Monday, December 30, 2013

Guinea Pig

First of all, yes, can you contact that Peruvian lady in Utah? That would be nice. Also, if people write to me through dearelder.com, do you know how I can write back, since I'm pretty sure I don't get an address or anything with it? If I remember correctly, it's just a name of who it's from. Also, sorry about you being sick! Hope you get better soon!

Yeah, I actually got an email from Sienna this morning and she mentioned that she'd be going to Atlanta. I told her to look out for our family there. Hahaha that's funny about Jennie noticing the not-being-able-to-sing thing. Yeah, it's not just Peruvians. I've noticed it with my CCM comp's comp, who's from Mexico. We have cambios, or transfers, tomorrow and we find out tonight who stays and who goes and who trains and all that. The Hermana from Mexico that I just mentioned is sure she's leaving because she's been here for 6 months. She's intense, so we're all terrified of what will happen if she doesn't get transferred. Anyway, apparently it's tradition for the missionaries to meet up an hour before cambios in a McDonalds near the capilla. Apparently it gets packed. Tons of missionaries with both Spanish and English buzzing in the air. We're getting 17 new missionaries. 10 Hermanas and 7 Elders.

It was really nice to see you all on Christmas! And thanks again for my presents! Oh I forgot to mention this, but I was really excited about my chocolate-covered pretzels with peppermint! But yeah, I already cannot wait to see you on Mother's Day (Presidente Borg always recommends using Skype)! It was kinda funny to see you all wearing sweaters and stuff while I was sitting there, like, sweating and stuff haha. I'm so lucky to have the family I have. Hope you all had an awesome Christmas! For those who may read my blog and not hear what happened on Christmas, it's kinda like 4 of our holidays in one: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Fouth of July, and New Years. Tons of turkey, opening presents (at midnight), a trillion fireworks at midnight, and everyone going around hugging and wishing each other a feliz navidad at midnight. The fireworks were insane. It was incredibly loud, as if this city couldn't get any louder, and it looked like the world was on fire. Pockets of fireworks and sparks and everything everywhere you look. And it sounded like war. Apparently the same thing will happen for New Years, but more fireworks.

I feel like I should've used more Spanish with you guys, like had a conversation with Dad or something, and shown you a little more of what I can do. But it's all good. I feel better about my Spanish this week. It really has gotten a lot better. And it feels good to receive compliments about that, too. I feel like I can understand about 90-95% of everything I hear, and my speaking is getting tons better as well. I feel great when I can have a successful conversation with someone, use correct grammar, and speak faster, all of which I've started to see happen this week. I'm also starting to think in Spanglish more and more haha. I actually almost spoke a little Spanglish with you guys on Christmas. I guess that's a good sign?

I ate guinea pig, or cuy, on Saturday. Good, but weird. Tastes like chicken, but the skin's kinda tough after being cooked. And there's not much meat, so you eat with your hands and have to look for the meat. I probably got about 5 bites out of my piece. And I know I broke some of that little guys bones in the process of trying to find meat. I have pics of it, which you'll see when I send you all my pics. Yeah, if you could send a flash drive or something, that'd be great. Apparently I might be eating rabbit and maybe cat sometime in the near future.

Thanks for everything! I feel like there's more I need to say, but I'll try to include that later. I'm gonna try to respond to other emails. Oh yeah, I was really happy to get an email from Brian and Grace!

Have a great week and Happy New Year!

Hermana Hymas

Monday, December 23, 2013

Feliz Navidad!

Aw man, everything's melted?! Oh well, looks like Lydia won't see snow after all. I'm sorry to hear about Aunt Dawn. Yay for Brian's BYU application making priority deadline! That's good news!

The mission Christmas party went really well! It was fun! It started at 1pm, and went til 9pm. We got there, changed into p-day clothes, had games and ate popcorn, changed back into missionary clothes, had a group picture, started the skits (Our's went really well! Everyone loved it!), ate a delicious American dinner (Yay! No rice!) with wonderful dessert, watched more skits, and finished with a couple of messages. We watched the old classic "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (In Spanish, but with English subtitles, and of course, the songs were in English. Man, I love that little movie.) and a little like 10 minute movie about the nativity. It was nice. So, I can't believe this, but there were only like maybe 4 skits that were missionary appropriate, including ours. They all just had like weirdness. Woot woot, Magdalena Zone! Oh and at the end of the party as we were leaving, we got a little gift, we got little Christmas cards from the Mission President and his wife, and from the First Presidency, a Christmas card with hideous pictures of everyone. Honestly, no one looks really like themselves haha. And we got a popcorn ball (smelled so sweet) and a temple recommend holder that's personalized for the mission. That's kinda cool. Okay, about the guinea pig, yes, I should still be eating that on Saturday I believe, and I was told that I'll also be eating rabbit soon. So...yeah, we'll see how those are.

I love "Sound of Music"! And "I Have Confidence" is totally my anthem! For the mission at least! I remember saying that to a couple of people before I left. I think Grace was one of them. Sister Toni Smith was another, because she loves that movie. But yeah, I remember watching that right before I got set apart and during that song just thinking about how much it applied to my feelings about my mission haha. If there are two things I learned from that movie before I left, it's that that song applied to me at that time, and that Maria is so cool. I want her to be my Governess.

Yes, Allison, my bed is awesome. Enjoy it. Awesome about David singing in Church. I so wish I could sing well. Haha I've met a couple people here who say I have a beautiful singing voice. There's a lady in the ward who everytime she sees me she always calls me the "the hermana with the beautiful voice" and how she wants to hear me sing again. HA! If only. Okay, I'm not bad, but I'm not like, good. Remember, no one here can sing...so yup. Which brings me to last night, we went caroling to less active families. We never started on key. We did once, only when I hummed the beginning note. Unfortunately my companion and I had to leave and go home early because yesterday I got really sick. Like really sick. I'm doing better now, but I just had a bunch of terrible things happening to my body. Stomach, head, and body aches, I was freezing when it wasn't even cold, but my face was burning up, and I felt faint. I'm pretty sure it was something I ate the day before. I just felt all-around terrible. It got to the point where I just couldn't continue. So we had to leave. I felt really bad. But, we are going caroling with another family tonight, so at least I'm not sick for that.

Oh yeah, Presidente Borg said that Christmas is just an all day p-day for us. My comp wants to visit a bunch of member families. Also, we have permission to stay up and watch fireworks tomorrow night as long as we're in our house. It's tradition here for Peruvians to set off fireworks at midnight on the 24th. Also, they have a dinner at midnight as well, and we've been invited to have that with the Stake President's family who we live behind, so we might be doing that too.

I miss you guys a lot. However, it seems like things more or less just get better and better here. I cannot wait to talk to you all on Wednesday! Super looking forward to it! I'm trying to think of everything I want to say during our 40 minutes.
See you in 2 days! Love you!

