Monday, January 3, 2011

M:68/P57: Happy New Year

Hola Familia,

Well, this week didn´t get very much done, either.  People are still trying to squeeze in all the last minute partying here.
 
The New Years celebration was, as I expected, very food-filled.  I got fed another eight or nine times in excess.  I actually got sick; my companion, too.  One of the sisters microwaved the pork she gave us.  Let me tell you, do not microwave pork to cook it the first time.  It makes guests feel very bad in two days.  While it tasted very good, the feeling I had days later reminded me of when people poisoned me with laxatives.  I couldn´t help but laugh upon remembering that.
 
Outside of that, we didn´t get much else done.  We visited a handful of members in the week and have a baptism this Saturday.  I´m hoping all goes well.  I will also note that trying to sleep in this country on New Years Eve is an excercise in complete futility.  All night, music is blasting everywhere with the sporadic snaps and booms of fireworks.  And then midnight rolls around and you might as well just go outside to enjoy the show.  I didn´t even bother going to sleep like my companion did.  The fireworks were nice.  It was a pity that Mom had to work.
 
Man, I can´t think of anything else to tell you all about.  I remember arguing with a kid trying to convince him to buy a PS2 instead of a PS3.  It was really funny as I bet you all have had that EXACT conversation with me about a decade ago.  And, just like I probably did, upon buying his PS2 he has been absolutely glued to the TV screen since Christmas.  Irony has a funny way of showing you the past, don´t you think?
 
Ah, we just went to the Baha´i temple today.  It´s a smaller international religion that essentially preaches union in every way imaginable.  They claim to believe in Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Zoroastroism(?), as well as a couple other sources.  They think we should have a universal language and writing system and that we should be united in everything.  It was made in 1842, I think.  As far as my analysis goes, I consider it admirable and remarkably but expectedly modern.  However, I consider the idea of simultaneously believing in nine religions without having any doctrinal conflicts highly unlikely and slightly naive.  With how open it is, I´m not sure if they actually have set doctrine or standards on anything.  Just thought I´d mention all that.
 
That aside, we are on week six of the transfer.  Week six is notorious for being a boring week.  My companion will likely (and wholehearted) be pulled from the area next week.  I´m not at all sure what this next transfer is going to be like.  I´m just hoping I can get something done.
 
Well, I´m officially out of ideas for the letter this week.  I hope that this suffices and that you all get through the post-holiday madness without any big problems.
 
Your Elder in Panamá,
Elder Austin Michael Ascura

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