Monday, March 25, 2013

El Perro: La Mascota de Satanas

March 25, 2013


El Perro: La mascota de Satanás significa The Dog: The pet of Satan. I don´t have much love for the dogs here! In fact, it finally happened that I got bit by one of the dang things! Don’t worry, he mostly got my pants and my shoe. It didn´t break the skin or anything. ¡No tengo ninguno amor por los perros! I can´t even look at Hazels picture anymore! Oh well. It is part of the experience here, right?

I was pretty pleased today when I opened up my email. Why? Well, because I had some emails from some super sweet people. Nate Allan emailed me from Germany! I guess his mission president allows them to email amigos, which is super legit. I, unfortunately, can only send one email a week. I can send it to multiple people, but the rule is that I can only hit the send button once. I guess my email doesn´t technically have to go to you mom, but I give you first priority because you birthed me. ;) Haha. But I have Nate attached to this email so he knows that I can´t send him a personal email. But as soon as I get his address, he can expect a handwritten letter about a month later. Haha. Snail Mail: I understand this dicho now. Also, I got an email with some pictures of Makayla! How great is that! You are reading this... so I will just give you a shout out: You are looking good! With such a beautiful smile! I remember when I got my braces off... all three times. Wear your retainer, woman! No es vale la pena para tener braces de nuevo!

Well, the past week was about as good as the week before. We don´t really have many people to teach. We spend a lot of time knocking doors. I am pretty good at that by now. I wish there were more opportunities to teach people. I just wish they could understand how important the message that we are bringing them is. Their salvation depends on it, but they still give us the finger waggle from the window. It has been seven weeks of no success, but we are not giving up hope. We are constantly looking for ways to improve. We are working hard and we will continue to do so!

I am pretty stoked for the packages. No se preoccupe that it won’t be here by Easter. Elder Brindleys parents have a package headed our way as well. We will be set with our sweets. I am most excited for the back pack. The shoulder bag would be nice if I wasn´t wearing it walking around for seven hours a day. It will be awesome to have the weight more evenly distributed. Hey, that is cool that you had Pantrucas con Adrienne. Is it good? I don´t really remember. I bet it is. Do they have Cazuela there? Because if you eat Cazuela, you will be eating what we eat every single day! It is soup with big hunks of corn or potatoes with meat. Also, the completos is something we eat pretty regularly here. We don´t really eat empanadas very frequently. Those are kind of a special occasion kind of food. Hey, I think that sauce is something like ají. We eat ají on everything. They have ají pebre and ají verde. The ají verde es mucho mejor en mi opinión.

We went into the biggest city in the mission this past week, Puerto Montt. Being there reminds me more of being in the United States. I sometimes forget what a big city is like here in Llanquihue where there is one real grocery store and only one restaurant. In Puerto Montt there is a grocery store on every corner like in the states! I don´t know why that is exciting to me. Maybe because we have to walk 30 minutes from our house to the grocery store. Haha. They have a mall there, as well! A mall! We didn´t go there, because we were on official business renewing Elder Brindely’s visa or something. But we did try to stop by McDonalds to buy fries...but it was still breakfast hours. Oh well, maybe another time.

Anyway, I am pretty much out of time. Let me see... anything I am forgetting? I wrote a letter to Nick! I ate some bad palta (guacamole) and consequently had to make another new hole in my belt (that happens when you don´t have a solid bowel movement for six days in a row.) Haha. Did you need to know that? No, probably not. But it made me laugh, and sometimes I just need an excuse to laugh. I am happy. My fleas are my pets. They love me so much that not even Raid can keep them away. It’s fine. I love looking like I have chicken pox all over. Tell Brett I say Hello.


Elder Warren

Makayla-- I can´t write you your own personal email very easily. :/ There was a slight change in the rules... but it was only for our mission and it is complicated. I will explain the process of writing you an email in a letter. How did you hear that it changed? Anyway, I put your letter in the mail today. Have fun in Disneyland. I still haven´t received a letter from you. Don’t worry, I will see them eventually. The process of getting a letter to me is complicated. The address takes it to the mission home, and that takes three weeks. Then they forward the letters to the zone leaders in Puerto Varas... which nobody knows how long that takes. And I see the zone leaders every so often. So... patience on my part I guess. I can be patient. :)

Hazelnut Pecan
Flavor of the Month

Monday, March 18, 2013

Tough Week

McKay and His Sweet Mamita, Rosita

March 18, 2013


Hey! How are you doing, mama? I hope things are going well for you. You sounded pretty wiped out in your email. Hopefully you, Adrienne, and Kashayla have all recovered from the big week last week. That is so awesome that Adrienne and the baby are doing well! I was thinking about them last week. I told anyone who would listen that my sister was having a baby. It is kind of a weird thought that I won´t meet the baby until she is almost two years old. That makes it feel like I will be here for a really long time.