Hermana Chrisanne Hymas




Monday, December 16, 2013

Week Five

Oh man, I don't even know where to begin. I don't know what I did to be blessed with such awesome people in my life. Friends and family. Ustedes son lo maximo. Oh the Messiah! How was that! I forgot to tell you all that a couple weeks ago was a stake Christmas devotional thing, and they had a choir and singers sing solos. Good thing the soloists were good (most of them), because as I said before, people in Peru cannot sing for their lives. But yeah, two songs from the Messiah were sung. In English, of course. It made me think of the Messiah back home. Thanks for your thoughts about my experiences so far. Yeah, Dad kinda said the same thing. And I agree. It's super hard right now, but I know this is strengthening me. I've only been in for 2 months, and I'm already feeling it. I feel like my Spanish is improving though! I have a long way to go however. It really is poco a poco. But, I'm definitely improving! People have even told me this. That feels kinda good. Interesting thing happened yesterday. We went to teach/share a message with a less active family. First of all, I wasn't too thrilled about going to their house only because it reeks of wet dog, which I'm pretty sure is the worst smell in the world. And their dog likes to freak out on people and jump and lick and stuff. No me gusta. But their really nice. My comp talked with them for a long time, and then we shared a message on the Atonement. I bore my testimony a little in Spanish, but then the son, since he and the daughter (both in their 20s) understand and speak some English (a few people speak a little here because a lot of them learn it in school), said that if I wanted to, I could share my testimony in English because they could understand me. And they kinda wanted me to. So I did. And I don't know what it is about my mission...maybe because it's been rough and I've felt the love of the Lord so much recently and learned so much at the same time...but I got kinda emotional. I bore my testimony on what the Atonement means to me and families as well. Afterwards, the son thanked me for sharing. He said it was really powerful, and that when I can share it in Spanish, it'll be even more powerful. The Spirit was totally there, but when I got to share in English... Interesting...

So I should probably tell you where I am since I keep forgetting haha. I'm in an area called Magdalena. We have everything from upper middle class people, to really dirt poor people. Our investigators are pretty good, but we have a problem in our area with a lot of couples not being married. We literally have I think three or four right now who are still not married. "Castidad, castidad, castidad!" Everyone I meet too, I can't remember if I said this already or not. Literally everyone I meet who finds out I'm from PA always says, "Oh, like Transylvania. Like Dracula." And then I have to explain the difference and so many of them are surprised that it's not the same thing... Siempre. Hey, so a couple weeks ago, our ward had a movie night. It was "17 Miracles" in English with Spanish subtitles. The missionaries got permission to watch it. It's about the Mormon pioneers. Anyway, Jens Nielson and his family are characters in it. And at the end, they display a bunch of facts and pics of Jens Nielson. Cool! Also...I'll be eating guinea pig on the 28th...yum?

Some more Christmas stuff. First of all, I cannot wait for Friday when we have an all day Christmas party with our entire mission! That'll be fun! Our zone has to do a skit, but our ZLs decided we're gonna do a band. So with bottles filled with different amounts of water, while blowing into the top of them, we're performing Jingle Bells and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. It's fun. Haha we had to perform Jingle Bells for a ward this week, and when we were practicing before, one Hermana from Argentina asked me how to say "Jingle Bells". I told her, she practiced, but it still sounds funny. Haha their English is kinda funny, because they have the same sounds in Spanish, like "el" in "bells", but they cannot get it, even if they say "el" correctly. Christmas: I sent you a invite thing from the lady's skype we're using. Want to try for 6 pm or something? I'm not sure what time that is there, if it's the same or if it's 7. But my comp wants to skype her fam around 7-ish our time, so what do you think. Also, this is kinda cool. Some missionaries said that, especially with big families, their family is hooking skype up to a big TV and putting a webcam there or something. That's cool, but I don't know how the mic would work. I'd test it first. Don't know if that's something you'd be interstested in instead of crowding around a computer. I don't know. Do what you want. Doesn't matter to me. Thanks for the pic of the house with snow too! I'm jealous!

Ahhhh! Yeah, I'd love to get mail from people! My favorite!

Ugh, don't have any more time! Talk to you more next week! I love you all so much!

Su hija, 
Hermana Chrisanne Hymas

Monday, December 9, 2013

Week Three

First, I have some disappointing news. We just got a letter from Presidente Borg saying that we won't be doing the 5 minute call beforehand for Christmas anymore, and we only get 40 minutes to skype. QUE EN EL FREAKING MUNDO?!?! I'm not too thrilled about this. I'm really really really looking forward to talking to you guys! Haha I don't think we'll be getting iPads any time soon. There are some sketchy people here and we've even been instructed to be careful with our crappy little nokia phones. In some places, people will rob you. It's happened to one sister already with her phone. Hmm...as for the sights from pinterest, I don't know. I've seen tons of the little poor colorful houses in the mountains, and I've been to Miraflores for my foot. Last P-day, we went to Charca y Mar. It's a couple hours away in Lima North mission. Since our mission is so small, every month we get the opportunity to go outside the mission. It was pretty cool. I'll have to send pictures when I have time. I don't know yet about the whole flash drive idea. Hang on for a little bit, I might be able to catch up on pics hopefully soon. Yeah, just hang on and I'll decide what would probably be best. Charca y Mar was a big beach place with caves and cliffs and weird hari krishna (don't know how to spell it) stuff. This P-day we went into central Lima, like central central. Like, if you google image Lima, Peru, you'll probably see that. We went to the area that was my cover photo on facebook for a little bit. Some parts are pretty cool, some parts are not. Soooo many people. Too many. And it's super hot, so that makes it like 20x worse. And we also took a bus up a mountain where you could see all of Lima. Wow. What a populated city. No open space at all. Everywhere is occupied by buildings or houses. Or people.

I'm still getting used to the culture here. It kinda weird. There are many things, I don't know if I'll be able to remember them all. First of all, everyone is so slow. Always late. They love to take their time. Also, they're all really blunt. I've heard so many insults that they just don't consider insults. You don't know how many times I've heard people talk about others (or sometimes to their face) who they think is fat or ugly. Everyone here is also really bad at singing. We're talking really, really bad. Drives me crazy haha. Haha Presidente Borg even told me that in my first interview with him! This week we had multizones with Elder Waddell of the Seventy. He's really cool. And really tall. He served in Spain though, so he spoke with the lisp. The entire thing was in Spanish. He didn't speak a word in English, except when he met us all one by one. All he said to me was basically commenting on how nice PA is and how hopefully the temple will be done before I come home. But yeah, I love our mission conferences. I always want to be so much better than I am. And Hermana Borg continues to be the coolest lady on the planet. Oh by the way, to answer your question from a few weeks back, I don't remember what activity it was, but Sammy Castleton's the best, so I'm sure it was a blast!  And yes, Sister Bendixen is awesome. Oh and thanks for keeping me a little updated on my friends in their missions! It's cool to see what everyone's up to. Sienna and I have emailed a couple times. She's doing really well and really loves the MTC, which is good.

