Monday, December 5, 2016

Forty Nine Weeks

Hello Everyone!

First of all, the biggest news (and also the news that has me the most freaked out) is that this coming transfer, tomorrow, I am going to be recieving a NEW companion, and I am going to be training. I have no clue who it is or whether they are yankee or latino, but I will be finding out tomorrow. The poor refuerzo (reinforcement) that has no time in the mission at all that gets stuck with me haha, we'll have to see how things work out. The other fun thing is that it will be in a "new" area. I am currently in Loma Hermosa B, and when an Elder from Loma Hermosa A left in a flash, we ended up in a trio and had to work in both sides. Well I didn't pay all that much attention to the layout of things on the other side since it wasn't my area, and rather just followed the other Elder around, but now I am going to be staying over there (In Loma A) and my current companion, Elder Pinheiro is going to stay in Loma B and get a new companion as well. I'll let you know how things are going this next week though haha.

Other than that though, I have done a fairly decent amount of service this week. There is an Hermana in this ward that has a roof that has been leaking and so this Wednesday in the morning we climbed up top (most of the roofs here are flat by the way, like an office builiding or a school) and cleaned it up, swept really well and then sealed it up with liquid sealant that you roll on like paint. It was a lot of fun and the Hermana was very happy afterwards and so it was pretty gratifying as well. On Saturday too then, we went to visit an elderly couple at more or less 3 in the afternoon, the hottest part of the day, and they needed to cut the lawn out front so we helped them with that as well. To cut it they had an electric weed-eater though (almost everyone here cuts grass with just a weed eater) but I will say that electric weed-eaters aren't that powerful and the grass was pretty tall so it was a little laborious; I went to town cutting while my companions cleaned up the grass left behind. When I was halfway done then, the Hermano pulled out an electric lawn-mower to use instead (also with almost no power) so I mostly finished up with that but had to switch back to the weed-eater to go back over that part anyway. I will say though that we did get some funny looks from people going by and it is exhausting (and makes you sweat a lot) cutting grass at the heat of the day (31 degrees celsius, 90 fahrenheit) with 70-80% humidity in a shirt and tie. Again though, it was fun.

Spiritual experience of the week though is that there is an hermano that hasn't been going to church in a long time who has a friend that almost died in an accident going 200km/hour (120mph) but is still alive and now is trying to figure out why he is still here on earth, why he didn't just go straight to heaven and so the hermano told him that he could visit with us and we taught him in the house of the Hermano a few days ago and he said that he started to understand a little bit of why he is still here and what he might need to be doing. He said that he had asked his catholic priest as well as a couple other religions but nobody could give him an answer but with us he felt really good and is super excited to be able to visit with us again here this next week. For me it was a testament that what I'm doing is right and that I really am sharing the true, restored gospel with others. Lessons like the one that we had don't happen often but it was an awesome experience.

Last fun tidbit of the week is that we got to go back to capital on Friday as well to go to the dentist again for Elder Pinheiro, and so this time I was sure to take a few more photos to share. They are thus:
1) Graffiti of an old couple dancing the Tango - Tango originated here in Buenos Aires and I thought it was really awesome, so I'm sharing it with you all.
2) Statue of something; the truth is I'm not sure what (I think it's some kind of tribute to Spain and the origins of Argentina) but it was cool so I grabbed a photo.
3&4) Stadium of my soccer team here that we passed by (If you are in Argentina, you have to pick a soccer team because everyone asks what team you are from and they don't accept "none" for an answer. Also statue of a man outside wearing the jersey of the team.
5)Elder Aguirre and I took advantage of the trip to go out and buy dental and health supplies that you can't find in our part of Buenos Aires (capital always has more stuff to buy) while Elder Pinheiro was in his appointment (we left him with our choffeur, a member of the church so all was good).
6)We also found a lot more flavors of ramen noodles in capital than we can find here in our part of Buenos Aires, so we bought them as well.

And best photo for last - I felt as though my socks weren't getting very clean taking them to get washed, and so I decided to wash them by hand. The photo is how the water turned out about an hour after letting them soak - I changed it and it turned out the same again after another hour, so I kept going another 2 or 3 times with the same results. I am happy to say though that they should be clean by now haha.

Other than that though, I hope that everyone has a great week and love you all!

Elder McCollum

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