Monday, October 27, 2014

dia del brujas

I was going to send pictures . I brought my camera and everything but seeing as I just spent the last 10 minutes trying to figure out how to download them from my camera and aren't any closer, I'm thinking I'll do it another time.  It's a pain trying to do everything in Spanish.
That's really exciting to hear about Remington and Meredith (they are engaged and will be married December 30th in the Nauvoo Temple.)  It's great to hear about the whole family and the house.  I love hearing how the house is going.  To answer your questions, the tortillas are usually flour and the members feed us almost every night.  To answer another of your questions, they do have Halloween here but I think most people call it "Dia Del Brujas" or something like that.  It's day of the brujas. I have no idea what a bruja is though. (It means "Day of Witches" - thanks to the Spanish to English translator online.)

You asked where my companion was from.  He's from Guatemala.  I think the city is called Quetzaltenango.  I mentioned to him that my friend (my friend being Jared) got his mission call to Guatemala South. He told me that that part is really hot.  Also for Jared, my advice is learn the conjugations because they are a pain.  Other than that,  I really don't know what else.  Having more garments and socks than they say to bring would be convenient.

All the front doors on the homes have this little window, so when you're knocking on doors looking for people we always talk to them through that little window.  The houses are pretty third world.  Some of them though are pretty decent.  The third world part is nothing compared to constantly speaking Spanish. That's coming pretty well though.  I just wish it would come instantly.  On the topic of "third worldness," there is a lot of dogs on the street.  You mentioned a picture of a sink that Elder Konold had posted. I think you are talking about the big cement kind. Everybody has those. We have a regular kitchen sink too.  Well, it would be be normal if water more than dripped out of it.

Our church building is pretty cool.  Half of it is outside.  I should have taken pictures of that.
Anyway, it was great to hear what's happening.  I love you all.  Have a great week.  I'm going to try to send pictures again.
-Elder Jarvie

P.S. I finally got some pictures to download.  There is two of the city.  I'm in Guatemala City right now.  It limits my email size to like nothing so i can't send much as far as pictures. (I learned when I sent him pictures it worked best to just send one picture per e-mail.)

Monday, October 20, 2014

poco poco

I don't think I'm going to have a lot of time to write, mostly because I had 7 e-mails to read. Thank you everybody for those! And thank you madre, I got three of the biggest, bestest e-mails I've ever gotten in my life. It's amazing to hear that Jared is going to Guatemala! My mind was pretty much blown when you said that. About as much as when you said he was going to temple square. I was really confused by that. (Jared's mom was mad (but not the real kind of mad) that Jared made them wait until Emerson got off work to open his call, so she created a “fake call” where he was called to serve at temple square with the tabernacle choir through the language of music. He totally believed it for the first half of the letter, then figured out they had tricked him. It was pretty hilarious, if I do say so myself.) Tell him to study Spanish. Mostly so he doesn't have to suffer in the MTC. They force feed you Spanish all day in that place. Speaking of that, is he going to the MTC in Guatemala? I've heard that they close it some times of the year when there isn't a lot of people going out because it's so tiny. There are some perks to going to the Mexico MTC, like keeping your camera and having more free time than just P-day. But that wouldn't be as cool. 

It's different being here in Guatemala. It's third world for sure. I'll try to send some pictures next week. The area I'm in now, my first one, they just cleaned out. They had disobedient missionaries or something. So my trainer and I got put here starting from pretty much nothing. Also my trainer doesn't speak English, so that's a lot of fun. My Spanish is doing really good though. For less than two months, it's pretty freaking amazing. And it's improved a lot hearing it 24/7 with the whole comprehending what people are saying.

A lot of the houses are kind of like a house with no roof that has a house with a roof inside. There are a lot of little shops in the doors of what would be a house. It's kind of hard to explain. I'll have to send you some pictures of that too. A lot of them sell tortillas. Homemade tortillas are really common here.

One of my proudest moments so far was that I talked with a member about his avocado tree. I understood pretty much all of what he said except for the Spanish word for avocado. I had my Spanish dictionary with me so I pulled it out so we could look up what the word was. He pointed to a word. I read it. The word in English was “patient.” I was confused for a little while wondering what he meant by “patient tree.” We figured out it was wrong pretty quick, but just thought that was kind of funny. I know the word for tree because when I tell people I'm from Oregon and they have no idea what or where that is, I just tell them it's a lot like here but all the trees are pine or “pino” not to be confused with “pina” that's a pineapple.

