Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Adventure Time


Hey everyone!

So this week we had a pretty big adventure!  We went further than any other missionary has ever gone before...as far as I'm aware, anyway.  We travelled out to a place called San Alejandro which is 110 km away on the highway headed to Lima in order to get a birth certificate which couldn’t just be sent to us.  Usually you can just call the "municipalidad" (English word? I don’t know) and they’ll send it to you, but this place doesn’t even have a phone number.  I think that I just realized that 110 km isn’t really that far, but when you’re in the Amazon jungle, it seems pretty far.  In America we could make that trip in like 40-50 minutes, but here it took an hour and a half.  So we just got in a car and took it out there, waited around for a while, got the partida and came back.  So it wasn’t really all that exciting but it was a new place where missionaries have never been before and I’m fairly certain that a majority of those people had never seen white people before-- especially because they were all staring at me and the half Mexican ginger.  Haha it still strikes me as strange that he [his companion, Elder Limon] is the Latin one.  Everyone tries to say his last name an English way "lie"mon and I always just tell them that his dad is Mexican and they’re always really surprised.  But yeah, so a long morning of car rides and I got to see a new part of the jungle that is pretty rare.  

Other than that, this week was a pretty much another week in the life of a missionary here in the jungle.  That was definitely the most exciting thing that happened this week.  Elder Limon and I are just working hard and things have just started to go a lot better in our area even thought it is possible that I won’t be here to see it all get done or to be with Elder Limon when he finishes.  He's only got one change left and I think that I'm going to be leaving next change.  I really don’t know anything though and I have no idea where I would be going to.  I would be fine either way but if I stay that basically assures me that I would only have one area left in my mission.  That’s weird to think that I already have so little time left, and that I would have so few areas.  I’ve kinda just stayed put for a while in each area I’ve been in for my whole mission.  So I won’t be surprised if it happened here too.  I mean its only been like 4 and a half months here and if I stay it will be at least 7 and a half months here.  I've never really gotten bored in an area before but if I were to get bored in an area it would be this one because it's tiny.  I love it right now but we'd have to see in 3 months if i were to feel the same way.

Not really sure what else to tell you guys about, everything is going well out here, I'm happy and healthy and even though the people in the clinic know me.  I never go there for myself, just for other missionaries in the zone, 3 times this week... I’m not a huge fan of Peruvian clinics...haha love you guys!

Elder Peacock

PS Talk to you in like 2 weeks!!! I'll let you know the details next week.  [Missionaries get to call home on Mother’s Day]

PPS You probably don’t believe me, but this soup was really good. The fish is called carachama.  It’s pretty common here.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Walking in Circles

Hey everyone!

So like I said last week, we had a wedding and a baptism for this week and all went well! Kind of.  As far as our family it was good, but there was going to be another family that has a phantom birth certificate. It really just doesn't seem to exist anywhere even though we know it does exist because they had a copy of it that they had lost and now we think its in a little town up the river that just happens to not have a phone number.  This is going to be interesting.  Sometimes I don't like doing paperwork....


So, we had been teaching this family like 2 months ago, but the dad  just did not want to get married.  The mom had been going to church for like a month straight.  He is a less-active member and part of a ginormous family that are almost all members.  He hadn't been to church in years and really didn’t show much interest in going or doing much of anything so we just had to stop visiting them.  Then, one Sunday about 3 weeks ago, they both showed up to church which really surprised us, and we passed by their house that night.  He said that when he woke up that morning, he heard a voice telling him to go to church.  So he did.  And then, out of nowhere, he said that he wanted to get married on the 17th because he wanted to get married on his birthday which was kinda weird but I mean if that's what he wants... So got it set and had their marriage this week and her baptism at 7 in the morning so that he could be there for his now wife’s baptism before he went to work for the whole day.  He's still not going to church constantly but he's definitely opening up more all the time.


Other than all of that stuff happening, this week was a fairly normal week just walking around in circles (we have a tiny area).  Two weeks until changes and it's possible that I will stay here for the last change of Elder Limon’s mission and then send him home...or I could leave and go basically anywhere.  I really have no idea which it will be but I think if I stay here for for another 3 months I will literally go crazy.  Did I mention that it's a really small area?  Part of me wants to stay here with Elder Limon and another part of me does not want to stay here for that much longer because I feel like I've literally talked to every person in this area.


And, we had a service day where we worked as carpenters which is a lot of fun! GUINEA PIG!!! [at first I did not understand the guinea pig reference, and then I realized he’s wearing the shirt I sent him, although it’s hard to tell with his arms folded!]


Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12

Monday, April 14, 2014

December It Is

Hey everyone!

For the last two weeks, it stopped raining and just started getting hot and dry and it has been ridiculous these last few days.  Then, out of nowhere, this morning it just started raining really really hard and there were rivers in all of the streets and it was almost impossible to get out of our room because there was a river right in front of it.  It required a lot of planning, skill, technique, leaping ability, and a willingness to let our feet get wet, but we got out of there and I'm just soaking wet at the moment.  Not even my dri-fit socks can keep all that water out.  So much for playing soccer in the stadium today....haha.

