Hello and manahoana America peeps. This week was full of fun and exciting adventures, so sit back and remember, keep your arms and legs attached to your body at all times.
So, Friday is where I'll start. Friday morning during our study time we got a call from one of our times times must be an appointment saying that they couldn't do it that day, but they rescheduled so it wasn't a huge deal. Then we went out to go to work and our first time dogged us, I don't think she is very serious because she does that every time. So we went tracting and found a guy we hadn't gotten ahold of a couple days earlier so we taught him and one of his daughters. Then we went to our next time, and he wasn't in. We couldn't find him but he called us later and rescheduled. So we just went to our next time, a recent convert and taught about enduring to the end. A member from the ward was supposed to meet us there and go with us the rest of the day, but he didn't show up. Then we went and taught the relative of V, I think her cousin or something. The whole family was all members and the whole time they wouldn't stop talking about baptism and how excited they are for her and blah blah blah and about halfway through the lesson she said she would be right back and promptly left. We waited a half hour before we gave up. She didn't come back. Then we got a call saying that another time couldn't do it. So we were pretty discouraged, and our member help didn't show up. But, we had a suare (dinner appointment) so we were still happy about that, and we even made brownies to take. We got there and they gave us some crackers on a plate and a small glass of fanta. But whatever, I went home and made Sedaap. Delicious as always.
Saturday morning we were excited because there was a service project in the morning at the church with the young men. So we showed up at nine, and there was no one there. Malagasies are notoriously late, so we weren't too concerned. Then at about 9:45 there was still no one there. Not even the leaders. The leaders didn't show up for their own activity. We talked to the young mens president and he said he didn't go because he didn't think anyone else would. He was right, but that's still a pretty terrible attitude. Then we went out and taught a few lessons, one to be exact. Two times in a row didn't show up. Then we taught a lady who is way cool! About ten people in the room, all listening so intently to me explain the plan of salvation. Dadabe (grandpa) is way cool, and way mahay at the scriptures! He has read the bible like a million times, and he likes our lessons. He doesn't go to church because he says they aren't going with the bible. I don't think he has a problem with the book of mormon either. So I am way pumped for that! Then we went to go to a dinner with a member family. Always good food when we go there. Unfortunately, they weren't home. So we had to go home and have, you guessed it, sedaap. Good stuff, but it gets old when it's two meals a day of the stuff. Next letter to him will be about how eating this too much is not healthy. Then Sunday we went to church, which went really well from what I understood, which isn't much. I guess the Bishop was tearing people up (so to speak) for not doing their duties and helping the missionaries. Awesome, and exactly what they need. Most places need a call to repentance, Madagascar needs a call to arms. Goes very well with David A Bednar's talk from this April I believe. Look it up, it's sick. Speaking of him, when he talks you make sure to listen. He doesn't really stand out as far as voice or intensity like Holland and Uchtdorf, but if you listen to what he says you will feel the spirit. I promise you that. Anywho, Sunday our first time bailed on us, they were at a concert. So we went tracting for a little while, and then our next time called and bailed on us too. So we tracted and contacted people until six when we went and taught F and his family. The Lord is blessing us with them right now, they are so excited to learn, they are coming to church, and he wants to get baptized I am excited for them, and they are taking to heart everything we teach them. Sunday night was interesting, we taught this lady who helped translate the Book of Mormon into Malagasy. She went inactive though, so we are trying to get her to come to church. She doesn't listen to a thing we say. She knows she has no reason for not coming, and she knows that the church she is going to isn't true, she said so herself, but she won't come back. The only reason we go at all is because it's our ward mission leader's mom. We really like him, his name is M. Oh the life of a missionary.
Alright, so here they have something called rano pango. It's burnt rice water, I don't know if I have told you about it before. They cook their rice in pots over a fire, and they always burn it on the bottom. So they add water to the burnt rice, and boil it, then they drink that. It's not very good, it just tastes like dirty rice. But they love it. They also have a thing called ronono soja. It's like soy milk, but they heat it up. I don't know if it's different from there, because I never drank soy milk before that. But it is friggin' delicious! I bought a liter and a half of it, and I heat it up with my breakfast in the morning. So good. They sell it on the street for a hundred ariary a glass, that's a nickel american. Then you can get mofo (pronounced moof) balls and some cutlasses at another street vendor and for a buck you have a very wonderful little snack. I could get so fat on cutlasses and mofo balls.