This week has been pretty good. I'm still struggling a TON, but spiritually, it's been pretty good. My rough spots are always in the morning. I don't know why, every morning I'm just reminded of how incredibly frustrated I am and how incredibly difficult this is. Really, this is the hardest thing I've ever done. So a few days ago during personal study, I read the April 2013 Conference talk by Elder Holland, "Lord, I Believe". Wow. It was exactly what I needed. I couldn't hold back my tears this time. I think it's just because I've been feeling so alone and so inadequate and so frustrated lately. But he talks a lot about growing your faith, and "only believing" being a very good place to start. I feel like no one around me day to day understands what I'm going through. They don't understand how difficult this really is for me. Many, many times I think to myself, "If I can express myself so super well, sometimes perfectly I think, then why the heck am I serving here? I feel like I'm wasting my time not being able to do what I know I can do in English." Does that make sense? Well, I've just been going off of just a pure belief that things will get better, even though I don't understand how. But I believe that my being here is not a mistake. I don't know it's hard to express in this short amount of time I have to write. I recommend reading it. It was just super comforting. I find even when I talk about that talk and the things I learned and the love I felt while reading it, I still get a little emotional. So far on the mission, I've learned that the love of God is very personal. He knows exactly what we need. He knows the exact words and messages I've needed lately. I can't begin to tell you how loved I've felt lately in the midst of feeling so alone at the same time. To go along with this, thank you so much for your prayers.

Theme of the week. Believe in the impossible. The other night, I was feeling pretty down, so I read some letters people wrote me and sent or gave to me before my mission. It was nice. Sister Vernon's card had a quote from Alice in Wonderland on the front. Something about "imagining up to six impossible things before breakfast." Sister Vernon went on to say how she loves this quote and how often, so many things in the mission seem impossible, but they're not. Believe in the impossible. That seemed to be the theme with this morning's zone conference as well. Have faith, y'all. "Impossible things are happening everyday." Props to whoever can get that reference. I know Grace can.

Christmas! I miss the Christmas season SOOO MUCH!!!! I'm super jealous of you all right now. Partly because it so doesn't feel like Christmas, and partly because I just miss home during the holidays. And CHRISTMAS MUSIC! I miss Christmas music so much! Ugh...I'm so sick of my comp playing EFY music everyday. Spanish EFY music to make it worse. Haha want to know something funny? Fruitcake (or Paneton) is really big here during the holidays. They looove it. It's funny, I've told some of them that fruitcake is kinda a joke in America, and they either think it's funny, or they just don't get it. Oh yeah, and Mom, after my mission I never want rice again. Ever. I have to eat a mound of it every day. I so don't want to gain weight on this mission... That's so fun that the Wood's are coming up for Christmas! That should be a blast! Ooo I miss American food so much too! Just because. And also because everyday I have meat (usually chicken), a mound of rice, and potatoes. Mmm...American food...during the holidays too! That's even better! I saw the Christmas devotional last night, but the whole thing was in Spanish and I didn't understand it all, so I want to find the talks in English and print them off to read if I can. Okay, since we won't have the 5 minutes before Christmas to talk (bummer!), we have to coordinate through email when to Skype and stuff. I'm still super upset about the only 40 minutes to talk. Not nearly enough! Oh before I forget! They handed out mail at multizones, and I got two boxes from you guys! I think one is my Christmas package, so I haven't opened it yet, and I thought the other was my insoles from the doctor so I opened it, and it was the Charlie Brown Christmas tree!!! I love it! I assembled it that night and it's sitting on my desk thing right next to my package! My comp didn't get it at first, so I had to explain it to her. But I love it! Thanks!

As always, I feel like I'm missing some thing I need to say, but I can't remember, so I'll leave it at this right now. I love you all so much. Thanks for everything. And thanks for being the best family ever. Until next week!

Hermana Hymas

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Week Two

Yep, I can totally relate to Sienna's comment. I often wonder why the heck I'm speaking Spanish if I can express myself so well in English and I feel so comfortable talking to people in English. I just feel like I'm taking a back seat and watching more than doing right now, just because there's only so much I can do. And it's a little embarrassing when people don't understand me, or they laugh at my Spanish or something. That doesn't happen very much, but it's happened. Oh, I cannot wait for the moment where I'll be able to be comfortable with this dang laguage. Thanks for sending me the rest of that last email! It was nice to read other things that are going on. And yes, I'm okay with my email address being out there. I love getting emails! And I try to get to them whenever I can. I couldn't respond to Sister Pace last week, but I got to this week. That's so cool about seeing Elder Christofferson speak at the temple! I have to agree with you about the feeling you had. I love this gospel and I know that it is true, and that there's no greater message to share with the world than the message of Jesus Christ and this gospel. I've felt that more on the mission. There've been times during companionship study where we watch a clip from The District or something from an apostle. And boom. I'm hit with that feeling again. Stronger. There've been a couple time's where I've fought back tears, just because I know how true and special this gospel is, and how blessed I am to have it. There was one I remember where Elder Eyring and Elder Holland spoke about the difficulties of missionary work, and related it to Christ's ministry. It was way good. They basically said, yes, missionary life is very hard, but in those moments where you get rejected, spit on, laughed at, you stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the greatest missionary that ever walked the earth: Jesus Christ. We don't understand everything Christ went through, but in our hard times, we get a small glimpse of it.

Thanks for sending me a pic of the Peruvian nativity! I want to find one to either send home or save for when I come home. I don't know which is better. Do you know anything about that Peruvian lady that lives in UT? Does she only send things to those who live in UT? Ah, Christmas. It doesn't feel like Christmas here. It gets hotter and hotter. Although last night we saw some houses with a little bit of Christmas lights out front. I miss Christmastime in the States! It's the best! I was talking to Hermana Borg this week (we had a conference for new missionaries, which was inspiring. And it was fun to see the Elders from my district in the CCM again) and she said she really misses the holidays in the USA. Oh, guess what I realized this morning, I probably won't have a Christmas with Brian for 4 Christmas's. That's weird. And sad. I miss you guys. I have the best family in the world. And the holidays are my favorite because holidays at home are my favorite. Oh yeah, Christmas here: so apparently we have a big party as a mission on Dec. 20th. Then on Christmas...I don't really know. In Peru, they celebrate Christmas at midnight on the 24th, stay up all night, and then sleep all day the next day. So visiting people on Christmas might be difficult haha. But, I'll be able to Skype with you all from a member's home on Christmas day! Yay! I'll also have a 5 minute time before Christmas sometime where I can call home and confirm when we're speaking on Christmas.


Oh by the way, how was Thanksgiving?! I miss that too. And my Thanksgiving was....eh. I had fish for lunch at a member's home. And it was staring at me the whole time. Yep, eyes and everything. Good thing I didn't have to eat that part though. Phew. And that day was just rough because no one we were supposed to teach was home. We had two lessons that day. One was with a 10 year old recent convert who just woke up from a nap and didn't want to hear us, and the other was with the stake president's family (we live in a little room right behind their house).


