Friday, July 24, 2009

The Office

Well I am glad that the week has gone well so far. And I am happy that you all managed to get your emails sent! My preparation day is Saturday but depending on how busy we are I email at a random time, we try for mornings but sometimes it doesn't occur until late afternoon. The Family reunion sounds like it will be a lot of fun! I will be excited to hear how it all went next week. Tell the Rusts that Elder Josh White says Hello. He is from vernal and had Richard as a seminary teacher.
This week has been hectic. Got to Kingston Monday evening and went out teaching with the assistants all night because my companions weren't around. Kingston is a whole new world. It is nothing like Negril. Negril was run down, 3rd world country; everyone lives in shacks, etc. Kingston is moderately more modern. We have a huge area that covers all the downtown sections of Kingston. It is weird to have stepped from an uneducated world into one with a decent amount of education. Most everyone here can read, write, etc. It is very different from what the first quarter of my mission has been like.
Well being in the office is crazy. What we do is everyday we get up, study (if we have time, which is almost every day), and then go out and run errands all day, we get the mail, make sure that all the cars are working properly, handle the insurance, any medical problems missionaries have, repair all the broken vehicles, get visas/passport stuff organized, etc. We spend a lot of time just driving around, traffic is fairly terrible and so it goes slowly, but driving is fairly easy, the hardest part is that you drive on the left side instead of the right. And as such all the missionaries initially have a problem of driving to close on the left. We have a nice truck; it is the best vehicle in the mission. Has a nice turbo and a ton of power, the only problem is that its turn radius sucks and so sometimes it is a pain to get around.
We also spend a good amount of time sitting in the office working on computers. The office couple always has a good amount of stuff for us to do. Lately I have been working on locating every bike in the mission, and compiling a list of all the landlords along with a good amount of info about each house. Work a lot on Microsoft excel, wish I knew how to use it a bit better than I do, but oh well.
I don't get much proselyting time in, we try to leave by 3pm, but like yesterday we got caught up in a bunch of stuff, and had to take a few missionaries to the doctor and so we didn't get done till 7:30. our entire day was pretty much shot. Well I don't know what else to really say about the office, it is very busy and we always have a ton to do.
The house I live in is funny. There is 0% privacy in the bathroom due to the construction of the house. For some reason the bath room is also the hall way, when you enter the house you enter into the main room, from their you can't leave the main room unless you go through the bath room, there are a total of 3 doors in the bathroom and it connects to every part of the house. Don't know that the designers were thinking. We live with the assistants at the top of a very large hill, we can see over all of Kingston. The house currently has 6 missionaries stuff in it, and 5 missionaries living in it. We have 0 space, everything is crowded.
I have 2 companions, but one of them I have only seen at nights, he has been with one of the assistants while the other assistant has been traveling around to all the islands with president Graff. Elder Tanner, the one that I have been working with is cool. He grew up in Massachusetts and later moved to Utah. He hasn't been in the office very long (3 weeks) so we have to figure out how to do most of our tasks, it is a pain and slows things down, but we are slowly getting the hang of everything. I am curious to see if I stay in the office at the end of this transfer. I like working in the office, it is nice, but I don't like how I get no missionary work done, at times it is hard to even imagine that I really am a missionary, we travel into the real world so often, and do things that don't resemble missionary work all day long. We deal singly with the physical needs of the mission.
Our area is nice, there are always people everywhere, you can stand in the same spot for 2 days and never meet the same person. We have some decent investigators. A family we have been teaching was doing well, but they are unsure if they will make it to church on Sunday, so that is a big problem. We have another investigator, Sis. Morgan, she is 14 yrs old and her mother is a member of the church, she is doing good, she wants to get baptized, just need to get her to come to church tomorrow! Our branch is still small...sort of, we get like 50 people at church weekly, but the branch has 350 people in it, 300 people are less active. We have a chapel so that is a decent advantage.
So random news, president monson, just shortened our Preparation day by and hour, now it is only 7 hours instead of 8 hours. Missionaries are finally in the turks and Caicos islands so that is sweet! I got to see elder sizemore again, he was in my zone..until Wednesday, then there was another transfer made, he became the Zone Leader of Spanish town! Haha he is the youngest zone leader in the mission, all the zone leaders are like 15-24 months out and he is only 5 months out. He was very surprised when he got the phone call, Wednesday afternoon. I get to see the senior couple for the office everyday, they are a lot of fun! Elder and sister Cheesman. They are from orem, Ut. Elder cheesman was a dentist down by harmens on 800 N for a long time. He is always telling great stories and does a lot of funny things! It is great to work around them everyday.
Hmmm! I am running out of things to really say. Yesterday I got to drive alone for the first time! My companion and I needed to transport 2 vehicles, so we drove in separate vehicles, it was weird to be without a companion - especially in a giant city where I don't have the slightest Idea where I am going. I just followed the truck. It went well. Haha
Studies have been going well, we are only allowed to use PMG and the book of mormon now, all other scriptures/books were banned, so that has been interesting. I don't really have any great spiritual insights to really share right now, I am running short on time and don't want to try and think of any haha.
I am jealous that half the family has seen harry potter! That is one movie I would love to see but will have to wait. The Grocery store we shop at is way different than the one in Negril! In Negril it was a little run down place that was lacking a lot of food and would randomly be out of things all the time. Now we have a giant grocery store that looks like a smiths or an Albertsons. Has everything all the time. Congrats on your Ap tests laura! that is great that you passed all of them! I am running low on things to say and my time is starting to run a bit low also. I still need to email President Graff. So I guess this will be it for the week. Tell the rest of the family hi and enjoy the family reunion!
Love, Elder B. Kent Talbert

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