Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Photos from Maceio and Arapiraca

Getting ready to land in Maceio, after leaving the CTM
I have no idea what this is. Does anyone know?
This must be the new mode of transportation for Brazil. Haha! I'm not sure about the "date" setting on Brian's camera. I don't think he has figured that out yet.

Happy Halloween!


Heidi sounds like you had fun at Homecoming, I never like dances or dancing at that and hey i still dont but glad you had fun! Yeah the church is on a corner and sounds like the place, its not in the center of the city and there are 3 churchs in the city and all of them are on corners after thinking about it. (I was trying to find where Brian lived on Google Earth) Yeah not bad timing (He is talking about a package he sent) i paid the extra 5 dollars to have it get there faster, and i like the coconut chocolate too and they sell these coconut aguá where they refrigerate the coconut and then put a hole in it and then you drink it from a straw, i think you would like it, its the purest water you can drink and really refreshing. Im not sure if Mark took the suits he wanted but you can call and ask him, i think he did and so you can do whatever you want with them, i don’t want or need them.

Yeah we see stuff about the elections everyday on the tv’s and all brazilians love barak obama and always ask me if I’m voting for him etc..which by the way you guys can vote for me if you want too.

Sounds like Tate is in a similar climate as me, not sure which is hotter but sure he is having just as much fun with it.

You said you want to know what i eat but i eat the same stuff everyday, but I´ve had chicken heart, feet, haven’t had pig stomach yet or intestines but thats only a matter of time, and was awsome last week the President and Sis Beynon treated us to lunch at labareda(nice resturante churrasco type thing) and we got her to eat chicken heart for the first time, was reallyfunny.

You mentioned monkeys I think last email and was funny after i finished emailing you there was a boy outside with a monkey and he said he bought it for 2 dollars! So what you need to do is buy a monkey for me ok?

Umm say hi and bye to the Chapmans for me, sounds like a lot of people are dying but has to happen to us all eventually. The pictures you sent me didnt come through except for the ones of heidi.

Yah Im not sure about how many people we'll be baptizing before this transfer ends which is next week but i think well have at least 1-3 because all the other people are just not exactly ready yet but will be next transfer.

Yeah we did alot of crazy stuff in the ctm and it just gets better in the mission hehe...well happy halloween, not sure if people in this city celebrate it at all, i know in sao paulo and other cities they do parties and stuff for it, and every city has its own holidays, like this week there is a holiday only here in arapiraca, not sure what it is but dont think well get much work done tomorrow because of it.

Did you already send my Christmas package and if not what did you send? Did Staci have her baby yet? Anyone else having a baby? What did you eat today?

OK well Love ya, Brian

Thursday, October 23, 2008

What Life is Like in Brazil

October 22, 2008

No haven’t been trampled by anything, there are lots of cats and dogs, horses etc...and yes godzilla lives here as well, but yea lots of lizards and big ones too, oh and like Jeff’s mission they have a lot of really cool birds here and a very common pet is to have and in this city not many but I’ve seen some people with a little pet monkey type thing, but the birds are really cool and pretty and they have the macahs and the country bird which i haven’t seen but I really want to is the tucan, they mainly live up in the amazons so i probley wont see them and to own one costs like 2000 dollars.

Church is at 9 in the morning, we spend from 7-9 waking and getting our investigators to church and then we go to priesthood and then to the class for recent converts and investigators where either the teacher called to that assignment or us the missionaries give the lesson, then last is sacrament meeting where is hard to see the reverence in the meeting but is just nice to be in a ward and have people to get to know, i know just about everyone because we eat lunch with them everyday. After church we go to lunch appointment and then if we have any other appointments after that we go to those and then every Sunday night we go to this awsome lady’s home where we share a message or lesson with her part member family and them we eat dinner, she make really good pastels and doughnuts and cake deserts etc...really good and look forward to that every Sunday night.

Normal day schedule consists of waking up at 6:30 and exercising (somtime), eating breakfast (cookies, cereal, etc), then shower and iron my shirt and get ready to study, i study from 8-11 and study the livro de mórmon for 30 min pmg (preach my gospel book) 30-60min study with comp in pmg lessons etc for 30-60min and then study w/e in the language for the remainder of time. Then for an hour if we have time depending where we eat lunch we go contact and find new investigators until 12 and then go to our lunch appointment from 12-1:30 usually and then take our dinner break to nap and get out of the sun and heat, 2:30 or 3:00 we go back out and go to all our appointments and find new investigators at the same time and any other meeting or appointments we have we go to as well, and do this the rest of the night until 8:30-9ish.

