Monday, May 24, 2010

Email from 5/24/2010

Happy Birthday Delaney!

Yes, I had a fun week, too. Every week is fun in the OCM!!!

?Como fue la sita, Delaney? ?Hablaste Espanol con Josep? ?Habla con un "lisp" porque es de Espana? ?Recibiste algo otro que tu nook para tu cumpleanos? ?Como funciona el nook - tienes que conectarlo a la computadora para recibir libros del internet, o puede recibirlos sin cordas o con wifi o algo asi? ?Cuesta mucho para los libros o son gratis? ?Cuantos libros caben en la memoria del nook y cual libro vas a leer primero? Es que yo tambien quisiera un nook para que no tuviera que llevar mis escrituras a todos nuestros lecciones. Antes de salir en mi mision yo tambien iba a comprar un "leedor electronico" asi como un nook pero no valio la pena porque solamente tenia un par de meses antes de mi mision. ?Cuando vas a recibir los resultos de tu examen de Espanol AP? ?Cuales otros clases AP tomaste? ?Todavia estas en escuela o ya es completo? ?Vas a tomar otra vez un clase de Espanol en el ano que viene? Es que nosotros tenemos un ciudad en nuestro area donde hay muchos mexicanos con quienes podemos hablar. Es mucho mas dificil ensenar en espanol, pero estoy agradecido que aprendi Espanol o Elder Baxter tendria que ensenarlos solos. A nadie le gusta ensenar un leccion solo y sin ayuda de su companero.

Here's a quick translation from Merrill:
How was the date, Delaney? Did you speak Spanish with Josep? Do you speak with a lisp since he's from Spain? (note: Spanish from Spain sounds like it is spoken with a lisp.) Did you get anything besides the Nook for your birthday? How does it work - Do you have to connect it to the computer to get books, or can you get them cordless with wifi or something like that? Do books cost much for it or are they free? How many books does it hold in memory, and which book will you read first on it? It's because I also would like a Nook so I wouldn't have to carry my scriptures to all our discussions. Before leaving on my mission, I wanted to buy an electronic reader like a Nook but it wasn't worth the trouble with only a couple of months before my mission. When will you get your results from the AP Spanish test? What other AP tests did you take? Are you still in school or are you out yet? Will you take another Spanish class next year? We have a city in our area where there are many Mexicans with whom we can speak (Spanish). It is much more difficult to teach in Spanish, but I am thankful that I learned Spanish or Elder Baxter would have to teach by himself. Nobody likes to teach a lesson by himself and without help from his companion.

Hmmm...Sounds like the horses need a couple hours of lunging before the next ride - or Delaney to ride them - she'd show them who's boss. Have you considered wearing spurs?

I received your letter, but I left it at home so I might not get to all the questions, but here goes:

1. Elder Baxter is from Gold River, CA (suburb of Sacramento).

2. Yes, he is called to be a Spanish speaking missionary.

3. We are teaching more in English than in Spanish - probably 20%ish of our teaching is in Spanish.

4. Things are going well with Steven - he came to church yesterday and had a good experience.

5. Besides Madison, we also work in Perry, Geneva, and sometimes Painesville (sometimes because it is not technically in our area, but we poach that area because we speak Spanish and the sisters who "own" that area don't).

6. Yes, there is a big nuclear powerplant in our area with two big huge "cloud factory" cooling towers that spout steam all day long.

7. No, I do not know where Elder Ercanbrack is from.

8. No, being M!DNIGHTED!!! doesn't seem to happen too much - maybe once every other transfer or so it happens to somebody.

9. Yes, being M!DNIGHTED!!! does make life exciting and spontaneous. It also hurts your MSF when you spend a bunch of money getting food for the month and can't take it with you (flat tires don't help either...rrrrrrrggggg). I'll probably be using my debit card some this month.

So our ward is pretty cool, but it's weird to not be living in a student-heavy ward with a lot of medical students that are young and recently returned from their missions within the last 10 years or so. I like the people of the ward a lot, though, and the bishop is really good. Our investigators are Steven, who has been being taught for 3 weeks or so now and came to church yesterday. He still needs to quit smoking, but he's done it before and is pretty confident that he can do it again without too much trouble. If all goes well he should be getting baptized around the end of june. Also we are teaching Bro. Sutton, whose wife is a (less-active) member. They've been on vacation and just got back so I've only met them once (we helped him paint his basement), but it sounds like they've been mainly having trouble trying to get them out to church. We are working with the Hannys as well - they are a less-active couple. She is a returned missionary 30 years ago or so and it sounds like he used to be very active as well, but they haven't been to church in many years until yesterday. It sounds like they had mainly been kept away because they thought they would be social outcasts or something if they came back, but they had a good experience at church yesterday. When they walked in Sis. Hanny said "I really don't want to be here.", but she had a great time in Relief Society and by the end of the block her attitude had turned around and she was glad she had come.

The meal situation is pretty good - not all days but most of them are filled. I think we have 4 or 5 dinners with members this week. We have a Toyota Corolla - we get 1500 miles per month.

When we went to Kirtland on P-day it was good - most of the time was just spent playing basketball and volleyball. Zone conference actually wasn't at the Kirtland stake center (which is at the bottom of the hill the temple is on), but at a chapel in Mayfield. It was kind of different at zone conference because not all the sisters in the zone could come at the same time because there had to be people at the Kirtland visitors center and other sites, so half of the sisters came to our zone conference and half of them went to the Cleveland zone conference the next day instead. It is also different here because there are about 25 sisters in the zone and only 3 other companionships of elders - the sisters work in their areas some days and give tours and stuff at Kirtland the other days.

I'll send the SD card today.

That's SO cool to hear about Bro. Gibbons blessing the sacrament!! I love success stories!

Elder Matthew Smith