Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Week 3

Hello again,

So I just got the letters that you guys sent from Trek. I’m at Cheny´s (which is where the mail shows up). But since I don’t have too much time I’ll have to read them tonight and respond in my email next week. Sorry. But anyway, this has been a good week, and the time is thankfully going by faster. I feel like it was just my last P-day. I can’t wait to get into the field and teach real people, and not just do role plays all day. 6 weeks to go!

My Portuguese is still progressing. I speak some of the best Portuguese (if not the best…) in my class. So I’m trying to help others improve their language and help some of the guys who know less. It’s going well. I can street contact with people in Portuguese and can respond to about half of what they ask me back (I practice with my Brazilian roommates who like to make it challenging for me). Also, we translated our first lesson into Portuguese, and if I need to I can say most of it without notes. We practice a lot, and since we have an uneven amount of companionships someone usually has to teach the instructor, and it’s usually me. I like teaching the instructors though, because they don’t help me out unless I really need it, and they usually make me try to say it all in Portuguese without any help. So that’s going well. Our district has had a few problems with focusing all the time, but this week we have all been dialed in and focused.

The food this week has been better. Still a lot of rice and beans but I’m getting used to it. Gym time is one of my favorite parts of the day cuz we get to just hang out and ball it up. Thursdays we don’t have gym and just have class, and its death. I’m so dead by the end of Thursdays. I never thought Id actually be able to go to sleep at 10:30, but it’s pretty easy at the end of Thursdays.

Today we went to the police station to get finger-printed and stuff, so we didn’t go to the temple, which means we have a lot more time today. After I get done with this I’m probably going to go on a quest with someone else in my district to find ice cream. We found a legit drink shop on the corner of a street and we just kick it there and order abacaxi (pineapple) drinks. They are amazing. We just need to be careful we say abacaxi and not abacaxe cuz that’s avocado juice, and I hear that isn’t as good...the pineapple here is so good. It's way legit. Some of the fruit they have at the CTM is pretty weird, but we down the pineapple.

In 2 weeks we go out proselyting on the streets of Sao Paulo. Kinda crazy. I’m stoked though. Just walking around today I’ve been able to understand a lot of the Brazilians around here. My comp bought a sweater (cuz it’s a little chilly here. it is winter...) and I talked with the guy working there for a little bit in Portuguese. So much fun. I was excited I could understand most of what he was saying.

It feels weird seeing new guys come in. I knew 4 guys in the last group that came in. So that was pretty cool to be able to talk with them. My district is pretty tight now and we all get along fairly well. My comp and I had a rough spot or 2 this week but I think we are chill now. Being with a full district almost all the time is helpful, cuz it would be hard to just chill with my comp all the time. My Brazilian roommates leave in a week. I’m hoping that we get new ones in so that we can practice our Portuguese in the room.

Well, that was pretty much my week. Thanks for the letters. I think that I’m going to go hit up the streets of Sao Paulo again. I can’t wait to get to Manaus. It feels like Seattle here. Kinda gray and coldish. So I’m ready to head to the warm (even if it will be really warm). Hope all is going well and I’ll email you next week.

-Elder Eric Stapley

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