Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Wet World of Jamaica

Good to hear from all of you yet again! Well this week has been good. But first for the usual bucket of bolts. Thanks for the info Laura, I actually was already caught up on Alex, he had mailed me and it had arrived the day after I emailed you about that. But thanks for the info on Ryan, that is exciting! I have been meaning to write him one of these days, preparation day just seems to disappear so I haven't had time, but maybe today I will find some time! Mom, if you do plan on sending a package I would suggest no lead bricks, it is quite expensive to send anything of weight. But there is a lady in PG who makes and sells mini preach my gospels for like $12. I don't know much about her except for a new missionary that just arrived bought one from her just before he came out. It would be great if you could get me one, I would love one for district meetings. So you might have to try the internet or something I don't know. Don't have much information. Mothers day is coming. Which means I will get to call home. So don't run off! I don't know what time yet, maybe next week I will have more information after zone conference. Also watch the mail (In like 2 or 3 weeks) eventually a letter will arrive.
Well zone conference is this week, but for some reason we are having a multi zone conference in Mandeville. So it is now a 3 hour drive there and back so I have to sleep over with the elders in Sav again on Wednesday. But it will be lots of fun! Sleep overs with other large groups of missionaries are the best!
Looks like you have had quite the snow storm! We have had super super wet rain storms they last about 20 minutes and soak everything. We have to carry all our scriptures in bags to keep them dry in the rain. It is ridiculous. The rainy season has officially hit! I am a Sabbath day expert! All the missionaries are. We have all received extensive information on it. There are a few scriptures in the New testament that point to the change of Sunday to honor the savior's resurrection and doctrine and covenants is blunt about it. All the missionaries have taken at least one day to study as much as they can about it to try and help people understand that it truly was changed. Most the time we just focus on their testimony of Joseph Smith but if that doesn't work we try really hard to explain via bible that it was changed. It sometimes works but most of the time it doesn't. As you said dad they just use it as an excuse. They know that what they are hearing is true but are just trying to find an excuse to continue to live the sinful life style which they have.
Well today I had to extract some more money for my bike. (at least I got my bike for free!) I was riding it yesterday and randomly the rim on the tire split in half so that was a problem that had to be fixed! Got that fixed this morning and finally am getting around to email.
This week has been good. Not to much exciting has happened but I will see what I can conjure up. My companion was taking a shower and a huge spider fell into the shower with him (giant spider!) so he finished his shower with the spider, got out, put on clothes, came and got me and we took pictures of the tub spider! It was quite entertaining. Our water at our house has been acting really weird. Only our shower has water, so we wash all our dishes in the tub and all our drinking water comes from the tub and tastes gross. We need to talk to our land lady if it doesn't fix itself soon!
At district meeting this week we got a bunch of book of mormons and took them home. I grabbed one the next day and found that it had an error. It was the only one in the batch but I kept it just for fun! The book had 50 pages that had been cut wrong and so they had a 1-2 inch margin at the top and were missing parts of the foot notes at the bottom. The paper was the wrong color. So that was exciting! (anything out of the ordinary becomes exciting)
We were talking to Mc. Cloud (our book of mormon scholar) and we wanted to go and visit him to teach him. So he informed us where his house was and that it was made entirely of zinc. We went to his house and sure enough (we thought he was joking) his house was 100% zinc plating. And nice and shiny, blinds you in mid day. The house sits a top a hill and looks like a giant oven. It was the oddest house I have ever seen. He hasn't really gone any where yet. But you can see the gears turning in his head as we try to explain why the Sabbath was changed. His spiritual side wants to believe but he is just letting his worldly knowledge get in the way. We are still trying.
We went to the Mitchells on Sunday for our usual dinner. But they weren't their. They had to go to another town for something so they had left us a note and a key. They had prepared dinner for us and left. So we unlocked their house, warmed up our food and ate dinner. It was really weird to have dinner at a members house with no members present. But the food was really good! Except for the veggie bites. Veggie bites are like the vegetable equivalent of hotdog. Mystery veggies all smashed together in a strange rubbery substance. My companion likes them but I wasn't a big fan.
