22 August 2012
The CCM is both better and worse than the Provo MTC. I’ve decided that there are some things that I’m really going to miss in the Provo MTC. The first few things will be the amount of people that are going through the same exact thing. Here at the CCM, there are approximately 120 Missionaries in Training (well, that’s at least the capacity) and the vast majority (about three or four to one) are Latinos that are only here for three weeks. What’s cool about them is that they get the English Missionary experience, just completely in Spanish and in a smaller place. Another thing that is both positive and negative about being here is that the security is much tighter, and we are surrounded by a massive tile/concrete wall. It looks pretty cool, but it is sure keeping us in (and I guess the others out…). The thing about being locked up here is that the real world is seriously 10 feet in either direction of the wall. It is crazy close and I can hardly believe it.
Unfortunately (a huge bummer) they aren’t letting me send pictures here either. In all reality, I could sneak some pictures to you, but it would make me disobedient, and I’d rather be obedient than send a few pictures. I really want to send some pictures to you to show you myself, the area, my district, my companion, and many other things. The computers will let us send pictures, but the Maestros(as) that are ever-watching us here told me to not plug my camera in to the computer.
Elder Durfey and my Latino roommates are pretty awesome, super funny, and are super patient with our Spanish. My pronunciation has improved immensely from their efforts. We had three at the beginning of the first week, but unfortunately, one of the elders needed to go home due to some personal problems. I don’t want to speculate, but I’m certain that he’ll be much better once he works it out. Elder Reyes and Elder Ramirez are both fantastic people. I have had loads of fun being in their company, and they are super kind. Elder Ramirez is the district leader of his district, and he certainly deserves it. He’s a great leader and even counts down the seconds for when he is turning off the lights, whether we like it or not. It’ll be sad when they leave in two weeks. They’ll be phenomenal missionaries in the Peru Cusco mission. With them, I was also able to perform my first anointing in Spanish. He had to repeat every single word as I anointed, but that was totally fine.
The food over the last week has been amazingly tasty, and I keep forcing myself to stop eating so much. They give us sooo much food, but I figure that it is to spoil the Latinos a bit, since they come from humbler backgrounds. I’ve had to tell them to give me less on several occasions. I also have learned that foreign food doesn’t sit well the first few days. I made several trips to the bathroom last week each day, as did most of our district.
Our district is pretty awesome as well. We’ve got a mess of us going to Ecuador and the rest to Peru. It’s cool to get to know all of the Elders and Sisters here. Our teachers are also awesome. Hermano Lazo understands perfect English, even though he fooled us for the first few days here. Our Hermana teacher is pretty great, but she doesn’t understand as much English.
The Lima Temple is beautiful, even though it is crazy small. There is one floor — just one floor! 25 members can sit in on a session at a time.
I’m loving it here, and I’m sure that it will continue to just get better and better. I’m grateful for this experience and I can’t wait to get out to the field to get to work. Today’s P-Day sure helped me realize that, as the real world is pretty awesome in Peru.
I love you all loads and REALLY wish that I could send you pictures. We get Dear Elders through the pouch once a week, and standard mail when it comes. I haven’t gotten any mail as of yet, but I know that it will be coming.
Glad to hear that you’re all doing well, and I love you so very much. Talk to you when I get the chance!
PS I can get pictures with my email. I would appreciate them a ton. Unfortunately, they’re running IE 6 within a MTC frame that watches our every move, so it is hard to get things to work the way I want them to. I have to really go through loopholes to get Gmail to work correctly (like highlighting the page to force it to scroll, and other stuff). They really need to update the programs here sooo badly. I have to pretty much kick the computer to get TALL to work (our Spanish learning program). Everyone says that my “girlfriend” that I’m missing the most is my always-up-to-date laptop with Internet, and it pretty much is. Love it here, but the computers upset me.