Monday, October 14, 2013

14 October 2013

Paul OYM'ing with a parrot

. . . a little peck
 Dear Family and Friends,
This week we set a Mesa zone record for total teaching lessons at 225. That led the mission. We set a companionship record at 56 lessons taught. Which was a miracle since 30 lessons cancelled this week.

We have a ridiculous amount of work going right now. 

We had a pretty cool teaching opportunity this week. It was on Tuesday, the day after every single lesson on Monday fell through. We OYM'd him in the parking lot. He was in his 20s and the first thing he said was, "I have a MMJ card." Haha, ok. He was smoking but very interested in what he said. He told us his concern was when Christians or Jews or whatever told him that what he did was bad when they would turn around and do bad things as well. He said he didn't like to be told he was wrong.

Who does? We slowly built up the conversation around his faith and how he lives his faith. We eventually introduced prophets to him and he said, "well yeah, if a prophet told me to smoke I probably wouldn't!" We told him, "One has." His eyes got wide and he inhaled the last breath of the joint until it went out. We set up a return appointment with him but he wasn't there. Hopefully we can find him this week - he got really excited about the idea of living prophets. 

Unfortunately the Skype lessons this week with Tracy Watson failed. There was a technical problem on his end and apparently the power in Pakistan was out. Devastating.

Well, it finally happened. I officially had my driving privileges temporarily revoked. Apparently it was supposed to start on September 1st but no one told me until October 5th. As I drove into the mission office the vehicle coordinator said, "whatcha doin drivin?" So, President Toone told me to take a break for the next 1-5 days as he figures out what to do. Hopefully he figures it out soon! Tiwi, the GPS unit that is put into our cars that measures speed and G's pulled in turns, made me "yellow-lighted." I had a good case as I argued my way out of the longer suspension ha. I had been "green lighted," meaning a safe driver, just a few weeks before and the only "aggressive driving violations" that I had gotten in that time were accidentally turning too quick or going over a bump too fast. Nothing purposefully aggressive...

Anyway, that has been fun.

My letter is going to be shorter this week - we've been asked to review everyone's Facebook profiles to make sure they follow the guidelines and we're already short on time as is. 

The highlight of the week was eating Menudo - cow stomach lining soup. We were invited over for dinner and told that we would be eating carne aasada! It was with a single sister so the sister missionaries had to be there for us going inside. 30 minutes before dinner we found out they were sick but they decided to come anyway. We were all excited for carne asada!

As we walked in the door, something spelled...different. It wasn't the smell of grilling steak or lettuce or salsa. No. It was something far different. A smelly smell that I had smelled before. I could never forget that smelly smell that smelled...smelly.

It was menudo.
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We all looked at each other in silent fear, knowing what was to come. A prayer to bless the food was said with all of us adding our own silent prayer that the food would stay down. From bowl to mouth went each spoonful of broth, hominy, and cow stomach. The mixture of stomach in my own stomach was not a pleasant one. The battle continued. I attacked the bits of stomach first, thinking that if I could get that down I could get the rest down easier. The first spoonful in and it almost came right back out. In a stroke of ingenuity, I reached for the Coke. Hmm, coke. I don't like coke that much. But that night it was my best friend. Spoon in mouth, fake chew, pour coke, swallow everything. Repeat.

When half the bowl was gone I looked around. Everyone was pale in the face. Full, yet not sure how. All of the sudden we hear, "THE RICE IS READY! How much meat do you want??"

What had we just heard? Not that. Noo, not that! MORE FOOD?? Another plate of rice was delivered to the table and put in the middle. And then pork mixed with egg was put on the table. I don't like eggs. 

Nevertheless between the coke and the rice I won. I left that house victorious. Five minutes later I realized the Menudo had won. Recognizing an emergency, we raced home for some menudicine (toothpaste.) It worked miracles. 

That night reflecting on that day we all agreed that that would be a good experience to look back on. In 50 years.

Hahah good times...Mexicans love that stuff, we just can't do it for some reason.

Also, last Monday we went to a member owned bird shop last Monday. I found a new friend then he attacked me and cut my arm!

Yesterday Elder Lanier, I mean Lanier, returned from home to visit us! It was way fun to see him. We had served together for 4.5 months in Yuma. He and I both looked back on those days with a smile on. Good times were had. 

Anyway, I'm about out of time! Thanks so much for the letters John and Aunt Andra and Anika [and Mom and William]! Hope everyone is having a great week!


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