As far as the whole missionary work thing is going, I'd say pretty good all things considered (and there is a lot to consider.) I'm pretty lost a lot of the time. It would probably help if I spoke better Spanish. I just follow my companion, smile real big and teach what I can. The Spanish will come I'm sure. The members always say “poco poco” which translates directly to “little little.” But judging by the context I'm pretty sure it means “little by little.” They also tell me Spanish is easy... like a lot. It's a lot easier when you've spoke it since birth. But honestly, it's coming just fine. It'll just take a little time. Poco poco. I love the times of the week when we're with the district and I can speak English. The weird thing is there are words I miss having. Like I wish there was a direct translation for the word “get,” or more then one way to say “yes.” In Spanish all I got is “si.” In English we have “yes, yeah, yep,” etc.

Also I should mention we have some investigators now. Some of them even committed to a baptism date. They're really cool people, even if I can't talk very well with them. I'd tell you more about that but I'm out of time. I miss and love you all. Talk to you next week. 

Elder Jarvie 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


Things are going alright.  I'm getting kind of sick of always being in the same place.  General Conference a few days ago was amazing.  The good thing about being in the MTC is that you get to watch it in English.  It would have been cool to listen to the Spanish talks in Spanish though.  Which by the way was super legit that they did that.  Just a week or two ago my district was talking about if there will ever be conference talks in other languages.  That question was answered pretty quick.  There was some really good talks.  I really enjoyed President Eyring's talk Sunday morning about revelation.
Last P-day they changed the e-mail time because we got to go on a tour of the city.  It was really cool. It doesn't really feel like Guatemala in the MTC, so it was a fun experience to be out there.  We went to a relief map of Guatemala.  You should try to Google pictures of it, it's really cool.  I doubt there are too many giant relief maps of Guatemala so it shouldn't be too hard to find.  It's crazy how steep some of the mountains are.  They said the map is almost perfectly accurate, which is crazy considering it was made by a bunch of guys riding around on horses.  The map was made a long time ago and the story about it is pretty cool.
The other thing we did that day that was really neat was we went to a market.  It was underground.
There was two parts to it.  The first one was a meat and fruit market.  The meat shop was pretty much like you see in pictures, just big hunks of meat hanging from hooks.  There was mountains of fruit. Some of it was different looking fruit too.  Anyway, it was pretty cool.
I leave for the real world on Tuesday.  It is pretty exciting.  The days here are the same most of the time.  I can't wait to just be able to walk more.  I've heard that our mission president is a cool guy.  All but one person in my district is going to my mission.  Somebody here, I'm not sure who, has a friend who is in the Guatemala City East mission right now.  The best news I've heard is that mission president doesn't have strict music rules, so I'm hoping that's true.
It's really pretty here in a lot of places.  It was really neat to be able to see things when I was out on the tour, because really all I've seen of Guatemala is what I could on the drive from the airport to the CCM.  It's really green. Like really green.  Even parts of the city look like a jungle.  There were some amazing buildings when we went downtown. There is a big green palace and a cathedral-ish thing, some sort of Catholic building.  It's too bad they're in the Central Mission so I won't get to go inside or anything.  I did hear that the map was in my mission though.
The culture here seems really cool.  There are some really neat and different places and people here.  There is amazing artwork and architecture and some really poor places too.  The last part of the tour we drove past a community that was pretty much a steep valley coated in shacks.  I can't remember what they call the places in general but I think that one in specific was called the Limonada (or something lemonade in English).
I can't wait to be able to speak enough Spanish to be able to talk to people.  Or even just to talk to people with the Spanish I do know.  I can teach the lessons alright, and can usually understand words I know.  I just don't know a whole ton.  That should be fixed in a few months though.  And if they go as fast as this one has, that should be in no time.  The first few days here felt like the longest ever, and I'm sure the first few in the field will too.  But the weeks are never long.  And as little as it feels like I accomplish, some days at the end of the week I'm a lot better than I was.  My Spanish is coming along a lot better. I'd even say it's going good.  
Things here are alright. Sometimes the supervisors are idiots (I mean this in the kindest way).  A lot of the teachers are really good though.  We've been really lucky with teachers.  The first two we had were amazing.  They changed our afternoon teacher last week, so we don't have Hermano Ruiz any more, so that's too bad.  Our new teacher's alright too, and we only have one more week.
Before I forget, I got your letter last week that you mailed me.  I just forgot to tell you.  And I got a Dear Elder letter from Michaela.  On the topic of letters, thank Sister Dabel for her letter.
I don't have much time left to write, so last thought is I love and miss todo de ustedes.  I'm sending a letter home today hopefully.  I'll talk to you next week.  It might just be a small letter next week because we are leaving and I don't know how much writing time we will have.  Goodbye.
Elder Jarvie