No I hate writing home because it takes forever to get letters home and then to get a response it takes forever, I just got a letter from Mark, but it took over two months to get here. so idk....i’ll try to do better at sending notes or letter w/e, I did send those 2 packages, one to you and the other to my friends 2 weeks ago. they have my photos in it so yeah save the photos for my return and hopefully you will get them. (I asked if he still writes to his friends very often.) The rain has stopped for the most part and summer is rolling in, so it won’t rain as much but it does at least once a week but not much. I wash my cloths in the washer and then i hang them on the string to dry, very simple and easy. Haven’t heard from Jared in a while but he is getting ready, i think he leave in 1 month or less and has been in china with his dad the last few weeks and has been arrested 2 there already hehe so yeah that’s probley why he didn’t email you back yet.P-day today was very boreing! We played soccer last night and today we played truco (a card game i like a lot), Went to another elders home and did nothing there, and so yeah you can see why it gets boring because we did nothing but we ate lunch in the central of the city and had an x-bacon filét which is an awsome hamburger and had madacuja to drink and now we are emailing. Other p-days we do stuff but today did nothing. No fast food here but in maceio they have a mcdonalds but it is in a mall and cant go in there, and another mcdonalds in the other state serguipe and that one you can go to but too far away from that. Not sure how many people live here, i guess in 2005 there was about 200000 people, yeah its the tobaco capital, just across the street of my house there is a small land of tobaco and you can find that in random places of the city but most of the really big fields are on the outsides of the city but are not far from were i live, and yeah everyone smokes etc...tobaco is a really big thing here...

Don’t remember my exact address but you can try to find the lds chapel on Belo vista rua (street) and then my home is just down the street from it and if you find the chapel you find my area so yeah if that helps, let me know what you find and what you think of my area…( I asked him if he could give me his address, then I could try and Google Earth where he lives to see his house and his street.) Yeah we live on a nicer street but some of the other elders homes are on dirt roads too and i actually like their homes better because it is so noisy on our street and the walls are not sound proof so you hear everything that goes on outside and in the other house, so for example you can hear the drunk people arguing, the loud music and every car and if you haven’t heard about the car that goes around advertising for political and advertisement stuff with load music etc...(Illegal in the states), it can get annoying when your trying to study or sleep but i love my home.

Only two more weeks of this transfer and already have interviews with the president tomorrow and seems like we just did that last week. We currently have a lot of good people we are working with, i think 9 people maybe 10 total/4men/6 mother or children and is awsome to see their progression and excitement. So yeah we haven’t baptised in over a month but that’s because we are saving them for the last week of the transfer and has been a miracle that we have found these people to teach and help prepare for baptisim. We have that family of 4 like I said and they get married next week, and then we have a member who’s sister and son and hopefully her husband we are teaching and will get them ready for baptisim as well, and there’s Sebastião and his wife that we have been working with for over a month and we were about to leave them but his wife told us she wants to be baptised but only if her husband is and he is having a hard time getting a testimony but with knowing that she wants to be baptised it should be easy to help her get her husband the desire for baptism, also have leandro another guy who has been coming to church for two weeks and now that i think about it, we haven’t even taught him yet...well do that this week and baptise him were doing good so far and not a week too late, its coming down to the end of the transfer and i dont think i'll be here the next but well see how it goes. Ok well, is this letter long enough? (I asked him to be more detailed) I don’t think Ill be able to write this much again...K I love you all and let me know when you get the package

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Great Family Getting Baptized!

Elder Hill, Elder Roberts and Elder Moreno

Today for p day we got up at 5 to come to Maceio for my comps doctor appointment thing. Not sure for what but we waited forever and he was only with the doctor for 5 min and then we ate lunch and now are emailing before we take the bus back home, so i don’t have pictures to send now because i left that stuff at home.

The language is ok, I’m really no good at teaching yet but I’m understanding more. I think we teach alot of lessons. Last week we taught 30 total and I think our first week was our best with over 50 not sure exact number but our mission teaches alot of lessons. The kids here are cute, somtimes loud and distracting when we teach (most of the time). Interesting food? (I asked about what he eats every day) Rice, beans, meat, and cola sounds right, we eat with members everyday for lunch and on sundays lunch and dinner. I somtimes make my own breakfast and dinner like ham n cheese or cuscus, roman noodle type thing, cookies n milk (i dont like the milk here but I do like the milk from the cow, its the closest it comes to tasting like the milk from home and is cheaper than the milk you get at the store), hamburgers are good to make too. For the first time i bought frosted flake cereal and ate it last night before bed and was really good(cereal here is expensive, so for Christmas maybe some cap n crunch cereal? mac n cheese?) The ice-cream here is good too and different from american ice-cream and the churros here are my favorite. They fill them with duce de leite or chocolate with sugar coated its the best! Enough about food. Umm mosquitoes. (Then I asked how bad the mosquitoes were) Yes they have them year long, not sure if it gets worse but all depends where you live, some houses have more than others and the thing that keeps them off you is the fan. I have had dreams in portugues but the only thing is it is very crappy portugues and a little spanish too even though i dont know any spanish so figure that one out...He mentioned this because I told him I heard when you dream in the language you are learning that means you are getting pretty good.

Happy B-day Robert sorry the cubs lost right? Who won? Or is it still going? Thats sounds like perfect weather to me. I never know the temp here because they dont post it anywhere and dont have a tv and they do it in celcius and its just always hot in the morning and afternoon and doesnt cool down until around 3-4 in the afternoon when the sun starts its set...its only going to get worse though and more hot in the next 2 months and summer doesnt start until december.

