Monday, June 28, 2010

Pirque and the Andes!

So here we are after another week here in Pirque. To be honest, nothing really exciting happened this week which is kinda boring. World cup is happening though and its crazy. Everyone here goes nuts when Chile plays. Speaking of that, they just played and lost to Brazil 3-0 :( pobrecitos. But Chile played well, but Brazil played better. And before you think that I'm chueco and watched the game, we got permission from President to watch today haha :D So we enjoyed some nice soccer. But now Chile is out of the tournament, along with the USA. Oh well, life goes on I suppose. It was pretty funny though, we headed over here right after the game ended and the people we saw looked really really sad. They take their futbol seriously here.

  Lets see, the rest of the week was pretty decent. We got disappointed on Saturday because we were supposed to do a temple tour with our investigators Juan and Yazna, but they cancelled on us because they had a friend that was leavig from Chile so they were gonna be with him. But we rescheduled and are gonna go with them on Wednesday now, so that's good.
  In terms of other investigators, we don't have much. We don't have much time to do knocking but we need to dedicate more to doing it because we don't have many people to teach at the moment. We are teaching the neighbors of a family and they're good. There's a 15 year old named Alex and he is really interested. He's a really different kid. He isn't like the rest of the kids here in Chile because the majority at that age are doing things they definitely shouldn't be doing but Alex really likes the religous things. So we're going to be working with him a lot.
  Me and Elder Sáenz are doing really good though. We're a good team and happy together and teach well together. He was kinda sad cuz mexico lost though, haha.
  Today for p-day we went and played soccer for a little bit with some of the other Elders and then we came back to watch the game and eat asado! The family we live with made an asado (barbeque) and it was pretty delicious.
  In terms of other things that happened this week there was really nothing. Haven't seen a ton of progress in our investigators, we need to find more, and at church no one showed up :(    None of our investigators at least. But attendance was low too, but that was a combination of cold and three day weekend (I think here in Chile theres a holiday every month).
  It has gotten cold here. And rainy. But in the nights its pretty cold. In the mornings when we wake up there's tons of frost on the floor. They say we might see some snow here in Pirque this winter. Now that would be exciting.
  Well family I love you all and hope you're all doing good. I'm doing great here, I'm loving it and loving work. There's nothing more important I could be doing and there's nothing I'd rather be doing. This church is true and blesses lives! Love you all, til next week!

Elder Aaron Mayberry


Andes mountains (in background)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Relax, You're in Pirque!

  That is what it says on some of the signs here in good ole Pirque. Relax, you're in Pirque. And it's really true, it's so much different here than in the city. I am really enjoying it here. A lot of this letter will be talking about the sector and stuff that goes on and what has happeend and all that jazz. But first off....