We have had a good week for teaching. Got a few good investigators and a lot who are going no where. We have one girl named Monique, she is 17 and turns 18 in like 3 weeks. She wants to be baptized and doesn't have a law of chastity or a word of wisdom concern so that is great! We just need to get her to church! (which will be the hard part) getting people to come to church is super hard. People always make the dumbest excuses. They either had to cook, clean, or had no way to get their. It is really annoying but we are hopeful for her! Her mother is also being taught and is doing well, she just has a huge word of wisdom concern and smokes a ton, she wants to stop smoking but is having a hard time with it, so we are trying to help her overcome that so that she to can be baptized with her daughter.
I have to give a talk next Sunday, so I need to figure out how to give a long talk. I will have two 5 minute speakers and a hymn before me, then it is up to me to take up the next 20-30 minutes. Unfortunately I am skilled at giving longish talks in very short amounts of time. So we will see how that goes. Has to be on the priesthood, so it is a broad subject just need to get around to writing it tomorrow or the next day.
It is werid not being the youngest missionary in my zone anymore. But it is good at the same time! The new missionary seems to be doing well so that is good. District meeting is a lot of fun now, we have a very good district. I am excited for missionary splits this next week. I will be with E. Sizemore (from the MTC) for a day. So that will be a lot of fun to teach with him out in the field instead of just at the MTC
I am running out of things to say today! This week has been repetitive. We have spent all week finding or teaching the same investigators. So not much has happened.We met a man named Tngo. He is sweet, and yes his name is spelled that way, good luck pronouncing it. Tngo always yells at the missionaries when we ride past but we decided to stop and talk to him for once. Tngo always yells random things to the missionaries, he likes us a lot and yells what ever names he can think of at us in the time it takes us to ride our bikes past him, his usual yell is "Latter day saints, mormons, men of god, missionaries, elders" by then we have passed so that is the end of his thinking. Well we stopped and talked to him and turns out he is completely insane! It was a lot of fun. He asked us our names and then told us his was Elder Tngo. He is a local bum who just wanders the streets. Well we asked him how he knew the missionaries and he proceeded to yell "Because they always ride the bicycles!!!!" he then asked for a ride from our bicycles, we declined so he found entertainment playing with the kickstand to my bike. He was super crazy but he made us laugh.
We still haven't had any great success in Negril. But we are having a good time, we aren't really discouraged. We will eventually find those who are ready to listen to us if we look long enough. I like what you said dad about missionaries who drop investigators to fast. Sometimes I think we have that difficulty, my companion likes to find new ones so we don't always focus on those who we have found but oh well. We have a few that we are still focusing on.
Well I am on study overload! I want to finish D&C, N.T., O.T, and Jesus the Christ soon, but I think I am going to have to put one of them on hold, I can't keep jumping around so much! so I think I will be done with the old testament till I get some of the rest finished up. Their is so much I want to study that I can't seem to find enough time to do it all! I never have enough personal study time in the morning to get through all I want to read! I finished the book of mormon and pmg but I want to read those both again soon, luckily my companion and I use pmg a lot in companion study so I am in no rush to do that one again on my own. haha oh well, one of these days I will get through it all! I don't want to rush through it but at the same time I want to get through all of it!
Well I hope all is well at home, time is running short! This week has been good. How is my dog doing these days anyways? Hopefully you are all still taking her for a walk daily! Thanks for the pictures mom, good to see home every once in a while haha. Joseph I hope you are practicing your video game skills, I expect to come home and be destroyed by your 2 years of practice and my 2 years of no practice. You better start practicing now, especially games like rise of nations where you struggle haha. Good luck with the end of the school year, especially you laura with any AP tests you are studying for! Hope you trip was good dad! and I hope school continues to go well for you Dad and mom! All goes well in Jamaica!
Love you all!
-Elder Kent Talbert

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