Well this is my short little note. I´ll tell you my stories of the week
soon. We had a baptism yesterday! I´m in Torrejón and my bags are packed
an in the mission home. I´ll see my new mission president, President
Pack, for the first and last time. Thanks to everyone who wrote me! I
love you all so much! I miss you all so much as well, but I´ll see you
Wow. Weird. My last full email. This email is
done on a computer, unlike every other missionary here. I took a fine
picture of a room full of missionaries just glued to their iPads and no
one talking. I feel weirder and weirder as time goes on. Today didn´t
help either. I have figured that transfers--especially this one--are
easier when you do it like a bandaid. Don´t watch and just do it really
fast and it will only hurt afterwards and not so much. Actually, writing
this email kind of hurts so it might not be so long. And Firefox has
failed on me 3 times already so it´s kind of hard.
We had a
barbeque/water fight/farewell party in the chapel and a bunch of
missionaries from everywhere came. We grilled some meat and hoses and
buckets and balloons quickly turned it into World War Water so I sought
refuge in the chapel and ate no more meat due to the watery manslaughter
on the way to the grill. I´m still drying actually. Although they did
drag the weaker and smaller missionaries outside to be executed by
bucket or hose.
For the first time in my mission, upon
leaving a lesson our investigator said, "May the force be with you."
She´s a bit interesting but it made my morning.
this week I officially wrote to President Pack, the new mission
president. Although his family and him don´t arrive until Wednesday. But
the letters this week officially go to him. President and Sister
Jackson wrote their farewell on the bulletin.
I ate probably my last Spanish paella on Sunday. It was with Spaniards,
in Spain, done the original style (Valenciano), made by a man from
Valencia. So it´s a good way to have a last one. Saying goodbye is
awful. Ahhh! This email is making me think too much about going home.
Well in summary, I have a normal week set up with some goodbyes and
packing at the end. It´s weird planning for next p-day. I´ll probably
write a little something just for fun next p-day. I feel sad so I´m
going to stop writing. I love you all and miss you loads!
Well on random news I found out that the last name Arguello
comes from Navarra, northeastern Spain, and that the last name
Montealegre comes from Jerez de la Frontera, the southwest of Spain. Now
that we have Family search on our iPad, I´ve realized that most of our
ancestors are from Jerez and Navarra. Both in the other Spain missions.
But oh well. Maybe I still have relatives in Madrid.
story: The bishop was telling the youth to not use their phones for
scriptures and to bring real scriptures to church like the missionaries
do but then a kid from the primary said, "But the missionaries use their
iPads." He was shocked and now has no more excuses to make them bring
Random note: We met a man
named Melqui (Melki) and he told us how it was spelled which is exactly
the same as the beginning of Melchizedek in Spanish (Melquisedec) and we
commented on that and he said that that´s what his father based his
name on. Although he had no idea who he was. He just knew that he was a
guy from the bible. First guy named Melchizedek that I´ve met in my
life. Sounds like a very Mormon thing to do. I also found out that the
singer of The Killers named his son Ammon. Hooray for Mormons.
don´t remember if I´ve mentioned it, but I still find it hilarious
every Sunday to hear the high priests joke about how their name (los
sumos) for latinos sounds like juice (zumo) if you´re latino and sounds
like Sumo wrestlers. Their like, "Orange juices over here and the lemon
juices over their," or "But I´m not Japanese or fat,"or whatever beloved
old people jokes you wish to insert. It´s really cheesy and old but I
love it every Sunday.
Well today was a fun day.
I came back to Barrio 5 with Elder Cluff who was in the dream team
district there. It´s so weird to be here again. We´re writing in the
Apple store by Plaza del Sol currently.
to go to our ward mission leader´s house on Sunday for lunch. I love
that place. It´s so huge and their kids are so much fun. They have 5 and
one on the way and so it felt like a family reunion with all the young
kids around. A note for mom: For the first time in my mission, I found a
house with a pastry cutter (the thing for biscuits). They have one! But
they have a big lawn and a huge garden plot and a pool and just about
everything. They live in a pretty nice neighborhood. The ex-president of
Spain and the mayor of Madrid live their as well. Also, we found out
that Boadilla del Monte is pretty well off as well. Ike Casillas, the
goalie for Real Madrid, lives there.
said before, it still doesn't feel like the end is arriving. I´m saying
it and everyone else is saying it but my mind just still hasn't accepted
it. Madness. It´s weirding me out. I don't really have many news for
the week. I miss you all! Love you loads!