Oh yeah we have this awsome family of 5 that we are going to baptize in 3 weeks at the end of this transfer and is awsome to see the progress they have made in just one week, They´ve given up smoking, drinking, and are getting married in 2 weeks which cost me 25 dollars but pretty cheap when you think about it for a wedding. Ive never seen a lady so excited! She calls us her two angels and just so awsome that her husband and two children agreed to baptism because it was originally going to just be her getting baptized. But two nights ago when we were teaching the whole family together for the first time they all agreed to do it together. We have some others we are working with and to mention this one couple. The husband loves me but they havent been to church in 3 weeks and arent really progressing and last night he told us he wouldnt give up drinking coffee so I dont know if we will end up baptising them. We tried just about everything with them so well see after this sunday if they progress or not.

Well I cant think of or remember much of any exciting stories from the past weeks but all is going well and already on the third week of the transfer! I think I´ll be leaving the next transfer but never know what happens. I just know the chances are that im getting a new comp which means one of us or both leave....Well thats it for this week, love you all and I did send a package home last week so let me know when you get it.


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Conference Week

yeah we do teach a lot of lessons but to be honest i am in one of the hardest places of the mission! haha i think that would make kevin cry, so yeah i am grateful to be in a place where everyone believes in Cristo. most other missionaries in other zones are getting 8-10 average baptisms a transfer and there is one place in our zone called penedo were you can average alot more than that but im not yeah i guess we are having sucess but could be alot better...Living conditions are well good I think, they all have flushing toilets i think and i mean idk they have electricity, its alot different from what we have in the states but livable. the weather is getting hotter i think idk but summer is december and when it gets hotter the people hear start wearing less clothing and becomes harder to teach but my comp said we will have to teach them to dress modestly, but even in the winter it didnt seem to me that they wore much clothing so we´ll see how it gets, their carnival here ive been told is hell on earth...conference was cool, we missed first session because we went to maceio for conference with the president for the lds and lzs and then returned in time for the second session, i watched all but the last session in portugues and thankfully was able to hear some in english. we woke up 5am for preisthood session sunday morning. Conference was good overall. And then monday we went back to maceio for zone conference with the president and i got my package and thanks for it, the cd player works and one other thing is they have ramen noodles here, its just called somthing different, and the president comes i think 1 or two weeks for the end of the transfer to interview us.

Hi mason, there are plenty of bugs here, Ive killed many spiders, caught many lizards(godzillas), rats, bats, monkeys but in one area called penedo in my zone there are these things that look just like monkeys and are really cool. Not sure what the temp is but is hot. love ya

k Well i think i found my way to stay a little bit in shape because ive been gaining weight but for the first time today ive lost 3 kilos which is alot and i think its from the soccer games we play every tuesday night, its fun and is the only running i get in the whole week. So well see if i continue to lose. Well i got the package im sending home and to my friends ready and if you want to help out with paying for them that would be awesome, its going to be expensive to send and i spent like 25-30 reais to make the pakages...idk beleza whatever works..I love you guys and thanks again for the goodies and prayers.

Love Brian
not sure if you got the photos i sent last week so i resent those also.were is ryan powell going on his miss? any others?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Photos from Arapiraca

It looks like they are desperate for some female attention, doesn't it?
It looks like Brian found a girlfriend after all. But Brian, kissing is not allowed on your mission!

Helena (88 yrs. old) Jeorge (86 yrs. old) are baptized! Such a great young couple.

The bullet that almost hit Brian! We are sure glad he was watched over!

First Week of 2nd Transfer...still in same area

Hey nice long letter i loved it.....umm dont want to spend too much time writing because i need to put all my photos on a cd for you guys and prepare it for the package i am sending...Idk how much the pakage is going to cost to send but some money would help i guess and im also sending one to my friends and think youll like them...About pakages, well i still didnt get the last one you sent but i go to maceio next week for zone conference and hopfully i will get it there because if not it will be another 4weeks till i get mail pakage..well my shaver hasnt worked for the last 3weeks and have learned to use my comps razor thingy and would be cool to get a cool razor thingy as well and an electric one like the one i used to have because its a fastershave for me and now takes me longer to shave..idk anything would be cool to get money etc....the money could help as well because we spend money to help our investigators in word of wisdom etc…ok enough about that.

Sunday was the last day of my first transfer and this week was the begining of my second! They did some changes to our district and now have two districts in this city and my comp is now the dl and i am a jr comp. We lost three people but gained 5 more and am looking forward to another transfer here. lets see christmas presents, well the only thing I can think of for the people is it is easy to burn movies so if you want to see if you can get me the dvd of mountain of the lord and if it has portugues on it or any other lds films etc...but i dont know if I’ll be in this area for christmas because the transfer date is two days before christmas so that will be funny if i have to move to a new area before christmas.

Today for pday we went to penedo again with the whole zone this time and spent the whole day there and went on a long hike through the jungly area and got muddy and messy but was lots of fun. So I probly have alot more I can tell but I need to get those fotos burned and no time really to do it so idk mabey my pakage will be a christmas pakage as well for you guys. K well love you all and will write more next week.