Life rule for Madagascar 2: Eat street food, it's delicious.
Sweet breads from a street vendor
1) How are your investigators progressing? Any new ones?
Our investigators are going pretty good, after the baptism we don't have anyone getting baptized until like December. We are teaching a lady named O right now, she is super cool. Way diligent, and all her kids are members so she knows all about the church. Her husband just wouldn't let her join the church before. Luckily for her soul, they are splitting up so she is learning now! She is super super cool and loves the gospel. Unfortunately the rule is that you have to come to church for two months before you can be baptized. So we are just teaching and waiting.
2) You said you had pasta there. Did that mean macaroni noodles too?
Yeah there are macaroni noodles to be had, but cheese is a joke here. It's either ridiculously expensive or it's just rotten milk that they mold into a circle. We call it butt cheese.
3) Loved your story any other funny happenings?
Nothing too funny this week really, although McLaughlin fell on his butt in the apartment the other day. We were throwing darts and he did really bad so he ran up to kick the wall or something and his slippers slipped on the floor and he hit the ground hard. I almost cried I laughed so hard.
4) It is turning into sweatshirt weather here. Is the rain starting there yet? Spring time right?
It rained a little one day, but it's mostly just sweat your brains out weather right now. I am packing my rain jacket though because supposedly the rainy season starts sometime this month.
5) Any scriptures speak to you this week?
Um, I read the parable of the vineyard again. Still don't understand it enough to write anything about it. That stuff is deep. I did read King Benjamin's address though. That is such an amazing speech. It's almost exactly like a general conference.
6) What are you doing today?
Well, today we are going to Analakely to find my Durant jersey that we couldn't track down last time, then we are going to go to lunch somewhere, then going grocery shopping, maybe heading to the office but probably not, then back home and off to work. Should be pretty fun. I think I'm gonna buy some bread or something to snack on at the episcerie across from here until lunch.
Love you! Life story to come.
1) What is the life rule number 2 for your mission?
Hmm. They are a lot harder to come up with than you would think. I will ponder on it and get it on the end of my life story letter.
2)Tell me more about what is it like when you walk around. Do the people just stop and stare? You mentioned that the kids are rude.
It's not usually that bad, but everyone says bonjour to us because they assume we are french and they call us faza because we are white. It gets pretty annoying but I deal. Lots of people stare, especially on the taxi be rides, and I usually just stare back. Pretty funny to me, like saying fromage for pictures. They don't get it but I laugh every time. Everyone wants to sell us stuff, but no one wants to be nice to us. A lady last week in Analakely was helping McLaughlin find some pants and in the process said that Joseph Smith "tentena foana" which means empty words, or basically that he was full of crap. I just looked at her like are you serious? But the people here just don't understand that they shouldn't bite the hand that feeds them. That's why no countries are helping them right now. France helped them out at the beginning and they kicked them out of the country. France also used this place as a toilet but that's another story. Then the last president was working with South Africa, England, and America to get help and the country was starting to go places. Then the new guy bought up a small army and overthrew the government. Now, because he broke the law, no one is helping them out and the country is sinking deeper and deeper into their own poo river. Just ridiculous.
3) Anything else you care to share with me? Is there anything I can do for you?
Um, I don't think so. I would really appreciate some family pictures, just email them to me and I can put them on my card and get them printed off for like 15 cents a picture. It's super cheap and I can see my family more! haha I only have one picture of all of us. Other than that no, but I didn't get an email from Wyatt about how homecoming went so I don't know whats up with that.
One more thing real quick, I guess for the Christmas package to be sure to get here in time you should send them now, or very soon. I promise to even wait until Christmas morning to open it. Love you! Email me pictures!
This is Leon, a kid he really likes. He said his shirt was filthy after this though.