So Sundays here. Sundays are good. I have a good ward, although I can't really speak to many people. This Sunday though for some reason I was just feeling really down. Don't get me wrong, I have good days, but sometimes I just get in a bad mood because of how much I struggle with the language. So I felt really alone and just down at Church on Sunday, and then right before the 3rd hour, a lady starts speaking to me in English! She's Peruvian, but she's lived in Texas for the last 25 years. She was just visiting for the week. She was comforting though. She talked about how hard it is to learn a language, but that it's possible. And then she was like, "And I thought you might want to have something from your country." And she gave me a little bag of American candy! It might not seem like much, but that really made my day.


I have to go, but I'll write you more next week. And I'll tell you about P-day this week. Charca y Mar! It was pretty cool! Sorry about the pics! I'll try to keep them coming!

Love you all so much! Thanks for everything!

Hermana Hymas
 

 
Mototaxi!!
 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Week One in the Mission

First, about m missionary plaque, go ahead and put Ether 12:4 on it. It's a scripture I've come back to many times on the mission so far, and it pretty much goes hand in hand with why I'm here and what message I want to share with others. You got a name from Peru in the temple? That's cool! I got one from Germany once here in the Lima temple. And another time, Hermana R got one with my birthday! Woot woot!

Yeah, I heard about the typhoon in the Philippines! That's nuts! I also heard some stories of the missionaries there. Crazy stories, but they all ended up being okay. Yep, the Lord looks out for us. Fun fact, in a park today, we had a mini earthquake. Like, mini mini. Just a tremble. We had at least one of those in the CCM as well, but it was during the night and I slept through it. I went to see some Incan architecture today too! That was pretty cool! I'll have to send pictures next time. No time today. :(

So, Peru has some pretty spastic birds. They're annoying. First of all, a bunch of them hoot all the live long day like owls. Also, their flapping is so loud. There are some that like to run around and freak out on the top of our roof. They're loud. Oh, funny story: this week I was working out outside our room (our apartment is just a room with a bathroom), and I saw a couple birds freaking out, fly away, and one of them lost a bunch of feathers, flew into a window on a nearby house, fell and died. All really fast. Well, I'm pretty sure it died. Both thumps, hitting the window and hitting the ground, were loud so....yeah. Okay, maybe that's not such a funny story. Kinda morbid. ...Well, no. If you saw it, you probably would've laughed. Also, there are a million and five dogs here.  Hahaha the other day, a 17 year old girl in the ward, Nicole, was wearing a shirt English. Misspelled English too. It had a picture of a bike and it said, "I love my bicyle, I love the bicyle, let me so freely so happy, do you have yourself?" Que en el mundo?! Also, everyday here there are men, usually in cars, who either wolf whistle at us, make kissy noises at us, or hiss at us. Literally everyday. In the CCM, Hermana E said she heard that the hissing means something along the lines of them wanting you for prostitution or something. Welp...ew. It's nothing though. You just don't look at them. And nothing's ever happened. It's a common thing here. Oh I met a really cute little 5 year old girl yesterday at a member family's home for lunch. Her name's Abish, like from the Book of Mormon! By the way, I haven't had church here yet. Church was cancelled yesterday because yesterday was some sort of Peruvian election. So, next week!

I want to punch Spanish in the face. I get so frustrated with it. All the time. My 3rd day here we ate at a member's house, and I was so jealous of their 2 year old daughter. She spoke so well! My companion tries to help me understand things the best she can. And I'm grateful for that.

Hahaha this is funny: so the ward has English classes on...Thursday nights I believe? And at this last one, I felt like the teacher (some man from Canada) was making things a little hard to understand, or things weren't really proper, so I chimed in in English and tried to help. Well, one of the members at the class said he thinks I sound like Princess Diana. I've heard this before. Not the Princess Diana thing, but that apparently I sound British. Uh...yeah...no way. I do not sound British. I asked Hermana R about that, and she said, "Well, maybe not British, but you just sound very proper." I've actually gotten that a lot. Not just here, but in life in general. We had a great lesson with a non member family (unfortunately they don't live in the area. They were just visiting a lady we teach). But I got to participate and the Spirit was totally there! My Spanish wasn't perfect, but I could tell they felt the Spirit. It really is the universal language. We were going to give them a BoM too, but we didn't have one on us at the moment. I still feel guilty about that because right before we left the house, I almost brought a BoM, but thought, "No, my companion always has some." Always hearken to spiritual promptings people! No matter how small!

Ah, I feel like I have so much more to share, but I didn't get to it this time. Also, I have to send you pictures next time. Sorry for doing this again. I just have no time. But I promise next time!

I love you all.
Hermana Hymas

 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Week 6

 

Oh, mama. Le amo mucho. So, I left for the field yesterday morning. Oh. my. gosh. I'm only on my second day in, and I am super overwhelmed and scared and yeah. I'm actually writing from a member's home right now. Okay, so soooo many emotions. I'll get to that in a minute though. Oh by the way, my P-days are Monday now. But I get to write you today since I didn't get to yesterday.
 
Proselyting on Saturday. Such a great experience. I had a Latina companion from Colombia named Hermana A. Again, knows no English. She was cool. And she let me teach! Yay! We had a good conversation on the bus to....dang it, I cannot remember the name of where we served that day. It started with a B... Anyway, she's 26, loves American names, has a list of like 20 names she's considering for her future children. American names. Haha I thought that was funny. Her top boy and girl names are Derek and Allison. Probably spelled Alison though, but still, shout out to Allison! She also loves music, so I asked if she knows any American music, and she said she only knows Avril Lavigne's Complicated and Sk8er Boy. She started singing Complicated because she was trying to tell me which ones she knew, and so I joined in, then other Hermana's heard us, joined in as well. Then out of nowhere, 2 Elders sitting behind me bust in, singing, "WHY'D YOU HAVE TO GO AND MAKE THINGS SO COMPLICATED!" Naturally, we were all surprised, so we stopped and turned to see which Elders were singing. They stopped because they were doing a duo. Then in English, with a funny Latino accent, one of the Latinos said "Sisters...what happened?!" It was funny. But yeah, it was fun to go out proselyting. We met with a couple less actives with a local grandma member and her 6 year old granddaughter. The 6 year old girl was cute, but NOISY! I swear, Satan didn't want anyone to hear our messages. We first contacted this really friendly police man who said he wants to come to our church but doesn't have time right now because of his work. Of course I didn't catch any of that because my Spanish is still bad and he mumbled, so I found out all of this after we left. I was pretty mad we didn't go back and get his information. I kept telling my group we should go back, but they insisted not to. Ugh, it made me mad. But oh well. Then we met with a lady who's active but her children are not. She also has some health problems, so we got to talk about enduring to the end and what that means. Then we met with a less active woman and talked about the importance of church. I got to share my testimony, a scripture, and a personal story. I asked my comp how I did afterwards, and she said very good! Although she's really nice, so... But I was struggling with my Spanish a bit that day, so when I started talking I was slow and struggling to find a word or two. Then the lady was like, "You can speak in English if you want." I was like, what the... Yeah, she knows some English. I only said like 1 or 2 words in English, then I just spewed out Spanish. My comp said she was shocked. And proud. She said my Spanish was fast and perfect. I still have a hard time believing that, but whatevs. I also didn't understand much of what was being spoken after I reminded my comp to extend a commitment, so when we left in another mototaxi (rode 2 that day. still scary.) I asked my comp if the lady had a way to get to church the next day (she committed to coming). She said no, but she said she's sure she'll come because I did such a good job with inviting the Spirit. I was like, well I hope so, but I don't know if it'll happen. She could just say she'll go, but not actually go, ya know? Anyway, I wonder how that turned out.
 