The day has come. The yogurt I bought today lasts longer than I do
here in Spain. It expires right after I leave. Although only one flavor.
Once the strawberry greek yogurt lasts longer than I do, then that will
be sad. Good, old, faithful strawberry yogurt.
of weird feelings, last week after writing, I felt really weird. Just a
bunch of stuff doesn´t seem real. Ending the mission, the wedding,
Natalie wrote me and now I know she exists, Anna going to Orem High, my
friends getting married, Elder Anderson who is home and the leader of us
nerds has left behind nerdiness, just about everyone who has written me
wrote me, and just a bunch of weird stuff. I still don´t feel like the
end is actually here. Everyone´s saying it and I understand it´s coming,
but I don´t really feel like it is coming or that it´s real. I guess
it´s just some divine intervention with some anesthesia to soften the
blow. But ya, still doesn´t feel real.
the iPads came. Finally. And despite hopeful information I received
recently, I did not get an iPad. But my companion did so we get to
share. Well it comes in a case that with probably only be broken by the
second coming and by that time we probably won´t need it anymore so I
understand why the church bought the cases. Also probably because
missionaries drop things a lot. It´s pretty dope. Although we don´t have
the Areabook/Planner or Facebook so it hasn´t reached it´s full
potential and glory. We do get to use Duolingo for language study and
obviously the Gospel Library App. One weird thing is that we have no
Wifi in our apartment so we have to be at the church to use it. And they
are 32GB iPads and I have no idea why. We downloaded all the Liahonas
that have existed (That´s exciting for missionaries) and all the audio
for the hymns and all the manuals and everything and we still have a
bunch of space. We also have Siri blocked. The church has put a
restriction program that sets off an alarm basically if we do something
we shouldn´t. We actually did set it off but only because when you first
set up the iPad it has restricted apps. We are pretty restricted and
it´s not too useful yet, but it should be better in the future.
a random note, we met two American girls in the subway which was odd
because our part of the subway has nothing. Turns out they were heading
to the mall and one of them was from Indianapolis! So we talked about
whatever I remembered from there. Fun little blast of America.
had an investigator call us and told us about things happening like
some weird incident with coffee and she was going to visit "our
competition" (who we assume is some Catholic friend or priest since she
is Catholic.) but there was tons of rain that day and she didn´t want to
leave her house. She asked us, "Are you praying for me that I get
baptized?" and we were basically just like "Yeah." That´s all she called
for. To find that out. Fun little experience.
yeah, the weather is really nice here for now. It rained a few times
and has been in what would be the 60´s. I´ve slept like a baby with the
window open to let in the glorious, rainy breeze. Supposedly it´ll heat
up soon but I am thoroughly enjoying the cool break.
Anyways, I gotta go! I love you all and miss you loads!
Mom: Thanks for organizing everything and helping me not worry! I love you mom!
a random note, I was watching a DVD we have called Finding Happiness
and they have clips from each country depending on the language and I
found two families from Villalba on there!
I´ll explain geography when I´m home. I have a nice map I got here that I
can use to explain everything. It´ll be so much easier to explain
everything in person.
Ah! Anna Low is going to Orem
High and is 5´10"?!?!? What on earth? Time has flown by. I remember her
as a baby in sacrament meetings in Indiana. Weird. I´m excited to see
the Low´s. What´s their address and what buildings are they by that I´d
Ya, I´ve adopted a lot of phrases and the
word "fetch" and many quotes to use in normal conversation. Natalie
wrote me this week and I was about to try quoting some stuff but I
figured it would be weird to type and not in person. Although it might
still be weird. Oh well. I´ve probably changed my way of speaking a lot
and will have to remove a lot of Spanglish.
went to a mosque today. We were being led around by this really sweet
Muslim woman but then another one came by and kind of yelled at her and
us and said we needed to make an appointment over email to get a tour.
So we had to bail but we got to see a bit of it and got a bit of
adrenaline rush. I was so afraid of going in dressed as a christian
missionary but President Jackson said it was OK.
I am so excited for a new tie and a wedding I can actually fully attend!
I have no more time but I love you all and miss you loads!
