Monday, January 17, 2011

Week 22 in Atiquizaya–Aren’t you the bus driver?

Apologies for the late posting of this week’s email.  No pictures this week, but some are coming, I’m sure….  We do get a bit of a geography lesson on how the districts are divided up.  Finally, I understand.

Pretty boy.  Does that refer to him?  Or me?

Subject“I’ll get your arrow, pretty boy. And I’ll do it with my shirt on.”

This week has passed by a little faster than the last week, I think mostly because we had a multi-zone in the middle of it. That meant another trip to San Salvador. It’s a two hour bus ride somewhat similar to the rides to Mount Hood, as Dad may remember, but this is in a loud, hot bus, and instead of laying down across the benches you either sit three people on a bench made for two, or you’re standing. And they don’t stop in Sandy. But it’s not too bad. Except that there’s no way to sleep at all.

The multi-zone itself was really fun. I love meetings like that. We basically go and sit in a room for a couple hours (8 am to 4 pm, usually) and the president talks to us. Usually about the rules we’re keeping or breaking, the mission goals, and general counsel. This time we got a special treat. Elder Fern, I think it was, came to speak to us for an hour or two after our lunch break. He’s a Senior missionary, with his wife, but they’re serving in the San Salvador Temple Construction mission. So they’re in charge of the construction. We got to see a plethora of pictures of the construction, both inside and out, and it was crazy. This temple is amazing. He said that this is one of the most detailed and architecturally impressive temples he’s ever seen. And it’s cool too, because the endowment sessions are split into two rooms, instead of all in the one. And in the first room they’re getting an El Salvador customized mural. Sweet. I’m stoked. He also told us some cool stories. The coolest of which was probably this: They laid the second floor concrete in the beginning of August, which is still well into the rainy season here. Apparently rain and concrete don’t mix well until it’s dry, so that was a problem. They laid the concrete, and a storm started coming. All the workers were bummed out, because they knew what that meant, but Elder Fern just went and prayed that the temple would be okay. He said he received an assurance that it would be. The rain came, and came hard, as it does sometimes in this country, but all around the temple. The construction site itself was completely dry.

We’re trying to get an investigator named Alex ready for baptism this week, but his work schedule is really weird, and I’m not sure if we can find time this week to interview him. Also, he’s working when we were going to have the actual baptism. So it may move to next week. We’re also working on Herson Cruz, who is a kid in a less active family. We’re not sure if the dad is going to be ready to baptize him this week, but if he is, we’re dunking him.

We went back to visit some less active members. It was a less active mom whose husband and kids weren’t members. The kids are 11 and 13. I had visited her with Elder Reyes, and she didn’t seem like she wanted to come back to church. We even taught her husband once, and he was not open to it at all. But we passed by since Elder Wardlow didn’t know them, and her husband was home from work (he’s a bus driver (“Hey, we know you!” “You’re the bus driver.”)) which is weird. He had apparently been working on his bus and the engine fell on his thumb, breaking it. So he can’t work for a bit. It turns out that that was perfect for us. The mom wants to come back to the church, her kids want to get baptized, and the dad wants to learn if it’s true. He actually asked us to leave a couple chapters to read in the Book of Mormon, since he had already read the one we left. I don’t know what the difference is this time, but that’s super great.

So I don’t forget, by the way, I referred in my last email to the other missionaries being in Atiquizaya, which apparently caused some confusion. I am in Atiquizaya, but it’s split up like a birthday cake into fourths. My fourth is the largest, and the other three are the Sucre, Manantiales, and Atiquizaya wards. Elder Hardy and Elder Gonzalez are in Atiquizaya, and Elder Braithwait and Elder Marroquin are in Sucre and Manantiales. I’m in El Angel. But we’re all in Atiquizaya. Does that help?

Thanks for all your emails this week. I can thank this time both my parents, the president, Sarah Fotheringham, and Stacey Leybas for emails. And Dave Frogley, I guess, for that sentence he sent correcting my noche de hermanamiento translation. Thanks Dave!

I love you all, and hope things are going well for everyone. I was super sad to hear about the Ducks game, but the BYU basketball news helped me cope. Tell Steve Jobs to get well soon!

Thanks again,

Elder David Arrington

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