Holy intense week! This week has been just crazy. Almost as crazy as this weird Spanish keyboard. It took me ten minutes to find the apostraphe key. Anywho, my trainer is named Elder Pastrana, he's sweet! He's really funny (as far as I can understand...maybe he isn't haha), and he's super obedient, and he doesn't speak english AT ALL--the three things I wanted in a trainer. We have been working crazy hard. I've never worked so hard or eaten so much. I'm having difficulty adapting to the culture, but other than that all is well. There are many things that are super different.
Every day we have "la comida" around 2 o clock, which is the largest meal of the day. And it is HUGE. It's usually three courses, and one serving of one course is big enough to feed all the kids in Rwanda. I can barely handle it, and my companion has 2 plates! It really is ridiculous. It was funny because yesterday we ate at a Sister's house (every Comida is provided by a ward member) and I was barely close to finishing the first course, and she said "i know comida is a new thing for you, it really is ok if you can't finish it, i won't be offended." I said okie dokie and she took the plate. Then she went and grabbed an entire plate of cut-up watermelon for me to eat! haha I thought "i couldn't even finish the first course...what makes you think i can begin the second?!" but, because i am so polite, i started eating it. Yikes. Now i always carry pepto-bismol with me. Seriously.
So to answer a question Elder David Budge asked me, we call the disobedient missionaries "fritos" and the ones who don't work at all "muertos". Highlights of the week: Elder Pastrana and I were contacting in a colony called "Tecamachulca", and we just weren't having any success at all. After another rejection, I told him we should pray to find someone who was willing to listen. He looked at me like I was crazy and said "what do you mean? Like, right now? We already prayed when we left the house." And said, "well, let's pray again so we can find someone to teach". And then he said "I guess...if you want." Ha it was awesome. So I prayed, in English, that we could find someone. Afterward he said "Well...that was my first prayer in the street." But, lo and behold, we found an AWESOME lady just a few houses away from where we were who invited us in to teach. We taught her and her mom, named Lourdes and Hirma, respectively. It was awesome. We visited her again on Saturday, taught her about tithing and how our church is organized and such, and she loved it. She thought it was sweeeet the way our church is set up. Which is true! We visited her again on Sunday, but she said she was too busy to come to church. Bummer. But she wants to come next week, and Elder Pastrana and I both feel impressed that she will be baptized. So yeah. Worth every blister on my feet (and there are plenty...).
I've learned some useful phrases that I hear all the time here among the members. My favorite is when members turn to my companion and say " he's from utah? but he looks mexican...". haha I picked up on that one pretty quickly. It happens at least once a day. I also know now why Mom always has lemon in her water, because EVERY comida we have smashed-up lemons in our water, and on everything else. And it's funny because we're in an extremely humble part of the city, but as soon as you walk into someone's home, you can always find a really, really, nice stereo with a bazillion other speakers in the house. It's really funny.
To give you an idea of what my area is like, or rather the entire mission, I'll share something President Bullock shared with me. He said, "If this mission was New York City, we would be in the Bronx and Brooklyn". Yep. And our area is on the humbler end of the spectrum. But I love it. Melissa would absolutely hate it here. haha.
I have a lot more to say, but alas, I have to go to la comida. To stuff myself silly. I love all of you, and hope you're doing well. By the by, I receive mail every two weeks at Zone Conference. Just a heads up. :)
LOVE, Elder Budge
PS- Wal-Mart here is CRAZY!