Well we had a awesome conversation with a Spanish investigator
about Spanish history. She told us about the flag, what it all means,
where the royalty comes from (the Bourbons) and stuff like that. I
finally found out why Spain is called Spain! It comes from the Iberian
word Ispaja (Ee-SPA-ha) which is rabbit and there are a ton of rabbits
around here. The Romans turned that into "Hispania" which turned to
"España" which we made into "Spain." We also learned about culture and
jazz like that. And she said it makes sense that our Spanish ancestors
left from Cádiz because that´s where most people left from.
my it is so dang hot. I remember this now. There was about to be a riot
in church because we all met together for the 5th-Sunday class and it
was crowded and really hot and they went over time and people were
flipping biscuits. I was on the point of bursting into flames in my
suit. Thankfully I get to bail midway through summer. As much as I will
miss the mission, I will not miss hot summer days in the streets all
day. We had more lessons fail than usual. It sucks but oh well.
the subject of little children saying stuff, a little kid told us that
his family was in heaven. His grandma and his uncles and aunts and his
brothers. I was so shocked and sad until his parents clarified that they
had simply gone on a plane back to Bolivia but he didn´t really
understand. Sky and heaven are the same word, "Cielo" (Thee-EH-lo. Yes,
like that Danny).
Also, this woman who loves
making things passed me plans to make things like green houses and gardens on a
fence and wind turbines from scratch. I´m sure you guys will love to
see them. Although I´ll have to translate.
I´m excited for June but it´s also so weird to be in June. And we just
found a Filipino man named June. Anyways, I love you all and miss you
I figured the trunky comments would arrive. I was bracing myself for
today. The last transfer is here. It feels so weird. I also feel so old.
I talk about missionaries who have all gone home and events in the
mission from before most of the people were here. All these new little
kids are coming in and it just makes me feel like an old fart talking to
them. And all the members and investigators are reminding me of how
much time I have left. Also my agenda now doubles as a nice countdown of
how much time is left. Not to sound trunky, but I´m excited for the
next changes because I finally know what is going to happen to me and I
can pack in advance!
I´m staying in my area with my companion.
a random note, we found 10€ ties on sale for 1€ so we all bought tons. I
bought six and 2 of them came with matching cufflinks and only cost 50
Well we teach a piano class here. I
don´t know if I mentioned that. But while waiting for that I decided to
try and strike up a conversation and asked my companion what his
favorite piece of music is that he plays. He said it was Rachmaninoff´s
2nd Piano Concierto, 1st Movement and then he proceeded to play it. Oh
goodness that is a difficult and epic piece of music. Look it up.
had a random happy moment to myself. We contacted a woman in the street
and she gave us her number and while she was saying it all the daughter
who was like 5 finished the last numbers by saying "178" but the mom
"corrected" her quickly and gave us "179" as the last three digits.
Turns out that the number ending in 179 didn´t even exist but I had
written down the little girls response so I called that. The woman´s
sister answered and confirmed that it was her real number so now we´re
trying to get in contact with her. It was a nice contrast of deceitful
adults and pure, honest children. It makes me laugh a bit.
iPads are officially coming on June 10! Although it doesn´t matter to
me because I probably won´t get one. Although it´s still pretty cool to
be here when all this is changing and starting. I´ll at least get to
share my companion´s iPad and bother him. Also, as a side note for mom:
Whenever I see young kids in the ward on their phone I do what you
always did to my iPod and just attack the screen with all my fingers to
see if they die in their game. It does indeed work.
the Villalba trip was awesome. I thought it was going to be me, Elder
Weeks, and Elder Anderson but it turns out that they invited all the
Elders from the past year and a half that are still here. I´ll send
pictures once I bring my cable. It was so weird to see all the Elders
together (there were like 20 of us) and a bunch of the members there who
I haven´t seen in almost a year. To make it all even weirder, it was
all in a bright, beautiful field and we had lunch underneath a giant
picturesque tree and there were purple flowers everywhere. It was like a
dream. It was kind of how I imagine seeing people in the spirit world
or celestial kingdom. Seeing all of your old friends and family in a
bright, beautiful field and greeting them and everyone is smiling and
playing games and laughing and whatnot. Pretty trippy. It was really
nice to see everyone again. A few of those people are also going home
tomorrow so that was nice too. It was also a pretty sad farewell for the
Elders going home. It might also be my last time seeing them. Man,
everything is so weird realizing it´s probably or for sure the last time
of doing something. Ever since transfers, I´ve been hit with a burning
fire to work and also a storm of trunkiness. It´s an interesting
contrast and there are so many other contrasting emotions. It´ll be a
fun transfer. I am excited!