Okay, so feelings lately. I feel way inadequate here. I honestly don't know how I'm gonna do it. Sometimes I just want to cry. I don't understand much. I don't speak much. Everything's such an adjustment. Oh man. I met the Borg's yesterday. Presidente's cool. His wife is awesome! I love her already. Oh and you know that one girl's blog you look at sometimes? I met her too. Talked with her this morning actually. She's in my zone. Also, my CCM companion, Hermana R is in my district. She and her comp live right below us. My companion is Hermana N from Peru. Iquitos area, pero I don't remember exactly where. She's nice and patient with me. We taught a couple people last night and we're teaching a few tonight too. I nervous about that, since I have to teach some things. I just feel kinda awful right now. I don't know how I'm gonna do this. And I just really, really want to be able to teach and express myself and say whatever I want in Spanish! Dad was right, it's kinda a lonely time right now. It stinks. I just don't want these feelings for a long time, pero no se. It could happen. Oh, and I'm in a really nice part of the city right now. Some parts, not so nice, but for the most part, it's nice. Can't remember the name of it right now though...haha. And I don't have time to send pics today, so Monday I promise!
 
It was sad saying goodbye to everyone at the CCM. I keep thinking about my friends and how they're doing in their missions. Mainly in Iquitos and Cuzco. It was way fun talking and laughing with everyone the night before we all left though. Two of the Hermanas came into my room to say goodbye to me at 2am yesterday morning. I was way out of it, so that must have been funny. But yeah, I miss them and talking to them (especially in English) so much. I just miss my CCM life so much right now. I wonder if they're scared and struggling like me and Hermana R are. I'm sure they have the same feelings right now. I pray for them. I'm starting to do this thing where I pray for specific people, but also talk about why they're awesome and what impact they've had on my life. Just kinda thanking Heavenly Father for the gifts I've seen in these people. Yeah, I guess relationships are important to me. Very, actually. I realize how grateful I am for all those who have walked into my life. Friends and family. Especially grateful for such an amazing family. That's very flattering that you want to be more like me. Like, you don't even know. Thanks, Mom.
 
Oh guess what! Elder RUSSELL M. NELSON, Elder C. Scott Grow, and Elder Rasband and their wives came to the CCM to speak to us on Friday! I since we're such a small MTC, we all got to meet them! So I shook all their hands! Pretty cool! I'm also pretty sure Elder Nelson smiled at me and looked me in the eyes a few times during the meeting. I was only in the 3rd row. And we ran into Elder Rasband at the mission office yesterday too! Anyway, I was beaming during the whole meeting on Friday. It was crazy good and the Spirit was strong. I for some reason especially felt the Spirit with something Elder Rasband talked about. He talked about how they visited the Lima temple and ran into Presidente Borg and a missionary, Elder W who I met yesterday (he flew home yesterday too). Elder W was there to see a family he taught go through the temple together. I hear stories like this all the time, but for some reason, this one really hit me. I started tearing up, and I just kept thinking to myself, "This is why I am here." Oh! And Elder Russell M. Nelson is so cool and so funny! The funniest thing he said was, "I want you all to learn Spanish if you speak English, English if you speak Spanish, and I want you to learn the language of the Lord. If you can become trilingual in English, Spanish, and Lordish....that might've been sacrilegious, I don't know." Haha. Man, that was such a good day.
 
I have to go! But talk to you next week! And keep me in your prayers! Especially for my safety (almost got hit by a car today) and my health (lots of missionaries get sick from the food here). Also, just because I need some prayers. I need some comfort right now. Oh, I got a blessing from one of the Elders in my district before leaving the CCM! That was really nice. It was very much for me, too. So awesome how much Heavenly Father knows us personally.
 
Much love, ya'll!
Hermana Hymas
 
P.S. - Congrats to Dylan and to Sienna!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Week 5

¿Que pasa, calabaza? ¡Nada, nada, limonada! It means "What's up, pumpkin?" "Nothing, nothing, lemonade!" Kinda like a "What's up, buttercup?" Anyway, I love it. Haha yeah, I'm sure we'll just be taking a bus into Lima Central next week. Oh my goodness, I cannot believe it's only a week away. This is nuts. Oh gosh, I miss my cello! Haha I'm such a dork for saying that. I also miss doing the Messiah. That's cool that Brian and Grace are doing that again. Wait, M's friend that's applying to BYU, is she a non-member?
 
Today was my last time to go to the temple here in Lima. Kinda weird. Oh, and I met a couple at the temple in my session from PA! They're here doing a...service mission of some sort I believe? Brother and Sister F. They're from the Scranton stake near Bethlehem and Sister F was like, "Do you know the C family?" I said yeah and that my sister's actually good friends with L. C. Small world. Also, my translation thing stopped working during my session, so at least half of it was just in pure Spanish for me. But I understood almost everything! Also, remember when I said we have real investigators come to the CCM? Well...apparently that's not totally true. Yes, our teachers lied to us. So yesterday morning, our teacher told me and my companion to go the auditorium and meet with a "real" investigator and teach him. We didn't know that he wasn't real at the time, so I was a little bit nervous, but it went well. I still do most of the talking in our lessons. My companion said she knows she needs to speak up, and she admitted that sometimes she doesn't speak that much because she's been relying on my Spanish. But we had a really really good lesson with our investigator L last night too! Again, I did most of the talking, but it was way good...for my bad Spanish that is. We taught about faith in Christ, and at one point, he said he feels like he needs to read the whole BoM before baptism (he's getting baptized this Saturday). So then I was like, "Well, I have a personal story for you!" And then I told him about how when I was 15 years old, I gained the real desire to know for myself if all of this was true. I went to church all the time, but I never actually really had a true testimony. I told about how I prayed and asked for the truth, studied the BoM, and just pushed forth with faith. I said that I eventually received my answer, but I didn't finish the BoM by that point. The Spirit testified to me even though I didn't finish the BoM yet. That helped out L and made him feel better about it (even though he's not a real investigator). After our lesson, my teacher kept saying that our lesson was very, very good. That felt pretty great. Some people here, especially Hermana F, have said that they've seen my Spanish improve more and more.
 
