August 26, 2019


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Turns out humidity is not a thing here!!!

Hey guys!!I'm no longer in the United States! I have officially landed and begun my mission in the Country of the Dominican Republic in a small area called Puerto Plata, Playa Oeste. My Trainer is named Elder Carlos Ciezar who is from Costa Rica. And no, he does not speak English. How's that for a fun surprise?! It for sure was for me. Either way, this week started with Sunday. We hoped on a plane and took off at 12:30 and flew all night. (We being the group of 20 of us from the Provo MTC who are going to my mission.) We then got to New York and changed planes to the DR. Landed at the Santiago Airport and the mission president and his wife picked us up and took us to the mission home. We were there for the rest of Monday and Tuesday. During that time we were all interviewed and we recieved a bunch of training on the slang of the DR and what we should not do while we are here. For example, we are not allowed to drink the tap water, and we are never supposed to have more than DP$500 with us. No matter what...(DP$50 =US$1) And a bunch of other fun rules like that. We recieved our assignments on Tuesday of this week, and as President Cowan was reading them off he got closer to my name and then called the name of my companion and said, "Have fun!! He doens't speak English, so this will be a very good experience for you!!" Tuesday morning we all woke up at like 5 so we could be to the place we transfer at 6:30. Then the group of 6 of us going to Puerto plata jumped on a bus and off we went. Wendsday was a really long day. We made it to Puerto Plata and then I unpacked my clothing and got moved into the house. Then at 3:00 we went out and started working. Currently most of the people we are teaching are youth between the ages of 11-16. They are all super cool and love basketball, a lot. Then really the rest of this week has been trying to run as fast as my trainer and understand what is happening. For the first day or two it was completly impossible to understand anything that was happening, but after that it has gotten a lot easier. I have learned more of their accent, and now I get about 80% of what is said. Occassionaly I have to ask for a work to be repeated, or for a word to be "translated," but for the most part I know what is happening. Now I just have to work on responding to questions with the proper responses. The Spanish here is not a ton different than the Spaninsh at home though. They use several slang terms that are new, but they are fairly easy to understand and learn. I'm pretty sure that at this point Elder Ciezar is tired of answering my questions on what a word means. I feel like I'm getting a hang of the language though. The culture here is super crazy though. As you enter the road system your mindset has to entirely change. The people do not follow traffic laws, the police do not do anything about it, and everything is your fault. ent where it is the fault of the other person. If they cut you off and you hit them it is your fault for not paying attention, and because of such mentality, there are actually very few accidents with just natives. It is actually really cool to watch, but a bit scary to be a part of. Now to my area. I'm in the area of Playa Oests (west beach) in the zone of Puerta Plata. This is apparently the softest area of the mission with the nicest houses and most food, but it is still fairly poor. This is the area of the country where people come for vacation, so everything is a bit expensive here too. Apparently in the rest of the mission water bottles are only DP$10, but here they are DP$25, so on and so forth. But it is all so much less expensive than the US, so I haven't noticed a difference. Now to my subject title, humitity is actually not "a" thing here. It is the only thing. Therefore making it "the" thing. The average temperature here is about 95 on an average day, and about 2,000,000% humidity. I haven't been dry since I got here, but on the bright side my fingers haven't cracked since I got here!!!! It is something new, but I guess if that is the worst thing that happens that all is well. By the law of averages not much 


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Dominican Republic Santiago Mission
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