This week we had interviews with President.  I got to speak with him directly about my end date.  At this point, he hasn't actually done anything and I don't know what actually has to be done anyways, but what I do know is that he said it will be December and that there won't be any problems, so you guys can just plan on that for now.  It'll be the first week of December that I'll be getting home and I'm happy about that.  I know that there are a few of you that would rather that I went home in October, but this really is what I want to do.  I love being out here and I love being a missionary.  Plus, nowadays missionaries have much shorter MTC stays so really I'm just gaining back the time that I lost for having to stay in the MTC for 2 months instead of 6 weeks like they do now.  And don't worry, I will be home for Christmas and we can have a 2nd Thanksgiving  a week or 2 late if you would  like.  [Me thinks he would like a little Thanksgiving food.  I think I’ll be over it by then…]

This week was a pretty good week.  We had President and Sister Gomez here this week for a few days and other than that, a fairly normal week teaching the Gospel, doing marriage papers as always and other normal stuff.  Elder Limon is trying to get in shape to go home and so for these past few weeks we’ve been running in the mornings.  I missed running and it's a little different because we have to get up kinda early to do it but I think when you combine that with the blazing sun of these last few weeks, I'm losing some weight which is kinda nice.   I'm getting skinny again!!  

By the way.  Did you know that it's normal and not an insult to call someone fat here? That is going to be somewhat dangerous if I keep that up when I go home!!  Just know, If I call you fat when I'm with you in a few months, I'm not being mean, it's just a cultural thing.  

I don’t really have any stories for you, and I didn’t take any pictures this week.....ummm....its alright we have a wedding and a baptism this week so that always makes for stories and pictures!!  Thanks for everything, have a great week!!


Also, just an invitation for everyone to really focus on our Savior and His Atonement this week to be able to really understand the purpose of Easter.  It's really a great holiday that is really underrated and definitely way different here in Peru.  I'll bet that the majority of those who have served in Latin countries know what I'm talking about.

Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Huelgas y Rumores de Huelgas

[Email dated 4.7.14]

Hey everyone!

So the title of this translated is "Strikes and Rumors of Strikes".  So here in PerĂº every once in a while everyone decides to go on strike but it always varies in degree and sometimes it's not for real.  On Monday night, we were with the Stake President in an FHE [Family Home Evening] and he told us that there was going to be a strike for the next 2 days and that it was going to be really dangerous and we wouldn’t be able to go out and a whole bunch of other stuff that got us pretty worried.  Elder Limon and I had built it up in our minds to be (joking) that there would be a mob of people running through the town wielding machetes and throwing molotov cocktails all over the place. 

In the morning we went out to check it out by going for a run.  There was absolutely nothing out of the ordinary.  We talked to some people about it that day and they said it would be way worse the next day (Wednesday).  That worried us because that's the day that we were going to Iquitos for our council.  But, yet again, we woke up and went out for a run to check it out and it was all normal.  

Later, when we got to the airport, our plane wasn't there.  It showed up an hour later but during the time we were waiting we had gotten a couple of calls from President and the Assistant.  They were a little worried and told us that they would have transportation waiting for us at the airport in Iquitos.  We thought that was a little weird but figured that it was probably a time saving thing because we were not going to land in Iquitos until an hour after the council started.  

We finally got to Iquitos and the gate to the airport was closed with a line of police officers in riot gear standing at the gate in a preventative way.  When we got out there, it wasn't that crazy but the night before it must have been because there were broken bottles everywhere, with some burned tires in the streets with even more garbage than usual.  Other than that, it was just that the motokaristas were charging 10x the usual rate.  So that's basically all that it was, increased price for transport and some trash....


So we showed up to the council about an hour and a half late and just walked into the giant room with everyone just sitting there and talking already--it was kinda awkward.  So since then, everyone keeps telling us that tomorrow the strike is going to be terrible but really that moment never comes and it probably never will.  In all reality it's exactly what everyone always tells us here, if they don’t work that day they don't eat.  So, their need to eat overpowers their desire to participate in a truly pointless strike against what I would suppose is the gas companies.  Nobody really knows why there is supposed to be a strike but supposedly there like always should be one.  There really is nothing to worry about as far as all of this goes. There is nothing that has happened and there is nothing that is going to happen so don’t worry mom.  Also there is an attached picture of a moto and just know that I am right behind the one sitting backwards, just use your imagination... [I’m glad he clarified.  I kept looking at the picture thinking, “I don’t think any of those young men are my son…”]

This weekend we had General Conference [see HERE] and I  don't know if it was just me being in a different state of mind but it seemed like the best conference that I had ever seen [General Conference is every six months].  Especially the Saturday morning session (probably the least seen session too).  Everything was so powerful and I think it helps that now when Seventies get up to speak I really keep paying more attention because now that I've met a Seventy, those guys are also on just on a whole other spiritual level.  I really did love conference.  I almost wish we hadn’t watched all of it because with the trip to Iquitos, conference and the "huelga" we almost didn’t get any time to just do missionary work.  That's definitely the part that I don't like about being a Zone Leader, but I definitely love being here, I love exactly where I am and I know that this is exactly where I should be.

Love you guys and have a great week!!!!

Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12