Yep, Peru is progressively getting hotter and hotter, although we had a couple of days here that were cold all day. My mission's pretty cool! There are tons of people there. And it's cool to see some of the more European-looking buildings. On our drive there, we saw people walk out into the street and start selling stuff. Like, really lame stuff. Like, rats. We weren't sure if they were real or not, but they could've been. It would not surprise us at this point. I didn't get very good pictures though. For migration, we just had to go sign a couple forms and give a couple fingerprints. It's just passport and legal document stuff. It wasn't much, but for some reason it took a couple hours. I met up with some of the missionaries I knew here at the CCM, but are now in the field. I asked them all about it. They said it's really hard, but it gets better and better.
 
The Spirit is so cool. I don't know why exactly, but for some reason, I felt the Spirit during one of our lessons. It was completely in Spanish, like every lesson, and it was just about getting to know your investigators more and teaching people, not lessons. It wasn't like really spiritual or anything, but I just really felt the Spirit during it. I got so pumped to go serve. I'm thinking I felt the Spirit as a reminder that this is the true reason I'm here. This is what I need to do. And I love people and talking to people and getting to know people, so this is the right sort of thing for me. It was just kinda weird, but cool. My companion wasn't feeling very well one morning here, so the elders in my district gave her a priesthood blessing, and I've witnessed many priesthood blessings, but for some reason I really felt the Spirit during the one they gave her. I love it here.
 
I'm enjoying it here, but I am a little sad to leave so soon. I should stop, and write some other emails. Oh and I am so excited to go out proselyting again on Saturday! I wonder if I'll be paired with a Latina again. We'll see! It's weird to think that I'll be writing my next letter from el campo misional!
Yo se que Jesucristo es mi Salvador. El evangelio de Jesucristo es perfecto. Estoy muy feliz a ser aqui en Peru y por el opportunidad a apprendir mas y servir mas en mi mision. Estoy lista.
 
Hermana Hymas
 
P.S. - I have to remember to tell you the funniest story I heard from Hermana C next week!
 
Lima Central pics:



 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Week 4

Aw it's always nice to know that people are praying for me. I got a nice little email from Grandma and Grandpa and Sienna Hawkins and a nice little dearelder.com letter from Aunt Kelly on Sunday. I love it when people write me! I don't have too much time to write today because I have to leave right after this and go into the LIMA CENTRAL MISSION for migration work! So excited to go see it. I'll send pics next week. Some friends from other districts went on Tuesday and they came back and were like "Your mission's so cool!" So I'm excited to go see it. Unfortunately today is pretty cloudy, so that stinks, but yeah, should be fun! It's not always cloudy here like I thought it would be. It's usually cloudy and cold in the morning, but around 1pm, it warms up a lot. It actually gets pretty hot and sunny. It's usually pretty beautiful, at least where I am. Blue skies and sunshine. We're all getting darker (except for the Latinos obviously haha). I don't tan very easily, so I don't feel like I'm that much darker, but I probably am compared to when I first came here. I've got a nice watch tan-line going on. Oh, so when a bunch of other people went to migration on Tuesday, my companion had to go do it too for some reason, so I had no companion and had to stay with the elders in my district for a few hours until they all got back. The elders in my district are all so funny. Since I was the only girl with them, they decided to surround me as I walked (they only did this for like a minute, but it was funny), and held their ears like they were my secret service and had earpieces, and kept saying things like, "Okay we need someone on the front left! Front left! There could be a sniper!" There are also so so so so many hilarious things they do and say, I'll have to write them down and tell you some other time. Elder A probably makes me laugh the most.
 
Wow! Sounds like everyone's doing well! Good for Brian for almost being done with his Eagle! And congrats for Allison getting a new publisher! Good luck!
 
Things are actually getting better with my companion. I've come to learn that we are different people, but there are really great things about her and we help each other out. We were actually talking about this yesterday. The past few days have been hard for me. I'll get into that later. But my companion is like the best listener and the most supportive person ever. She's been down as well a few times, but she said she's grateful for me because she said I make her laugh every day. Oh how I love making people laugh here haha! And just making people laugh in general. It's way fun. I'm gonna miss the people here so much when we leave in a couple weeks. My comp, my Hermana friends, and I were all talking last night, and we just all get along so well and laugh and have fun so much! Hahaha okay, so this is a couple weeks old, but I thought it was funny: This is gonna sound a little sketchy, but I promise it's not. One time at lunch, we were talking about weird things we could do with our tongues (roll it, flip it over, 4 leaf clover, touch it to nose, etc.). I was the only one who could do all of them, so Hermana F goes, "Wow you have a pretty talented tongue." Then Hermana E just says, "Hehe, gift of tongues..."
 
So lately, I've been really bothered by the fact that I feel like I haven't been able to feel the Spirit like, once here. Or at least not that I can remember. I'm like, am I doing something wrong? It sounds silly, but it really bothered me, and I felt jealous of others who did feel the Spirit. I talked with a couple friends about it, and they feel the same way though. Hermana L's actually the best. She and I had a nice little chat and she's a really great, loving friend. So Sunday was pretty good though. We had testimony meeting, and I thought to myself maybe I'll feel better if I share my testimony, because sometimes that happens. So I did. Actually a couple times since our whole RS  was a testimony meeting too. I don't know if I really felt the Spirit, but what I got out of it was just feeling so grateful. So much. For everything. Everything I have, everything I've been given, the chance to serve a mission, being a Mormon, etc. So that was nice. And then we watched an MTC devotional by Elder Bednar and it was perfect for me. Honestly, every devo we've heard so far has been exactly what I need at that moment. He basically just talked about the Spirit and how it's not always this big thing. Sometimes the Spirit speaks to you and you don't even know it. He gave 3 life experiences about that. I know, perfect for how I was feeling, right? He said, keep the commandments, be a good boy/girl, and the Spirit will guide you.
 
Proselyting was so great! I went to Santa Fe in the Lima North Mission, and was split from my newbee companion. I went out with a female member and the local bishop. They talked a lot to the less actives we visited, so I ended up asking them if I could please share a message or a testimony or something. They said sure, so I got to share my testimony of the Church and how it makes me feel with a less active. That was pretty cool. But what I loved was the fact that I was able to speak to the member and bishop I was with the whole time! In Spanish too since they didn't know any English! That was way cool. On our way back to the CCM, Hermana F said this time she felt it was more like "Wow, look at how much Spanish I actually know!" I had to agree. That's exactly how I felt. Oh and have you seen pics of the houses in Peru that are built into the mountains? A lot are colorful. Yeah, well I got to go up into those on Saturday! One of the less actives lives up there.  Oh! I got to ride in 3 mototaxi's that day! I'm sending pics. It looks like I motor bike meets an American smart car. And I've told you about the streets here. It was friggin terrifying to ride in those little things. We were just a hair away from hitting everything on the road. You know that scene in the 3rd Harry Potter where he's on the night bus and they're weaving in and out of everything really fast and just barely missing everything on the road. That's exactly what it was like. What an experience though!
 
