Sunday, July 18, 2010

Speaking Spanish All Day Long….

David’s latest letter from July 13….

So here we are again at the close of the week. How fun. This week passed more quickly than I thought it would, and suddenly I've been here a month. Almost. Crazy. It's still hard to know that I've got 100 left, but it'll be good. I'm missing some big stuff at home, though. I'm plagued with questions about what's going on. For example, will I see the spawn of Emily, Lindsay, Julie and Stacey? Sometime after my mission, yes. But I'm still kind of sad I'll miss the first bit. There, I got it out right at the beginning. Now the rest of my letter can relate directly to my mission.

Yes, I'll miss all of that, but I'm missing it for a dang good reason. I'm running out of things to tell you all about the MTC and my companions, so I don't know what this will really be about. Although I do have to say that Elder Roach got a DearElder from his girlfriend last week that apologized for breaking up with him so brutally in a letter which he hadn't gotten yet, so we were all waiting for that. It finally came yesterday, and it was pretty good. We all had a good laugh, and he was a really good sport. Then he sat down today and wrote the best guilt-tripping response I've ever heard of in my life.

Our district is supposed to be speaking only Spanish at this point, but it's really hard. During meals and such I just want to say something, and I don't know how to say it in Spanish. But I'm getting there. In a couple days we're going to try to teach lesson 2 in Spanish, and I think we'll do just fine. We know all the vocab and grammar for it, it's just a matter of practice.

A few days ago we went into the Referral Center to call some people, but for some reason they were out of English contacts. I've never even heard of that happening, but it did. So of course our teacher throws us head-first into doing Spanish ones. I don't think you could understand how scared I was. Seriously. I suddenly had to speak Spanish to non-member natives. Somehow, though, the Lord helped us all through it. We ended up being very successful that day. I myself sent two sets of missionaries and bore my testimony a few times. It was a testimony to me that the Lord can help us through those times if we're prepared and have faith. Plus, Hispanic people make time to talk to you. They're so much nicer than Americans. I already love them, and I haven't even served them yet.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot to tell you that my mission scripture I had picked was Isaiah 49:5-6. It still is, unless you think I should change it. I just haven't come across any others that I like as much. But, of course, I'm open to suggestions.

Fun story. On Sunday we get to watch movies from 8-9, and there's usually four playing in different rooms. They rotate through a bunch of them, but the gym, being the largest room, gets the bigger movies. Usually they rotate through The Testaments, Joseph Smith (the really good new one), and Legacy. Just after we got here, we were all really excited to see the Joseph Smith movie because it's amazing, but it ended up getting cancelled because of the premiere showing of The District 2. It was way better than the first District, but still not quite as good as the Joseph Smith movie. But we figured, hey, no big deal. They'll rotate back to it in three weeks. Which was supposed to be this last Sunday. They passed around the schedule the night before, and it said that it was the Joseph Smith movie in the gym. Perfect. Literally minutes before it was supposed to start, though, they announced they were going to play the final episode of the District 2 instead. Ah! I think somebody in the mission presidency was just like, "Hey, don't you think the missionaries would love it if we surprised them with the District? They just love it when we do that." As if we'd just smile to ourselves and think, "Oh! They got us..."

The fireside that we had before, though, was really really good. Elder Oaks was there because his daughter, Jenny Oaks Baker, was giving the fireside. Evidently she's a world-renowned violinist and has played for countless orchestras, graduated from Julliard, and has several albums out. She even played for the Stadium of Fire a few years back, although that may not be as big of a thing as the rest of her resume. But what she would do is give a short little three minute story-ish talk, which was always cute and funny, but also really good, and then she'd play a song. Also, her nephew was playing accompaniment on the piano. But they were all so good! And she made it look so dang easy!

I got to help out at the TRC after my time on Friday afternoon, which was really exciting. We were investigators for the beginning Spanish kids, which really made me feel good about my Spanish. Oh, and I've seen Elder Rasmussen around a few times, now. I think he's gotten over the whole chapusero (noob) feel.

It's great to hear from you all again. I'm glad Emily and Dave could visit the family in Oregon, and you'll have to let me know how the move goes. Lindsay and Mike, I have no idea what you're doing besides helping old folks play croquet and boche. Stacey, just don't get distracted by what I'm saying here. It's elsewhere. But I love hearing about the orange and how Kyle is doing. Julie and Dave, I'm also less than informed as to your activities, but I'm sure they're jubilant. And I don't say jubilant.

Boys, I'm so glad you're keeping Mom and Dad busy. Really, they'd be bored to tears otherwise. Maybe tears of joy, but who knows.

Mom and Dad, I love you both. Probably more than any of the siblings, because it's your fault I'm here. Thanks for everything, and I miss my mommy every day.

In closing, really fast, I want you all to again know that I know the church is true. There isn't a doubt in my mind, and I'm ready to tell the world.

I love you all,

Elder Arrington

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