Oh my heck, there is something about people from Mali and grape picking. That cool guy, Aguibou, from Mali? He left to go pick grapes is Zamora like I said next week. We found a new guy from Mali named Yakuba. Guess what. He´s going to the northeast to pick grapes for a month too. And we met another dude from Mali. Who knows. He may have left already to pick grapes. It´s good an all that they got jobs, but for mission lessons... not so great. But don´t get me wrong, everyone I´ve met from Mali is great. They´re some of the nicest people here. Really I should be blaming grapes and all the dang drunks. Legal drinking age is 14 and buying age is 18. For alcohol, not grapes. Maybe I should blame the grapes less than the drunks, but the Drunks of Wrath for a email title doesn´t flow off the tongue and it wasn´t a book by Ernest Hemingway. I might be wrong on the author´s name but lots of people won´t know or care. Anyways...
From Mali we travel to Nigeria. We were talking with the elders quorom president who is from Nigeria. It was the end of the night, but he wanted to give us some food so he put some pepper soup in tupperware. First off, pepper soup is essentially water and parts of super hot peppers. This one had goat meat. I was interested. We opened it at home and found it was goat stomach. Yum. I was beyond curious and hungry, so I tried it. Imagine the feeling of eating broccoli, but it´s made of eternally chewy something that has a slight taste of meat. That´s stomach. It looks great too. I should have taken a picture. It was ok, just a little weird and time consuming. Apparently the technique is put small bites in that you can swallow because there is no way to chew it.
I did intercambios* again, but this time I moved. I went up to an area called Cuatro Caminos. Dang I forgot how ghetto of a neighborhood we live in. It´s nice up there especially compared to here. But I love this place too. Not much happened. We were both greenies up there and he didn´t know where much was so we got lost. I was glad to be home and realize how great my comps are.
Random news! It´s getting colder now and I love it! My comp from Arizona... not so much. I can still live with just a long sleeve shirt. Everyone else is rocking the cardigan or rocking the sweater. Maybe someday. Clothing can be dang expensive here, just like home. Some places are the kind that sell 40€ white tees and some are the places that sell fine looking shoes for 3€. I´m expanding my food skills. It´s hard because the things have to work in the short amount of time.
Transfers! We lost 3 hermanas from our original 6 and gained 1. None of the 4 elders left. Cuenca--they are far south-east but used to be in our district--shrunk again so now they´re back with us! My comp gets to enjoy his last transfer being a trainer and a zone leader. The city got 2 new zones, hence the new leader. Our zones were way beyond normal sized. We were like 56? And I believe the size range is supposed to be around 24 to 36. No title for me yet, but I have a transfer in the field under my belt. Half greenie!
On all the investigators. Two are now picking grapes elsewhere, one still needs to quit smoking again, one still needs to get married but his papers will be done in January, one now has to work overtime for Starbucks (Coffee of Wrath), one´s progressing nicely to his baptism, one has a huge load of school work and wants to be absolutely sure about the church, two others are also fuzzy, one family we can only see once a week and they just started, and the rest are pretty normal. Despite the many circumstances, many seem to be on the right path. I´m very excited and hopeful. I have a bad memory. There are just so many names and ethnicities and situations to remember. Ideally this would be the bigger section of the email, but I can´t remember our lessons in detail and I´m still trying to understand some people still. We should have some sweet progress on lots of people soon. Like we´re teaching a part member family. The parents are great and seem like long time converts, but they haven´t even had a year yet so we get to do temple prep sort of. The Restoration video hit a guy pretty hard. Although he´s the Starbucks guy and it seemed like he was breaking up with us. He even said, "I hope we can still be friends." But he´s not leaving us. Just doing more work. Agh, this is frustrating. My mind knows there are so many lessons and whatnot to talk about but they´re not there. Oh well, hopefully when I´m more experienced I´ll remember more.
I understand about the state of the numbers in the Missionary Impossible card game. My planner after its short duty looks like the 6 week card. It´s bent and broken and dirty and who knows what. My new planner is pristine and ready to rumble. I got pictures to send! I´ll put them in another email. Pardon my incorrect signature last email. I was writing other short emails before to people who gave me nicknames.
Love you all loads!