  Lakers won! Haha, that's pretty cool. Too bad I was here. But Chile won their game in the world cup today so that's cool. And the States isn't doing bad I've heard. Anyway,
  So Pirque. I've completed my first week here and is pretty much flown by. I dunno where to get start. So Pirque is a comuna in Santiago, comuna being like an area, but it's kinda not Santiago because it's not really city, more like country area. And the whole comuna is our sector. Its gigantic. Elder Sáenz says on bike it would take a few hours to go end from end. But it's not too bad. We do a lot of bus riding and bike riding. We haven't got on the bikes yet though, because the whole week was terribly cold and it rained a lot, on Thursday or Friday it rained the entire day. Ah, we live in the house of a member of the church. Her son is currently attending BYU. We live in the addition to her house in the back. So it's pretty cool. She makes us lunch on Mondays, which is good for me because as you know I'm kinda lazy. They have two dogs, a rooster, and like 15 chickens. And the rooster wakes me up every morning! But Elder Saenz says you just get used to it. So like I said we have to take either busses or bikes to travel around the sector. Or of course, you got old fashioned feet. Here we don't get as many lessons because we do spend a lot of time travelling. Sometimes the busses take a while to get around or sometimes we don't wanna use the money and go on a super short bus ride so we just walk for like 45 mins haha. But it's really cool here. The people are completely different. Everyone says that the people here are like the people in the south of Chile, the people who live in the country. They're just friendlier, more open to listen to us, and all around nicer to us as missionaries. Also, in Santiago, it is illegal to burn firewood. But here in Pirque it isn't, so everyone has these stoves in their houses called salamandras and you just stick he firewood in there and it heats up the house amazingly. It's really really nice because it is a little colder here. Unfortunately, in out part of the house we don't have one, so we freeze. Just a joke, we don't freeze. Dad would love it here, because its like we're in the outdoors. There's a river, the Andes mountains are close and pretty looking with the recent snowfall(which could potentially get to Pirque), long roads with no cars or people, trees, all that good nature stuff. That's pretty much my sector. I'm loving it here. Its a great break from the craziness of the city life, with people everywhere, flaites, and regaeton blasting everywhere. So it should be a good time spent here. And don't worry I've already took a ton of pictures.
A couple of experiences to help you know what it's like here in the sector.
  -We see huasos a lot here. Huasos are the cowboys of Chile. They're riding horses, with their hats and ponchos, it's pretty cool. I'll have to show you a picture of them.
   -The other day we were walking down the street and I was looking to the side or something and Elder Saenz says oh man! and I look ahead and there's three bulls running down the street towards us! Some guy pops out of nowhere and says, don't worry, and then guides them off down a street to their corral.
  - We were also walking down the street on Tuesday or Wednesday. We were looking for an old investigator that the missionaries were teaching a while back. The problem is in this sector is that their numbering and street naming system isn't good. Lots of times there aren't street names. So we were walking on the street and some guy in his car stops and tells us to get in, so we do and he says where you going? we tell him the address and he asks us the question, who are you trying to see? We tell him the name and he responds, "oh I don't know her. and I know everyone here in Pirque because I've lived here all my life. Let's go to this little store and ask the guy, he knows everyone" so we went there and he asked the guy but the guy wasn't sure, when in walk two random guys into the store and say, "oh yeah we know her, she lives right over there!" so then we got to the house.
But that's how it is here. Pretty different but I like it a lot.
  In terms of other things. Our investigators are doing good. We are teaching a couple called Juan and Yazna who are really cool. They are really close to getting baptized, they already have their testimonies and everything, but they need to get married. We're doing a temple tour with them on Saturday and then we're gonna ask them what they think. But yeah, at the moment those are the only ones I remember really. There's others but we're working with them. No one went to church though so that was disappointing.
  Other things that went on this week.....We had interviews with President this week and they went really good. Pres. gave me some really good advice. These next few changes should be interesting. Oh, my zone leader is Elder Evans, the one that was my second comp. Hes "dying" this change, or say,  he's going home at the end of July. so that's cool, we got to catch up and we see each other once a week.
  On friday we had a Priesthood activity in the house of one of the members. And Elder Saenz made authentic Mexican tacos and it was really delicious. He found a mexican restaurant that actually makes mexican tortillas and we made some tacos and quesadillas and guacamole for the men of the ward. It turned out really good.
  Well that is basically it. I'll have a more descriptive letter next week, with more details on things. It's gonna take me years to figure this sector out though, its huge. We'll see. But I'm loving it here. This change is gonna be a really good one. Hope that you are all doing really good over there in the States! I'm doing really well here in the far distant land of chile. Hope your week goes well. Talk to you next week!

Elder Aaron Mayberry

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Blessings in disguise.

Well hello again from Santiago Chile. Things are doing great here! Well, the weather isnt too amazing but thats all good. Its been cloudy and cold and sometimes rainy. So not too much fun for missionary work. But other than that things are amazing.
  This week was a pretty fome one. Not much was accomplished in terms of investigators and we can't find anyone to teach. It's so frustrating sometimes. Because we'd knock for hours a day the whole change and we found very very few people. So it was kinda rough. But it was a good change and I learned a ton and met some amazing people. Abraham and Carolina continue progressing. Abraham told us in the last visit that he believed that there was a prophet today so that was really cool. And, as changes were nearing, he told us that if we left that we didnt have to worry, because they were going to keep going in the gospel without fail. So that was basically amazingly reassuring and a very cool feeling. It has been amazing to see the changes they've been making and the happiness they've received because of it. They know this church is true and are gonna keep going. So they were definitely the highlight of the change and I hope that they keep going. But other than that, the week was lame haha. Except for..........changes. And this is what happened.
  So, we get home Sunday night to await the call. At about 10:30 or so the power went out cuz it was raining, and at like 10:45 we got the call about changes. They said Elder Laney, se va (you're going), which was expected because he was already there a long time. Then they said Elder Mayberry, tambien se va(you're also going). Yeah. Needless to say I was shocked and extremely disappointed. It is no fun being in a ward for only 6 weeks. And you have to pack ALL your stuff which is the worst part easily of changes. So yeah. The other two elders in that sector are staying and are gonna be the only ones working there now. So that was a relief because we just told them who all our investigators are and they're gonna go visit them now. I felt much better after that cuz its better than leaving a note with all the stuff and hoping the new guys get the job done. But that's how it was. I was in another ward for but 6 weeks. I'm happy though, I learned a lot and feel like I accomplished and learned what I needed to. But then I had to the dark (remember the power outage?) so well after my bed time I finally got to sleep.
  We get there in the morning and they start announcing the changes and I am now in the stake Cordillera, in the branch Pirque. Remember where I went last week for p-day? That's now my sector haha. And my companion is Elder Sáenz from Mexico! I worked with him in El Valle for a while so we already know each other and stuff. So needless to say I am really really excited to be here. So, some info about my new sector. It's one of the two unique sectors in the mission. This is either the biggest or second biggest, we're nearer to the mountains, and we're the only sector in the mission that uses bikes! How fun is that? I'm quite excited. I've only heard good things about this sector and it should be a lot of fun. It's really beautiful down here too because we're kinda away from the city and its all campo, like big houses with open spaces and stuff. Mas encima I'm with Elder Sáenz. So this should be a really good change i think.
So yeah. Here I am in the sector now. I havent gotten to ride the bikes yet, but we do lots of bus riding to get from here to there also. But more in winter we use the buses my comp says cuz it gets really cold riding. I still wanna try it out though :)
  So next weeks email should be a pretty good one. I'll have lots to say about this new sector and probably quite a few pictures. But here's two at the moment, one of me and Elder Saenz and one of Pirque.
  I love you all and hope youre having a good week! The world cup started here and its crazy. But not too bad cuz all the games are in the morning. So it doesn't affect us too much. But I'll talk to you next week and let you know how its going here in Pirque. Chao!

