Saturday, June 4, 2016

Week 2: In which I play the cello, catch cold, and meet my cousin

4 June 2016

[Editor's note: Ben has been learning Spanish for a total of 10 days now, and his Spanish often has errors.  In the translations we include here, we will leave the errors in his original Spanish, but we will try to write what he likely intended to say in the English translations.]

¡Hola, mi familia! Estoy muy feliz por hoy. ¡Puedo visito el Tiemplo!
[ Hello, my family!  I am very happy today.  I get to visit the temple! ]

I'm finally starting to get used to the schedule here. I'm still slow getting ready in the morning (still faster than I ever have been before), but I'm working on getting faster. We got some new districts in our zone this week, which is exciting! We're no longer the newbies. Hooray! I kid, of course. We'll always be The new missionaries are super strong and cool, and I'm very happy they're going to be in our zone/branch. One of them, Elder Nabo, is originally from the Ivory Coast, and he bore a really powerful testimony as my companions and I stopped by the door. The new missionaries will be really fantastic, I just know it.

Last Sunday went pretty well, I think. I improvised on the cello while someone else in the zone played "God be With You 'Till we Meet Again". There was a district leaving that week, so they were really moved. It wasn't hard to do, but it seemed to touch a lot of people in the branch. Oh, yes; my companions were called to be the Zone Leaders. I already knew that last week, but it wasn't official so I didn't say anything.

I was a little sick with a cold this week, but thankfully I'm starting to get a little better. I bought some Mucinex at the store here, and it seems to be doing the trick. It seems every other minute I'm either coughing or frantically searching for a kleenex. I don't even know how many kleenex boxes I've emptied. I'm hoping I'll be over it by the middle of this next week or so (judging by the rate at which I'm getting better). Unfortunately, I've heard a few people in my district sneezing...

I actually have run into my cousin Hermana Hanson in the cafeteria a few times! She came in with the new group of missionaries (about 300) on Wednesday. Sometimes the Russian speakers don't sit far away from the Spanish speakers, and we eat at the same time, so I've said hello a few times. We're here for about the same amount of time, too (she'll be here for 3 or 4 weeks after I leave).

We finished teaching our first "investigator", who agreed to be baptized! He was, as I had completely suspected, a teacher. It was still pretty cool, I think. He came in last night and discussed with us all (still in Spanish) how it went and how we could do better. I'm afraid our broken Spanish only confused him for some of the lessons, but in the end, our final lesson went pretty well.

It's funny how my companions are the Zone Leaders and I'm the District Leader, since once a week I have to interview them and once a week they have to interview me. So basically, we end up sitting down and having a big, happy, interview-fest. In all seriousness, though, it's kind of a cool setup.

[Note: Ben had brought the "wrong" suitcase initially, and Jeff was back in Utah on business this week, so he arranged to swap suitcases.  Tammy had sent along a few things inside the new suitcase.]
Thank you so much for your letters, study materials, and goodies smuggled in the suitcase! I didn't get the memo that I was able to share the chocolate eggs with my entire district in time, but thankfully, I shared them with my companions. Had I shared them with my district, there would have been 2 extras (which might have been awkward). Elder Day and Elder Woodfield loved them, though. I've already begun marking my scriptures using the materials you sent. Thank you so much!

Now for Spanish. Yo se nuestro Padre Celestial ama nosotros, y yo se Jesucristo es nuestro Salvador. Yo creo José Smith será un Profeta, y Jesucristo viva. En el nombre de Jesucristo, amén. Gracias por todos!
[I know our Father in Heaven loves us and that Jesus Christ is our Savior. I believe Joseph Smith was a prophet and that Jesus Christ lives. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.  Thank you for everything.]

Muchos amar, [Much love]
Elder Adams

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