Hermana Hymas





 
Pics: The view from up the mountain; Me and the member, Hermana D, I was with;  Houses up the mountain; The family's youngest daughter (if you zoom in on the mug she's holding, it should be a Spanish version of a mug I think we have at home!); Up the mountain we go!; More houses;

 
 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Week 3

Ah! Emails make me so so so happy! Yeah, I actually got your package on Friday! So it only took about a week to get here. It's not against the rules, you just have to be careful when sending stuff here. I worry about it too. Today I bought Brian, David, and Dad something. I don't know if I should say what they are. But they're really really popular among all the elders here. I'm wondering if I should try to send them, or if I should hang on to them until I come home. I've heard other missionaries say they'd rather hang onto things rather than send them. Yay for Sienna!!!! That's awesome! As for Jeannie and Lindsay's letters, uh, yeah I guess you can still send them to me. I haven't had time to read them yet though. I can probably file them away or something though. Best of luck to Hailey as she waits for her visa! Hey! The Vernon's are in the Houston Mission! Is she there speaking English? Hey, Pittsburgh, huh? That sounds fun! What did you all do there?
 
I'm loving the CCM. Yeah, I think part of that is that it's more intimate. You feel like you know everyone. There's only ever like 170-180 missionaries maximum here at one time. It's all very fun. I love the different experiences we get here too, just being in Peru. Like going out on the streets to teach on Saturdays, or just getting to speak with natives everyday. Spanish is rough. My biggest problem is with conjugations. It's hard to get it down, but I'm still progressing. We have a second investigator now. Her name's Z. She's my morning teacher. Things have been going well with her so far. She committed to coming to church with us, and we teach her on Thursday next, so we'll have to follow up with that. But, she and her boyfriend live together and have a son, so we're gonna have to teach her about the law of chastity next. We'll see how that goes. Yay. There's actually a song that a lot of the missionaries sing around here that gets stuck in your head. You won't know the tune until I can talk to you, but it just goes, "Castidad, castidad, castidad!!  We taught our district a lesson on the attributes of Christ in English on Sunday. There's a new batch of Latinos and Americans here, but I don't really know them. A bunch of Americans and all of the Latinos are leaving on Saturday, which is earlier than they were supposed to leave, so when we go out to teach on saturday, my group will be the most "experienced" missionaries. That's scary. I might be leading a newbee missionary. This might sound silly, but pray for my safety. There are car/bus crashes everyday here. And shady people. And we hear sirens quite a bit a outside the CCM. And we hear stupid birds. Doves or whatever they are. They sound like owls. They hoot all the time. All friggin day. It' so annoying.
 
Hmm...Christmas. Oh gosh I don't know! If anything, I wouldn't mind a skirt or cardigan or something. Something to add a little more variety. Yeah but I mean, whatever you want to send is fine by me! Not much has happened this week other than studying as always, and we got a new District Leader. Elder L. I am coming to love my district more and more. I have a lot of really hilarious elders in my district.


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Week 2

¿Que en el mundo? What in the world? That's my favorite phrase in Spanish so far. My friends and I say it all the time. I'm sure it doesn't translate directly, but we hear it all the time around the CCM. Even from the latinos. Speaking of the latinos, they left this morning for the field. Sad...but we're all excited for them. We'll get a new batch of latinos and Americans early Thursday morning. I LOVE the latinos!!! They are honestly the sweetest people you will ever meet! And they are so patient with all our horrible Spanish. I'll miss my latina friends. They were so funny. One of them was hilarious. She loved my tiny hands haha. And she would always tell me to repeat after her, and in Spanish she'd say things like, "I want my boyfriend back" or "I want my pig". Yo quiero mi chanco. And after I say it, she and all the other latinas crack up. So we decided to teach some of them some English. Hearing that one Hermana try to say "curling iron" is one of the funniest things I've ever witnessed. She'll break it up, but it's not all that easy for her to say, so she'll twist her face up and make the funniest faces as she trys to make the different sounds. Another Peruvian Hermana says "Hasta la vista, baby" all the time. And then she pretends to shoot you.
 
Okay, so Saturday. We drove like an hour to areas in the Lima North Mission. Most of us got paired up with a latino(a) companion and a member of the church there. I was paired with Hermana B from Cusco. She speaks no English. I was able to communicate with her a bit though with the little Spanish I know. It was a cool experience, but I wish I got to speak more. The member we were with spoke a ton! Like all. the. time. Hermana B didn't even speak very much. On the way home I was talking with a couple of my friends, Hermana L and Hermana E, both from Utah. Both are at the same place in Spanish as I am, and they were paired up as companions, with a latina member. But, they said it went really well! They got to teach 4 people and had such a great experience! I was like what?! That's so awesome for them, but what?! I heard of other stories like that, so I was pretty disappointed I didn't get to speak like, at all. Oh well, we do this every 2 weeks, so I've got a couple more chances. Man oh man, I wish I was allowed to take pictures of the area I was in. I feel so spoiled in the USA. These were some really poor people. They really don't have much at all. Also, there was dust everywhere. Well, dirt I guess. It felt like my lungs filled with it. Since then, I've had a pretty bad cough. And today I got a cold. Oh listerine and cough drops, please help me.
 
I know this is like a week late, but yeah! That's so exciting about my BYU acceptance! I told my friends here, and they're all excited for me, especially the ones that live in Utah. ...Let's be real, that's just about all of them. We decided after the mission, we'll have to meet up and have a siesta fiesta (sleepover). It's crazy, we've been here for 2 weeks, but I feel so close to everyone here. Hermana F and I get along really well. We basically just laugh all the time. More like I've known them for 2 years or something. A lot of people are really cool, but there are some people here where I'm like, are you serious? Yeah, my companion's American. She's from Utah. We're very different teachers. We'll prepare lessons for our investigator, L, and we just have a different method of going about it. That's fine though. It all works out. But we're also just different as we teach. Our teacher, who is also our fake investigator L, told her not to be afraid to speak up, and he said I've been getting better and better with my Spanish. There have been a couple times where he'll give me a thumbs up after I say something or bear a testimony in our lessons. He did that yesterday after I told a personal story and bore my testimony. My companion afterwards told me I did really well and that it was probably the best part of our lesson. It's interesting, I started feeling more comfortable with Spanish the day after my last letter. I'm starting to retain more words as well. Thank you for your prayers. I'm still struggling quite a bit, but I'm also progressing. I'm really trying not to compare myself to others, but rather compare myself to myself. I'm getting better day by day, poco a poco. I find I'm getting better at expressing myself with the little Spanish I know. My English gets weird and I misspell things sometimes. I've heard the same from other missionaries. That's a good sign, I guess.
 
Our teachers have been really hard on us. We have like a million assignments a night, along with memorizing like 3 things a day too. Everyone in all the other districts are shocked. Nobody else gets pushed nearly as much as we do. It stinks because it's stressful, but we're also grateful for it, because it's pushing us with our Spanish. Our teachers know we can't always accomplish everything they assign with the little time we're given, but like I said, it pushes us with our Spanish. Yesterday I memorized Moroni 10:4-5 in Spanish! I was so happy!
 
