Wednesday, August 1, 2012

August 1, 2012 (Lima MTC)

Hola Familia!

Who is excited for some news from Peru? It has been such a great week here, where to begin? We started classes wedensday night after we got through all the orientation. Classes are very similar to Provo here, same basic time schedule. One BIG difference though, the teachers really don´t understand any english. You can try to as how to say something in spanish, but really they don´t have any clue how to translate to English. Me and two other kids in the class are usually looked to when someone wants to know how to say something in Spanish. So that makes it pretty darn tough! But we work through it and everything seems to be running pretty smoothly now.

Thursday we got the chance to attend a session at the Peru temple. Don´t let the pictures of the temple decieve you, it looks like the temple is settled nicely on a beautiful remote hilltop. Definitely not! This temple is in the middle of a bustling city, (seriously there are a TON of people here in Lima.) the session was really cool though, I decided to opt out of the translation and to just listen to it Spanish. I understood most of it, but when i got to the vail i´m pretty sure my veil worker was from the mountains and knew solo quechua before because his spanish was just mumbling. So I just mumbled too, I think there are going to be a lot of things in Spanish that I end up knowing before I understand them in English.

Ok lets talk a little about lima. It is a HUGE city. There are quite a few differences too. One, the traffic is completely nutz. The first time all the American missionaries got in the CCM van they thought they were going to die, it was really funny actually. All the sisters were trying to give advice to the Native driver, and then hiding their faces. Its eat or be eaten here in Lima. If buddy the Elf were here, he would have to look out for more than just the "yellow ones" (Although you really aren´t supposed to take the taxies here because apparently some of them will take you to some place where you will get robbed) because no car will stop for you. The sisters didn´t get that either so we had some close calls walking from the temple back to the CCM.

The food here was great! For about one week. The president warned us in a mtg that we would get diarrhea at some point here at the CCM, and that it would last for about a day and then pass. I was expecting it a few days after we came, but it has a way of sneaking up on you. Our district has nicknamed it the "pox". It was pretty miserable. for some people it happens in a few days, for others, it takes weeks! I swear it is some evil plan of the wokers in the cafeteria. They actually give pills to the latin missionaries though, to clear out the parasites and things they may have brought from home. This has resulted in a lot of missionaries spending a lot of time in the bathroom. Sorry, this is definitely gross, but mom you wanted to hear everything so there you go ;)

I was put in a trio after about three days at the CCM, a new elder named Elder Driggs ( so Ironic i would kill to see matt right now) showed up late friday night. My American companions are elder Driggs and elder Nolan, and they know very little spanish, almost nada. This has been a little tough! The first lesson we taught i was expecting some input from them and i got about 30 seconds  between them. So I had to give and entire lesson on my own! since then we have been hitting the spanish hard, but it is really tough for both of them so keep em in your prayers.

All in all things are so great here, wonderful teachers, good food (after you pass the pox) and lots of awesome missionaries. The mail system is really bad here in lima. I think it costs about 5 US dollars to send a letter home. They do have a pouch system here though, but I had no Idea so i didn{t bring any of my US stamps. I think they send the pouch back to Lima, so mom if you could send me a letter with stamps that would be so great! I would love to hear from everyone so pls send me some letters. My good bud elder Sherman is here at the MTC though and he has some US stamps he is going to lend me, so don{t worry I´ll do my best to respond to all of your letters.

Its a new place, with lots of new people and a new language! At first I was a little homesick, but after some thought and a few days to get a aquainted i realized what a blessing it is to serve a different people, and try to love them as the Lord loves them! This gospel will go into all the world and I am soo grateful that i get to be a part of that. I love all of you! thank you so much for your love and support, I will talk to you in a week!

con much amor

Elder Neff

P.s. my eye has kinda stopped going down, but that is ok! I think I may need some sunglasses, here is a picture of what it will probably end up looking like in the end :( I know they have a lot of ways to fix the issues with light sensitivity though, and that it will all  be ok! I am so grateful to have the opportunity to serve here in peru.
here is a pic of it, sorry its kinda weird i was trying to get a close up of my eye

Elder Neff

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