We had another tough week here in Llanquihue. People pretty much hate us. They have been very rude to us lately. It is sometimes a real struggle to find any love in my heart for these people when they are all so rude to us. I don´t really know why they don´t like us. We always stop and offer to help people chop their firewood and things like that. They usually yell at us and tell us to go away. People see us coming and they immediately cross the street or pull out their phones and start ¨talking¨ to someone. All of the niños yell swear words at us in English. The other day they started following us and throwing rocks at us. We had some... interesting people offer us some marijuana the other day. The borrachos (drunkards) are always harassing us and asking us if we believe that Joseph Smith will save us. On two different occasions, some of our fliete (gangster) "friends" pulled out their switch blades on us. Haha. That one probably scares you to death. Don´t worry mama, I smiled at them and offered to teach them about the Book of Mormon. They laughed and put their knives away. They are jovenes (teenagers) that are just looking to have fun and mess with the missionaries. They really aren´t anything to worry about. I am at least a foot taller than all of them. Haha. I always smile at them and am friendly with them, but Elder Brindley is really scared of them. To make matters worse, all of the people who were looking promising last week pretty much don´t want anything to do with us anymore. All of our teaching appointments fell through. We probably are walking 15 miles a day now because we pretty much knock doors from 3-9:30 because we don´t have people to teach. And to top it all off, the dogs have definitely been more aggressive with us lately. They always try to bite us. I am more afraid of the dogs than I am of the flietes. The dogs hunt in packs. I witnessed a pack of dogs catch a cat and rip it to shreds. I also saw a pack of dogs catch a puppy and start eating it. Elder Brindley and I went over and threw rocks at the dogs to try and save the puppy. They had ripped off one of its ears and one of its legs. The dogs, of course, proceeded to chase us. Good thing I played baseball for a few years, because I definitely got them good with some of the rocks.

Even though last week was super tough, I am still pressing on. I am doing what I am supposed to and working really hard to try and be a good missionary. Last week was the hardest week in Chile so far. Seriously, nothing went right at all. But it is okay. This is a learning experience. I talked with my zone leaders on the phone and they gave me some good advice. They told me that I will look back and be grateful for these cambios acá en Llanquihue. They said that if I can make it through this, I can make it through anything. I am learning how to rebuild a sector, which is the hardest thing to do here. So… I am grateful. And I am happy to be here. I am learning a ton and progressing a lot. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be a missionary. I don´t know if what I am doing has blessed anyone else´s life yet, but it has definitely blessed my life; tremendously.

The picture is of me with Mamita! I told her that my Mamá wanted to meet her. She told me to send her love to you and to say that she is taking care of you beautiful baby. (Mamita Rosita is very intrigued by the way that I look. She is always telling me how beautiful I am. Haha. I think it is because I look super different from everyone here because of my height and my skin color. I stick out quite a bit.)

Anyway, gotta run!

Elder Warren

Makayla-- your letters are in the mail! I wish you luck with the whole BYU thing. You can do it! Keep a positive attitude. Attitude and effort is everything! I love you!

