Not a lot of time this week, but I'm glad to hear from you, and I have a lot to say, so I'll hurry and hope it makes sense!
If anybody is worrying about me, tell them not to! We are SUPER well taken care of out here, everybody loves us and is willing to do anything for us that we ask them. Kiribati is seriously the best place in the world to be a missionary. I should NOT be worried about!
Anyway, for this week. Started work on building a mwaneaba! Local meetinghouse. Just saying, if anybody ever feels like being a roman warrior, try clearing bush with a machete. SO MUCH FUN. Loved it. :)
Also, glad for every experience that I've ever had building, and organizing stuff, because this mwaneaba could very well turn out to be the ultimate eagle project! :) Haven't started actual construction yet, because we don't have official confirmation yet, but we're clearing land and making plans. And it's exciting!
My new comp gets here in two days, and it turns out, he's a big Polynesian fellow! So, biking the 20 something miles one way to get up North, and then coming back... This is going to be exciting. :) We'll see how it happens!
Anyway, not much time this week, but I want you to know that I'm in good shape! Still a bit overwhelmed by what I'm about to do, but excited. It's a good work, and God helps us.
Love you loads!
April 21, 2014 Letter
We're late again this week, another no-internet day yesterday. But this week has been a CRAZY one! So... I'll just start the big thing and see how long this takes. :)
HOW TO MAKE A HERO
(Disclaimer: Recipe made from observation. Before attempting to cook, potential chef should consult the Master Chef first.)
1. Place 1 person in slow cooker.
2. Add 2 parts enthusiasm and 1 part training and preparation. Begin stirring.
3. Add 7 parts trials and tribulations. (For a Nonouti flavour, use rain, puddles, mud, blisters, ridiculously far distances, and sleep deprivation.)
4. Stir vigorously, adding prayer as needed.
5. Place in taffy-stretcher. Stretch to snapping point. Put it all back in the slow cooker.
5. Repeat parts 3 through 5 until well done.
OPTIONAL: Add witty one-liners to taste.
Anyway, ya, it's been a crazy week! :) Rain has continued to fall, making the roads terrible, and on Friday night we got stranded in Tabuange, 20 something miles from home, at night, in a pouring rainstorm, with really wimpy flashlights. We both went down in puddles (luckily I caught myself, sort of, but Elder Grover went down all the way) and ended up stopping in a member's house in Rota to sleep over. Thank goodness for friendly members! And then the rain kept dumping, we didn't end up getting home until Saturday night. Just in time to bike back to Tabuange for church the next day! :) So that was an adventure.
Also, found out some interesting stuff! Elder Grover is getting pulled off to go to Tabiteuea, the next island over. And his replacement... drumroll please... is Elder David! Who is currently in the MTC! Yes, I'm going to be training again. So, going to be missionary, trainer, AND branch president! Glory be! :)
Not gonna lie, feelin just a tad bit overwhelmed by the idea of it, but I guess I'm going to get even better at relying on prayer! Honestly, I'm laughing just thinking about how ridiculous it is. For crying out loud, I'm 19, and in charge of establishing the Lord's Kingdom on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, with a companion who I have to teach the language.
But, if there's anything I've learned on my mission, it's to not tell the Lord what I can and can't do! So here we go.
Package also got here last night, with the charger for my camera and the letters from Kristina's family. It actually arrived while we were having a branch dinner, and Evan's picture ended up getting passed around. He's famous now. :) Also, that charger is to the camera that stayed in Christmas, BUT it also happens to be the same charger for Elder Grover's camera, which he didn't have a charger for! SO! Next week, we should probably be able to get some pictures out!
Anyway, that's all from Nonouti, hope everything keeps going well for you back there! Best of luck! Love you loads!
April 14, 2014 Letter
We heard about that tsunami! And that it wasn't a tsunami, that it was just wind. And also that there was nothing. And also that there HAD been something, but it had already passed. News is pretty interesting out here, sort of like playing telephone with an entire island of people. Good times. :)
You don't need to worry about us for tsunamis, though. Since these islands are all coral, the stuff that's sticking up is just the very tip of a very large coral system. The actual shelf where it dives down to more than a few feet deep at high tide is maybe 50 yards away from the shore. So if a tsunami comes, it'll jump up way out there and kill itself before it every gives us any trouble.
As far as the money goes, we get a Telmo every month out here. Basically, they radio in to the island that we got money, and then we go pick it up.
Photos might have to wait for a while. My comp's camera doesn't have a charger. So... We know a guy who can kind of jimmy rig a charger sort of thing, we're going to try to make it work on the camera. :)
This week here has kept being crazy. :) Still raining, still biking, still working our silly little tushes off. On Sundays we hold church all up and down the island, and I ended up biking over 40 miles. 5 or 6 of it with my comp on my handlebars, his bike tire got punctured. (Is that how you say it in English? I'm just thinking "teke". :P )
Getting a lot more used to living conditions out here, and trying really hard to be grateful for the blessings I DO have, not just the blessings I USED to have. :)
Oh! I've been wanting to talk about my comp, Elder Grover! Cause he's the man! It's basically like working with a short Bishop Thompson. He's got that same excited, friendly energy, and a ton of his mannerisms are eerily similar. He's from Salmon ID, and is known here as the "tia minoniback" or in other words, "the backflipper", cause he can do a front flip, a back-flip, a moon-kick, and loads of other stuff just from standing there. It's pretty impressive. SUPER hard worker, and last week, President Weir's email said that he hoped I could keep up with him. It's not easy. :) But it's a blast!
Ya, I don't know, not a super eventful week, but there it was! Hope everything is going well back there, love you loads!
April 7, 2014 Letter
Crazy week! I'm exhausted! I've had a cold, and we've been biking an average of 30 miles a day. So I'm about to die! And there's a drunk guy trying to talk to my companion right now, and it's hilarious! But things are looking up! The rain finally stopped, so we can bike on dirt instead of water, and my initial sunburn is calming down, and we had 73 people in church yesterday, which is 4 lower than the record! So this week, we're going to break the record! And ya! Crazy week!