Monday, August 2, 2010

M:47/P:36: New Companion From Mexico

Hola Familia

Glad to hear that Dad and Braden made it to San Diego without any problems. I didn´t expect anything bad to happen, but even so it´s good to hear it´s all fine.
As for housing, Dad, don´t feel too bad. It could be worse. You could be living in houses with tin roofs. They aren´t that bad, but they don´t keep out all the critters and the like. This won´t be the first time that we´ve been financially stretched, so, I´m confident we´ll come out on top without many scratches.

As for the indians, I´ve heard that the normal Panamanians consider to the indians´ hygiene to be generally . . . low. I haven´t gotten to know any of them yet, so I can´t say, but it honestly wouldn´t surprise me with all the rumors.

As for cooking, I had no idea how it was going to turn out. The members all loved it and now all of them are clamoring for recipes and having me come over and cook for them sometime. I´m thinking about just cooking at a church activity to make it simpler. I don´t know if it´s the same kelaguen you make at home, but I liked what I made. I´ll make sure to cook some for you and we can compare.

As for the family splitting up, I know it´s hard for you. But it´s not for too long so we shouldn´t need to sweat it out too much. We´ve been doing this for years now. Liesey looks to be a striking similar little person with me, huh?

Working with international projects, huh? Now I get to wow the Panamanians even more with what my dad does. By the way, they still don´t think you´re my dad. Hope the new office has a nice view and that the guy who has to frisk you is gentle. That sounds like a pretty high level responsibility.

And Mom, don´t worry so much about not writing me last week. I enjoy hearing from you but I understand you´ve got some hefty stuff on your plate for the moment. Even if you didn´t write me, I know that not a day goes by that you don´t think about your 6´2" baby.

As for the work, the first week of another transfer is down and things are looking pretty up. My new companion is Elder Andres Chuc from Yucatan, Mexico. He´s got almost the exact same amount of time in the mission because he, like Elder Fernandez, got here the same day I did. He´s a pretty likable companion and we´ve gotten along very well for the first week. We´ll see if this keeps up.

We´re running low on baptismal candidates and it looks like we might not be able to find many for August. We´re waiting on a lot of extended family of recent baptisms to get married. The majority of the people we teach are very positive up to now. I´ll make sure to keep you updated on that. We´re also making a lot of effort to involve the members to try and solve the inactivity problem. That combined with trying to gain the bishopric´s trust is becoming a little tough. But I´ll get used to it, I imagine.

As for funny stories, today I got my hair cut. And the plastic part definitely fell off right before he started cutting. And now I´ve got a military haircut. I´ll try to think of funny experiences over the next week. A lot of this week has just been trying to introduce my companion to everyone.

Well, I hope everyone is doing well and moving forward. This transfer is likely going to be pretty tough, but I think if I´m going to finally break my year mark, it´s going to have to be a make or break period to see how the rest of my mission is going to end.

Your Elder in Panamá,
Elder Austin Ascura

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