Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sept 5, 2011   Last email from Salta Argentina


We had a baptism this last Saturday! It was really nice! There was a kid's day (holiday) party at the church right before it which brought in a  few people who might not have come to a baptism otherwise, and they really liked it! The next day we had 7 of our investigators at church and there were still alot that didn't make it. It happens.... these last few weeks have been so crazy here! Like I said before, our area is big for 2 missionaries and no bus system. At least it never helps us at all.  Every day we are running or walking as fast as we can between appointments. I think that might be why the sole on one shoe cracked on the inside. I have to get it fixed... there are cheap shoe repairs here because it's normal still to fix things here and not always buy new. Missionaries get new soles and repairs done alot and it's always good and fairly cheap!
Anyways we are still finding new people who are really interested! It's so exciting when the spirit guides us to people. Sometimes we knock on a door and the people are never there except that one time and then we know it was not just luck. It’s happened alot with members who haven't gone to church for a long time who aren't on our records or who are but haven't been contacted forever! Our ward is doing alot better now!
  I should have known that I was going to get transferred... I am going to miss everyone so much here in the area but I am sure it will be the same in every area. My companion is going home tomorrow so that means two new people are coming into the area. The area will have a fresh person and a good leader so it should continue to get better. Last night as we were running to a few of our investigators to teach the last few things we had planned and visit a little I found out I was going to a new area too. I hadn't packed or done anything to prepare to leave, so when we got home right at 10 I threw everything in my bags and was almost ready before bedtime. We were supposed to get a call early in the morning to know what time I had to get to the bus station so I finished packing expecting it to be an early bus trip. I heard Tartagal (my new area)(province of Salta but almost on the border of Bolivia) is between 5 and 8 hours away. At 8:50 we hadn't heard anything yet so I called while my companion was in the shower and they said to get there in 15 minutes! We hustled and didn't make it there in time so now I have to wait until 2 pm for the bus ride... won't get to work tonight in my new area but I got a little time to write you and relax.

I have a couple more things than when I got here so every bag is topped off. I bought a water filter from a missionary (who was leaving) to be used in areas where the water doesn't come out clear. Some areas, I have heard, the water comes out tainted and so having the filter should be nice. It’s a pretty big thing that I will pass on to someone when I leave the mission field so when I come home the bags shouldn't be a problem.

I heard that in the Tartagal area there are groups of natives who speak different languages so I might learn some other words! 

There are these trees here that don't have any leaves but are filled with yellow or pink flowers that are almost exactly like a daffodil! They are so pretty but are only out for a little while before they all fall off. It looks like more will come out after they fall off but I'm not sure. I happened to have my camera yesterday to get pictures with some of the people after church so I snapped a picture. I forgot to bring my camera to the internet place though so I will send it next time.

It's not summer yet but I hear it rains 3  to 4 days out of the week in alot of the areas in the summer! My companion said you will be in ankle deep water and soaked to the bone more than once for sure!

The new president thinks it's better if we are in areas for a little longer so the norm might be 5 transfers in each area. I can't believe I have been in this area for 24 weeks!!!! It feels like a month or two that I have been here!

We are starting to eat more salad here now! I am so excited! They eat soups - usually vegetable - during the colder season and salad in the hotter times. It’s good soup but I have been craving fresh veggies for a while now! ha ha. I almost didn't fit into the baptism pants (I bought at the MTC) the other day... they are 33 so they fit perfectly with no room to grow when I got them... I guess I have grown a little in the other direction. I have been a little more firm with members recently in that I don't want any more after I am full. I just never feel good working right after lunch when I am stuffed. ha ha! You never know how much is coming. Sometimes you have a three or four course meal and the next time you have one. It’s different but really good! Lately I haven't been eating anything at night when I get back and have been sleeping like a rock even though I am a little hungry.

I have to go now but I love you all so very much and am excited for all that is going on! (new members of the family) =)

Love Alex

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