Date

August 31, 2015

Area

La Rioja, Argentina

Companion

Elder Dos Santos

Week 7! First week here!

Hello! So, this week has been so hectic, and I dont know where to start...

Starting with last tuesday. So, Tuesday, after all the flights and traveling for a full 35 hours at least, we finally arrived in cordoba. some of you have maybe seen the photo of all of us who arrived on tuesday in front of the temple there ( literally right in front of the mission home!) so that was pretty cool. We all met with the mission president and his wife, and we got our first taste of argentine food! empanadas are very, very good.
Oh, and everything is in spanish, and everyone speaks in a very weird spanish accent, and they have a verb tense that they didnt teach in the MTC (the language has been pretty tough so far.)
And so after we had dinner with them, we went to a hotel for the night, (we got to cordoba about 5 in the evening)

In the morning we went to several different places to make sure our visas were ready, and to become legal in the country. at one time we had to wait for a while for people to be processed and so the missionaries helping us had us go contact people on the streets. It was incredibly difficult and was not fun. at all.

Afterwards, we went back to the mission home to meet our trainers. (we all gathered in a circle and the mission president would call out our names, and then our trainers, we would get all excited, take a picture, horray!)

So, my trainer is Elder Dos Santos, from Brazil ( so he pretty much speaks like a native, and very little english...) (lucky me haha) but really, he is one of the best missionaries in the mission and I am really lucky to have him as my trainer. He does speak enough english for me to understand what his is saying in spanish, but it is still pretty hard for me.

Our bus from cordoba to my first area, La Rioja, left at midnight, and it is a 6 hour ride to cordoba. So I have been exhausted pretty much all week.

La Rioja has 3 major areas, Universidad, La rioja, and one other above it which I cant remember the name. Dos Santos and I are in Universidad, named because there is a university here. The city part is in La Rioja, but here in universidad, it is much like lockwood back home if you know what I mean, but probably worse. There is trash everywhere, no grass (people instead water the dirt to keep it from being too dusty...) But the people are always friendly, and Dos santos knows how to connect with them pretty well. All the houses and buildings here are made out of concret, no wood, (no lumber around here for miles) and some houses dont have doors. Something about the humilitly of this place is charming though. I honestly like it here, besides the garbage and the heat (it is going to be over 120 degrees F in december and january :'( ) the people too are starting to grow on me.

The past couple of days missionary work wise, well, Ive hardly done anything. Dos santos talks nearly the entire time to contacts and investigators, Simple becuase I dont know the language well enough! I am starting to get better at it though, picking up on more words every now and then. Memorizing words too has seemed to become a lot easier now that I am here. (the gift of tounges is coming through!)

But seriously Dos Santos really knows what he is doing. He can get a contact so easily, and he is such a good teacher, both to me and investigators. Oh did I mention that I am walking into the mission with 3 baptisms? Yeah, there are 3 people that Dos Santos and his previous companion were teaching that want to or are going to be baptized. plus one more acctually. During a lesson on saturday, I invited a young girl *about 9 years old) to be baptized and she accepted!

That has pretty much been the work so far. Lots of walking, dust everywhere... (seriously a ton of dust!) Still strugling with the language, but I am starting to progress a lot. I know that it will not come in a week or two, but if I keep working at it, it will come!

So, Mondays are my P-days now, try not to send dear elders or packages or letters (I wont get them for 2 or 3 months) There isn't much more to report on I think, but If there is something you want to ask me, please let me know!

I miss you all! I cant wait till next week to hear from you all!




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