I so wish I was allowed to take pictures of the food here for you guys. We have very strict rules of when and where we can take pictures though. But I do have pictures! I'll have to send them asap! I don't have a cord to do that right now though. I've been meaning to check with other missionaries to see if any of theirs will fit my camera. We basically eat cereal (sometimes in yogurt) for breakfast, and white rice, meat, and potatoes for lunch and dinner. Sometimes they switch it up, but we always have rice.  I'm getting sick of all the rice. I've started to request no rice. Oh and Mom, I tried accepting the blog invite thing, but it wouldn't let me right now. I don't know if there's another way around it...? I saw your Murder Mystery pics! Fun! Funny that dad was the murderer. Speaking of which, my district leader reminds me of a young uh...I don't know his name. The evil leader guy in The Mentalist. He's a Red John suspect. Or at least when he still was in the last episode I saw. Again, don't tell me anything about what's happening. But yeah. Coincidence? ...I think not...haha
 
Have a great week! Love you!
 
Hermana Hymas








Tuesday, October 15, 2013

First Week at the CCM!

Oh my gosh. So much to tell you, but unfortunately today, so little time. So I might only get like 20-30 mins... lame! Oh my goodness...I have never been so jealous of latinos in my life. I'll get to that later. Oh I'm also typing a little slower because their keyboards here are a little weird. So the plane ride. It was great! In Atlanta there were about 6 of us there, but then BAM! 30 missionaries from Utah! Haha. And only like 7 of us were Hermanas. So we get on the plane, I'm sitting next to a man from Ohio who does business in Lima and there are 2 elders behind me. Elder W and Elder H. Both cool, funny guys. So we 3 are talking a bit about church and missionary stuff, and then the guy sitting next to me, J, was like "Are you guys missionaries?" And I was like "Yeah, do you know about mormon missionaries?" So then we just started talking a little, and out of the corner of my eye I see W and H silently freaking out behind me. Elder H was joking around with me earlier kicking my seat and stuff, so I feel something hitting my arm as I'm talking to J, and then I look, and Elder H's pushing me a Book of Mormon. I thought that was a little funny. There's a time and a place to give out a BoM, so I went into it just letting things happen and not trying to push the book on him. But we had a really great conversation! We talked a lot about just different stuff, I showed him one of my favorite scriptures that ties in really nicely to what we were talking about (Ether 12:4), and I explaned the BoM and what we believe it to be and I drew that picture of the two circles, the bible and the BoM, and how when you add the BoM, it makes a straight line. You know? It was funny, I could see Elder W looking over my shoulder and watching me and listening to our conversation. So the whole conversation flowed really nicely and he accepted the book! Then Elder W went and told all the missionaries on tha plane and said I was famous for placing a BoM already. Too bad that was in English haha. So yeah. I've been here only a week, but it feels like it's been at least a month. Soooo much happening each day! I've made some really great friends here! Those two Elders are 2 of them, but there are a few Hermanas that I really enjoy talking with and hanging out with. Stinks none of them are in my mission, or in my district. We see each other at meals and anytime we can hang out together. So that's fun. My companion and I share our room with 2 other hermanas that have been here for 3 weeks. They're okay.
 
Oh, so this is kinda funny. Yesterday during a volleyball game, I jokingly called Elder W Satan, so he keeps bugging me about that. Apparently he was talking about it a little to his district, and Hermana E, one of my friends, was trying to say that she thinks I'm really funny in Spanish, but instead of saying comica (sp?), she said comeda (sp?). Anyway, she called me food. Oh and the food is...interesting. Sometimes it's way good, sometimes, well...yeah. Haha there was this one time they gave us this apple filling filled churro thing with our meal and it was AMAZING!!!! It was like Christmas to us Americans.
 
AHHH! There's so much I want to say! So little time! I might not get to Brian and Jeannie's emails this week :( So you'll have to let them know. But I still love them! Yeah, the weather's been pretty much the same. Sometimes we have blue skies, but that might just be for an afternoon. And it ranges. Sometimes it's pretty hot (like today), and sometimes it's pretty cool. Oh the Spanish.... I don't even know where to start. Yes, church is in Spanish, but only some meetings. Sometimes the latinos and the North Americans (what they call us here) split up. The only stressful thing though is that we have to prepare a short talk every week because you never know if they'll call you up from the pulpit to speak. Scary. Sunday was awesome! Partly because we didn't have classes and I got to be with my friends. We also watched an awesome devotional Elder Bednar gave on Christmas in 2011...I think...not sure... But yeah, it. was. so. incredibly. good. LOVED IT! Spanish has been hard though. Prayers for my learning the language would be appreciated. Especially for my retention rate. I swear I have like a 1 minute retention rate. We taught our first investigator, L, yesterday. Como se dice 'That was rough' en EspaƱol? Because that was rough. Ah well. A phrase we hear a lot here is 'Poco a poco'. Little by little. Which is fine. I get frustrated with Spanish, but I've already learned so much. I'm currently working on memorizing the first vision. But I can say simple phrases in Spanish, and I can pray in Spanish! We learned that on the second day. It's always so satisfying when I can hold a small conversation with a latina. They are so patient with us haha. Another phrase used a lot here, like all the time, is "Que es esto?" What is this? Again, we don't always know what we're eating. Oh hey! I ate that weird looking fruit we saw online! The one that looks like an alien! You kinda drink it/slurp it. Anyway it was good. Sort of tasted like orange jello.
 
I'm glad I'm here in Peru. It's interesting being here instead of the Provo MTC. 'MTC' here is 'CCM', by the way. I went to the temple today! We go every P-day I think. It's in the Lima East Mission, so I won't be able to go when I'm in the field. It was all in Spanish! There were parts where we were given headphones that translated for us though. It was such a cool experience. It's cool to see how the church is the same everywhere. We take a bus to and from the temple though and wow. Okay, so you are packed and I mean PACKED into those things like sardines. You feel like you are violating mission rules because you literally could not get any closer to everyone around you. Such a small bus, sooooo many people. Then we went into Lima to explore and shop and stuff. That was kinda cool. First of all, it was HOT. And Lima's basically just like a bigger, grungier NYC. Tons of people, tons of honking taxis, the only thing is, you have to be careful crossing the street because cars and buses don't stop for you. You don't have the right of way, the car does. So you could easily get hit.
Want to know what else is cool about being here? Real investigators from Lima will sometimes come to the CCM to get taught by us. Cool and scary. Something else that's cool and scary: this Saturday, I will be going out on the streets of Lima to teach. Yeah. We'll see how that goes. I'll tell you all out it next week, but I have to go now!
 
I love you all! Can't wait to talk to you next week!
 
Hermana Hymas



The Peru CCM

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Safe and sound

Hey!!!! I'm here and I'm safe! Things have gone well, and I've made some friends already. Also, I PLACED A BOOK OF MORMON WITHIN THE FIRST HOUR/HOUR AND A HALF INTO MY FLIGHT TO LIMA!!!! It was great! It was kinda funny actually, I'll tell you all about it when I write you on P-day (not exactly sure when that is yet). Anyway, hope you are well!
I love and miss you guys!
 
- Hermana Hymas (pronounced ee-mas here)