Elder Aaron Mayberry

Monday, June 7, 2010

10 months old on my Mission!

  Well it was a really good week. I turned 10 months the other day in the mission and that's crazy! In two months the mission is half over.... wow.

But yeah, things are good here in Turquesa. We had a pretty successful week with some things and unsuccessful with others. I'll start with the investigators. So Abraham and Susanna are doing really good. We've been having really good lessons with them this week. They're learning a ton and progressing a lot. Susanna, in the beggining of the week randomly told us that she had stopoped smoking for 5 days and she hasn't since. So that's really amazing. On Saturday we went with them and gave their baby daugter a blessing in the hospital because she's been there since birth because of respiratory problems. That was a cool experience. Then afterwards we went and did a temple tour with them which was really cool! They liked it a lot. And on Sunday they came to church for the first time and they loved it! So tomorrow we're gonna have a good lesson with them and talk about baptism and marriage. The other investigators aren't really doing much at the moment, but we'll see. We might find some new ones and some miracles might've happened to us this past week, but I'll wait to call them that til they develop.
  On Sunday at church the only two investigators we had were Abraham and Susanna. But I failed to tell you other exciting news. Remeber how we had taught that inactive Bishop a while back and he went to church? He's gone every Sunday since then, which is 4 straight. So we're quite happy about that improvement.
  Today was a lot of fun because we went to a sector called Pirque. It's the only sector in the mission with bikes, because its all campo, like houses with lots of land and stuff, some have horses and all that jazz, I don't remember if that type of area has a name in English anymore. But we went there and found a soccer field and played soccer for a good while and boy am I dead at the moment. My legs are super sore already. And we had a tasty barbeque Chilean style. So that was good of course.
  I'm trying to think if anything exciting happened in the week. It was actually hot this week, which is really weird. Cuz it's supposed to be winter. Also, everyone is about to go crazy because the world cup starts this week. It should be a lot of fun, even though we can't watch haha. But the people are really excited.
  I also found out a strange (to me) tradition the Chileans have. You know how people always have things to remember of their babies? like videos and stuff, pictures, maybe some hair....turns out all Chileans save their kids' umbilical cords. Is that weird? Do we do that in the States? Inform me if we do haha.
  But yeah, this should be another good week here in Santiago. Hopefully everything works out well with all the investigators and stuff. Also we have changes at the end of this week so we'll see what happens. I think imstaying but you can never know.
  OH! I completely forgot to say that we went to the Temple! It was so cool! It was my first session in Spanish and it was really cool and spiritual. I really hope we get to go back more.
   Sorry for all the typos, this keyboard is struggling to work correctly - haha.
Yeah. That's it for this letter. Hope you're all doing great! I'm gonna put some pictures so you can all be entertained, I know how you love those pictures : ) Love you all and hope you have a good week!

Elder Aaron Mayberry
1. Me, comp, Abraham, Susanna, and daughter in hospital.

2. Me, comp, Abraham, Susanna, and recent convert at the temple

3. The zone after the activity today.

4. Elder Johnston with the dog that decided to follow us on the bus to the activity. Bus driver said that he doesnt even care. No big deal!