was coming from his right. He found and opening, so he started to turn right, but still he hadn't looked  right, so I'm in front of a car, on a bike, that decides he's clear to go. CRASH. There was no damage done to me and the bike was an easy fix. Bad news, we didn't know what information to get (FYI treat it like a car crash, drivers license, license plate, and insurance card) so we only got his number, and it was fake (Why is everyone in the valley a lier?)

Transfers are next week, so not this Tuesday but next Tuesday, and I'm very likely to be transferred out, but you shouldn't worry about that because forwarding letters is as easy as giving it to the Zone leaders to take to the mission home.

Yes many people here speak both languages or just English, but for the most part they're actually all paisas (San Fernando Mission term for Hispanic) and speak only or better Spanish, so it's nice.

weight loss, down another 2 lbs. 172 today (before cheat meal).

Out of time now.

Love you.

Elder Michael Blanding