Monday, March 11, 2013


Elder Brindley and Elder Warren
March 11, 2013
Mom, we must be on the same wave-length or something. I ALSO got a haircut today. Tell Jenn that I miss getting my haircut from her. I went to the peluquería to get my hair cut. Let us just say that they don´t believe in being sanitary here. The scissors that he used still had somebody else’s hair all over them! Oh well. You get what you pay for, and it was only $2,000 pesos ($4 in the USA).
Did you send the red backpack? I have a black one somewhere in the house, you know. Haha. It will be fine either way. It doesn’t really matter what my backpack looks like, because I will be wearing it under my coat anyway. I do that so that all of my stuff doesn’t get wet and ruined. It is sunny today, but it is the first time that we have seen the sun since last Monday. It has been a very wet week. I can´t wait for the package!
Things are going well here! I mean, as well as they can for not having many people to teach. I went on an intercambio with Elder Wood last week. He is my Zone leader. So I packed up my little suitcase and went and worked with him in Puerto Varas for the day and spent the night at his apartment. He finishes his mission tomorrow. It was a neat experience to work with what some people would call the ideal missionary. He is super experienced and a good zone leader. I learned a lot while working with him. He is a good example of what I want to become as a missionary. Well, minus the fact that his “girlfriend” that was waiting for him, got married two weeks ago... that wouldn´t be so awesome. Haha. I would be happy to not have that experience.
You asked about riding the bus. We ride the bus maybe twice a week. We do a ton of walking here in this mission. Everybody walks in this mission. Biking isn´t an option because the dogs would attack us! They are always knocking people off of their bikes here and biting them! It is better to just walk and carry rocks or hit the dogs with umbrellas.
I finally got a letter from the United States! Well... sort of! It was a dear elder from the one and only Carter Payne! What a stud he is, going to Madagascar! That is totally legit! I am going to write him a letter today, so he should get it in about a month. Haha. Es un poco fome que-it takes a month to get a letter up to you people! Haha. Oh well! Can you get me the address of Nick and Nate? Their mission addresses? I would like to write them a letter and say Hola from Chile. I really have been so blessed to have such awesome friends. They really are a big reason that I am on the mission. They have helped me a ton. We will all be friends for life!
Here is a weird thought... I left home over three months ago. Time sure flies, looking back on it. I am halfway through my training with Elder Brindley. With the new cambio starting, I have some good metas to work towards. There is so much that I want to accomplish, that it is hard to limit myself to just a few goals. One of them is not to speak any English for the entire cambio. That will be 42 days of straight Spanish. That goal actually won’t be too hard, because I speak Spanish all the time anyway. P-day is the only day that I read anything in English. Everything is in Spanish. I study the scriptures in Spanish. I read the Liahona in Spanish. All of my journal entries are in Spanish. I translate all of my English thoughts into Spanish. Hopefully by the end of the cambio I will be ready to hold my own with the language. I can express myself, but not nearly as well as I can in English. That is the most frustrating part about speaking another language. I can easily share an experience in Spanish, for example: I shared my experience with tithing with a family the other day. They understood the story, but it would have been more powerful if I had been able to explain it in English. That is why I am choosing to totally immerse myself in the language. I don´t want to be satisfied with just being able to get by. I really want to master the language so that I can express myself clearly and powerfully. Elder Brindley is on board with me on this. He says that whenever he has gringo companions they always speak English together. But we are pretty dedicated to the whole Spanish thing. If I speak English I have to buy him a package of cookies. Haha.
You asked about what I buy at the grocery store? I buy eggs, yogurt, granola, 7 nectarines, 10 apples, granola bars, and some other healthy snacks. Today we are going to buy ice cream, because Elder Brindley wants me to show him how we mix ice cream at Cold Stone. Haha. Mom, they don´t eat tacos in Chile. The food here is nothing like Mexican food. We eat a lot of soup and a lot of tomatoes. We eat rice almost every day, along with potatoes. (My last two sentences rhymed!) They serve bread with everything here. I don´t eat it though, because I don´t want to get chubby. Speaking of chubby, I am still losing weight here. How much? Couldn´t tell ya, because we don’t have a scale. But I have had to make two new holes in my belt. So...Things are going well with that even though the members try to fatten us up. La familia Retemal bought us Big Macs in Puerto Montt and invited us over for once (own-say) which is like... dinner. The word once means eleven, so I don´t really know why that word is used.
Anyway, I gotta go! Love you! By the way, the speaker is awesome! I use it sometimes!
Love, Elder Warren
Makayla- You should be getting more letters! I mailed another one today. And yes, I can open your pictures if you send them in an email! So you best be getting on that! Haha. ¡Te extraño mucho! Y nos vemos despues de la misión, cierto? Espero que si. Tenga un buen dia y una buena semana! Tenga fe, vale? ¡Te amo mucho!

The Imfamous Red Shirt Visits the Volcano Mar. 3, 2013
And the Waterfalls...

Monday, March 4, 2013

Saltos del Rio Petrohue


This email is going to be much shorter than the others, I apologize. P-day ends in 15 minutes. Today has been a very stressful P-day. We did a zone trip to a national park here in Chile. We went to Saltos del Rio Petrohue. We took some good photos, but I don´t even have time to upload them today. Anyway, we went there. It is a river with a waterfall and rapids and stuff. You can see the volcanos there really well. It was fun, but it took up our entire P-day. We are supposed to be able to relax on P-day, but it has been more stressful than a normal day. There were about 40 missionaries that went, along with President and his wife. We ended our trip in Puerto Varas, which is about a 20 minute bus ride away from Llanquihue. We had to do our grocery shopping there, which was unfortunate. They have a much bigger super market there and they sell American brands, but it is so crowded! Not only that, but we had to walk with our groceries to the bus stop and wait for the bus. And then we had to ride the bus with our groceries. I don´t like doing that because they over pack the buses. The buses hold 25 people, but there are always at least 50 on board the bus. Imagine riding a bus like that while trying not to break your eggs! I only was able to do it because I am extraordinarily talented. ;)

You asked about investigators... and I am going to be honest: No. We don´t really have very many investigators right now. Llanquihue has been struggling for a long time. The last people to be baptized here were baptized like 7 months ago. We don´t have very many people to teach. Actually, we practically have nobody to teach. It is really frustrating. We basically knock doors for six hours every single day. We are supposed to be teaching 20 lessons a week. Last week we taught 3 lessons. It is hard not to get down when things are going like that. My trainer feels super bad because he says he has never been in a sector that has struggled this much. He is worried that I am going to think that this is how the mission will be the entire time. I know it wont be, but it is still difficult when absolutely nobody wants to listen to us. When I say nobody, I mean nobody. It is hard not to feel like I am doing something wrong. I am trying as hard as I can to be obedient. I do everything that I am supposed to and I work super hard. I think that it is just a test of faith, patience, and diligence. Things will improve. We are trying to gain the confidence of the branch leadership so that we can work more closely with them. I think that if we do this diligently, things will begin to turn around here.

I am excited for the package! I asked Elder Brindley if he wanted you to send anything. He said chocolate with flakes of gold in it. (I am pretty sure he was joking.) I will just share whatever you send with him.

I want you to know that the time difference here is 4 hours right now. We are four hours ahead. Also, I have fleas and I eat a diet that is high in fiber. I love you.

-Elder Warren

Makayla- You should be receiving a letter at any point in time now! I wrote another on the way to Saltos today. Patience, Kayla, Patience.