Monday, March 23, 2015

2015-03-23 New Faces, No New Places (For Three More Months, At Least)‏

Sorry Mom! I couldn't write last week. Couldn't do much of anything, actually. Including wash my clothes. But it's ok, I use deodorant. Transfers happened, and I was a little busy. But, I got my new companion! Élder Dawson left for my old zone, Orizaba, and Élder González, from Matamoros, Coahuila (northern México) is here to stay! He's fresh from the MTC in México, so I get to show him the ropes. Including the downed power lines from the nortes.  We're doing well together, and it's good practice having a native Spanish speaker for a companion again. He's got a lot of excitement for the work, and we get along well.

Today it rained a lot. Like, street-flooding a lot. The first time I've seen that here in the port! It felt great, but warm rain's always a little weird. Y es más, llegamos a casa bien empapados. 

We had a new investigator that went to church today. Her name's Noemí, and she knows the Bible really well. I love it! She's on a "search for the truth," and we've been trying to help her find it. She has tons of questions, really good questions, and always has a new list every time we pass by. She's had about a week with the Book of Mormon, and she's already in Alma. The first  time we passed by after giving her a copy, she told us, "I didn't have a whole lot of time to read, I'm sorry. I only finished two books." "Oh," I said, "you read the chapter we left you and another one, too? That's great!" "No," she said, " I finished Nephi two, I think it was called." She was already to Jacob. That was a highlight from the week, I think.

In other news, I burned one of my ties this week. Yes, it was on purpose. That's right, I turned six months on Tuesday! On September 17th, 2014, I entered the Provo MTC. It feels like a long time ago, and also not that long ago. Time's weird like that. And the mission. And life, I think. That's one fourth of my mission that's already gone. I did a kind of a mental check on what I hope to accomplish, and how I was doing. My goals aren't really so much in outward achievements, more in personal progression. And I realized, the truth is, I've got a way to go. I was kind of sad, actually, that a quarter of it's already gone. I wondered, "Have I really accomplished a fourth of what I'd hoped?" I'm not sure I have. I'm going to work harder, and see what I can do with my next six months. But also, I'm still learning that this time isn't mine, it's the Lord's. All I can and should be doing is be obedient and work hard, and the Lord will put the means there so that His work is accomplished. And yeah, I'll change for the better along the way. But in that order of priority. Always in that order. Ok, that's all for right now. Take care, I love you all, and don't forget to write. But first, talk to the missionaries. Invite them to share the Gospel with you and your friends. Give them food. Food's always good. And read your scriptures.

Con mucho amor,

Élder Rob Weatherford        

2015-03-09 El Norte

Wow, this is an interesting place. I know I'd heard about the wind before, but I didn't really think I'd mind that much. It's just wind, right? The heat worried me the most. But this Thursday, we got hit hard by the "nortes" (northerlies? Really, no idea), super strong winds that are the result of living in a hot port city. I think. Really, I haven't taken too much time to think it out. Or that many science classes. Ah well.
The problem isn't even the wind. I like the wind. It's a break from the heat. It's really all of the dirt that comes. It was kind of like what I'd always imagined a sandstorm on Tatooine would be like. It blows tons of dirt, sand, dust, what-have-you in your face until you prefer to walk around with your eyes closed. And, of course, the inside of all the houses get covered also, through the cracks in the doors and windows alone. So, imagine what our house looked like after I remind you that we have two busted windows from rude passersby. Dirt everywhere! Ah well. Cleanliness is next to godliness, so in cleaning it's really like we're repenting, and look how much joy Alma found in repenting!

Erwin got confirmed this Sunday and received the Aaronic priesthood! He's still going strong!

Sorry, because of the time I'm going to have to leave you all with this for right now, but I did manage to upload a couple of pictures! I consider that a success.

Stay strong, and a shout out to my family for tracking down and trying chapulines as well! I'm proud of you. 

Élder Rob Weatherford

Comp photo with giant letters that say Veracruz. Classic.
Also, in case you were wondering how I could talk about army and police carrying assault rifles in the streets, scanning everyone, without much nervousness, this is why. If I had to take a guess, I would say Facebook. The picture's a little crooked because I was trying to be inconspicuous in taking it.



2015-03-02 Actually, this is the second half of the post...

Since blogger is a little confused, I'll finish this here:  (if this is the first you see, look at the previous post for explanations)  PS:  Amy and I said we didn't care to do this again.  The legs were kind of difficult.  However, the flavors were fine.  Rob's right...they're...crunchy.  And in this preparation, spicy.  Though I might not do chapulines again, I would certainly do the restaurant again.  The carne asada with caramelized onions taco was FABULOUS!  And others of us loved our individual entrees.  Family Night fun...
Not bad...
I did it! 
Nervous giggling...
Gathering courage...
Will live to tell the tale!
examining it...
smelling it...
tasting it...
Not bad.
Because eating bugs is every boy's idea of funny...
Tasted it.
No biggie.  Really.

2015-03-02 ¡Chapulines! Part Dos

Recently, our family back here in Washington decided to follow the advice of a dear friend (thanks, Monica! ;) ) who told us that one of the families in the Lake Washington Ward had a great restaurant in Snohomish (only about a half-hour or so away from us) that served tacos with Chapulines that’s right, folks…CRICKETS!  Though the restaurant people referred to them as grasshoppers, I was always taught that grasshoppers were larger and green…these were smaller and dark brown, and looked like what I was taught were crickets—perhaps a language difference?)  Our friend said we could go and order a couple of chapulines tacos and try them, just to be in harmony with Rob as he tries new foods in Mexico.  Sooo…with a lot of bravado, we headed for Calle Tacos and Tequila in Snohomish to see about his.  The following photos and captions are what we sent to Rob (though some aren’t the most flattering of us, but we only had a few to choose from!)  so he could see how much we love him and are willing to share his experiences.  (I bet he had no idea we could actually get chapulines here…the waitstaff said they were ordered from Mexico.)  So…without further ado, here is our photo album…

The place:  Calle Tacos and Tequila
The menu:  yes, we *were* a little loco!
The dish:  a share of Chapulines in tacos.


Monday, March 9, 2015

2015-3-2 Well.


This has been an interesting week.

I'm not really going to be able to put into words how I felt Saturday at Erwin's baptismal service, or all the things that happened. Starting that very night we invited him to get baptized and he accepted, he's been going through challenge after challenge. Satan's been tossing out the curveballs like they were candy. Not all of his family (he lives right now with his aunt and uncle and their family, not all of whom are members) supported his decision, and the part that did wasn't even able to be there at his service. We had postponed the date before, with advance notice, for a few days later so that they could return from a trip, but it turned out they were delayed. I was on the verge of suggesting to him that we postpone a little more so that they could be there, but he told me that actually, when he was getting ready to come, one of his family members started trying to convince him not to go (and this is a member, too). He told me, "But I thought, I've made a commitment to be here, to do this today, and it wasn't even with you guys. It was with God. This is what I want to do." So I didn't say anything. It was a very small service. There weren't many people, and he didn't even have family there to support him. But he was baptized, and I learned something important that day. He was right. In suggesting that we postpone, I would have been acting as another obstacle for him, and he's been through plenty. But he knew what he wanted to do, what God wanted him to do, and he was going to do it. Y salimos del agua regocijándonos.

Élder Rob Weatherford