Tuesday, July 12, 2011

July 12, 2011: Hermana Bowles

Hola Familia!

It's amazing how it's already been another week and I'm sitting here with only thirteen hours left in Provo!!!!!!! AAAAHH!!!! The best news of the week was that Hermana Brown is coming with us! Her flight is official at 3:00 in the morning, along with three other elders going to Lima Central who also had late visas. Hermana Brown's really supposed to be here---she'd never wanted to go on a mission, got the impression to go, turned in her papers that week, got her call five days later, finished school three weeks ago, flew to California for a couple days with her family, flew home to pack, flew to Provo, and three weeks later is on a flight with us for Lima. It's amazing how the Lord gets things done on His timetable and if we're needed somewhere then it doesn't matter if it's "fast."

You should be so proud that the other best news of the week is that my bags are underweight.....49.5 pounds!!!! Amanda McClellan finished ironing her skirt while we were talking and ended up helping me shift things around in my suitcases to make them under and the final thing that helped was splitting up my chacos! Let's just hope that the airport scale is really lenient and matches the one in our residence hall. I really have no idea what I'd take out to send home because I'm at the bare minimum of everything. I kind of wish I had that mini roll carry on and could use my backpack as a carry on, but it will be nice not juggling a third bag. Plus, Hermana Bell's mom found this paper in her mission packet stuff that said we can only have "2 bags of 44 pounds and one 17 pound carry on." All I can say is that I hope it isn't true. Word of warning to anyone going on a foreign mission:� DON'T FORGET THAT THEY GIVE YOU TWICE THE BOOKS! I wasn't worried about stuffing my "extra two pounds of stuff" into my backpack when I first got to the MTC but panicked when I realized I had to fit double of everything in Spanish and English, plus Spanish grammar textbooks. My companions think it's funny that I completely look like a turtle with my backpack stuffed full of books. Pray that the zipper doesn't break until I'm off the airplane and that the airport people are nice to us missionaries in the airport:) All three of us will definitely miss the elders and I think they'll miss us, too. Yesterday after class they started their regular beat-boxing tune and used the recording feature on our spanish TALL program on the computer to tape themselves. One was using his cane (he has a broken foot) to hit the legs of the desk, another was whacking the trashcan with a water bottle, others were making weird noises and scatting, another was flipping pages in a book. When we played the recording back it actually sounded kind of cool. All seven of them are so hysterical. We're like family.

Wednesday, the Hermanas ate lunch with President Brown (MTC President)! It was so cool! He was walking around with his paper bowl of chocolate icecream and asked if he could sit by us. He asked us about our missions and where we were from. I think it's so cute to watch him during the week eating with all of the missionaries.

This last Sunday was the busiest day of my life because we literally had meetings or something scheduled every minute from 6:30 when we woke up until lights out at 10:30. I never get headaches, but all of the sudden my head felt like it wanted to explode all day long. The funny thing, though, was that yeah I was tired, but the day had been so fantastic that I didn't care. Richard Heaton spoke on how repentance gained its horrible painful reputation through language translation and how it is actually a joyful process because we are turning towards God--and who wouldn't want that??!? I wish everyone could hear him speak because he was great at picking apart scriptures and explaining the language translations from Greek to Latin to English. I gained a whole new respect for the scriptures as actual books, too, and for how important language is. Words are so important! Devotionals here are the best because I learn so much!

I wish I could speak Spanish more than anything so I could stop feeling like a salesman and more like a teacher. We Hermanas are getting better at teaching. Hermana Redd told us all that "the hermanas have really changed since their first visit with Abraham three weeks ago." At least we're progressing. We taught "Juan" and "Mario" for the last times and it was actually sad to think we won't see them anymore....even if they are fake. Our teachers said that was a good sign because it shows we're really starting to care about the investigator and working out of just "teaching lessons." I love my companions and are really sad that it's only a matter of hours before we're not together anymore. Luckily the Lima MTC is really small and so we'll still be able to see each other all the time. We're so close.

Love always,

Hermana Bowles

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