(Letter received May 3rd 2011 … but written April 29th 2011)
How is everything going? Did you like the writing on my walls … my ceiling … my door? Haha Well, things have been going good so far. My Mission President told me to make sure I let you know I’m alive still. Obviously I am since I’m writing you.
The first day was a little crazy. They were showing us around everywhere and when things finally settled down, I got to our classroom. I was the only one there … not even the teachers were there. My host that was taking me around, took me to watch an orientation video. After that, my teacher Irmão Brough, came and got me and took me to class. I was the ONLY one there and teachers here don’t speak to us in English. Only Portuguese. I was so confused but then started to catch on. When the other guys showed up, they went and watched the video, and when they got to the classroom … I got to watch them all be as confused as I was. It’s amazing how much we’ve learned in two days. If anything, having my Spanish is hurting me with the pronunciation. However, we are doing good.
As I guessed, my companion is from Provo. His name is Elder Downer and he isn’t a downer at all. He’s really cool. Another guy’s companion never showed up so he got added to us since he rooms with us. His name is Elder Krusi. He’s a fun guy. In my division, there are six of us. I love all these guys. Elder Tarbet is one of my favorites, tied with Elder Downer. But they are all cool. One has one of those “I’m holier than thou” attitudes which kind of bugs me but he’s still cool. He just needs to learn to lighten up a little and have fun. It’s great here!
Yesterday (day 1), was kind of crazy and they crammed a lot in. We did this teaching activity where we observed some “Missionaries” teaching and talking to “Investigators” (acting of course). On the last one, they picked me and my companion, Elder Downer, to replace the “Missionaries” that were acting. All the other “Investigators” were nice and cooperative but ours was not at all. We were suppose to knock and have him let us in. He would not! And I was just ready to say, “Ok. Is there a better time for us to come back?” But I didn’t. Once we got in, and started talking, everyone was suppose to join in the discussion. I think everyone was too scared to say anything though, because he was pretty rough. It was a bit of a reality check because not everyone is nice like the first two “Investigators”.
Today (day two), was awesome. Our classes were so good and had such a strong spirit. It was great. The lesson on the gospel, in our smaller class, was in Portuguese but I was able to understand well. Even when I had no idea what he was saying while bearing his testimony, I could still feel what he was trying to say. We learned how to pray today in Portuguese and from now on, no more English prayers. That will be interesting. I saw Brigham Tauteoli yesterday and today, as well as Kyle Swartzlander and Nathan Westover (who works here).
(Starts writing again in a different pen.)
I had to take a break from writing but from then until now … I got your package and I also got made the new District Leader. I don’t think I do much besides get mail, but I still think it’s pretty cool. There’s so much more I want to tell you guys but we are kept pretty busy here. I love you guys and I miss you. Tchau!