Monday, November 1, 2010

I didn't think it was going to be this bad.

November 1, 2010
MTC, Provo, Utah

Man, this whole thing is rough, but I am finding out that I'm a good worker. 

Elders Waggoner & Peterson
Elder Peterson, my companion, is from Texas.  At first he was really reserved, but after day three he opened up, and didn't stop opening up.  He's kind of short but really malikas (strong.)  During gym, I go running and he works out.  I run about three and a half miles a day.  Stress relief is essential here.  I didn't think it was going to be this bad.  

Tagalog is going pretty well.  At first it was overwhelming because we had three classes per day without time to review or study, but when we got time to study, I really, really studied.  I don't mind wearing a suit all the time. Everyone likes my pinstripe one. I told the sisters in my district how Mom tore it apart, altered it, and put it back together, and they were super impressed.

I really miss music, more than anything.  I was missing nature and the outside world more for the first few days, but then we got to go on a temple walk yesterday.  It was really nice. About 55 degrees and the fall leaves were so cool. We had a fun time taking pictures that I'll mail you this week.  

Sarah and Annie have been great so far. They sent me cupcakes that I passed out to my zone in honor of Halloween. They also sent me pictures we took at Cracker Barrel. I put them up in front of my desk. Other missionaries come in and ask about the girls, half as a joke, but I think Elder Heather from Samoa is pretty serious.

My zone leader is from GA and he is super cool. He has to be nice and welcoming to everyone; he always comes into my room in the evening and we "hang out".  The first day he asked all of our district what we did for fun and I said "I play folk music."  He asked "What instruments?"  I said “the banjo, guitar and mandolin."  Then he asked me if I knew the Avett Brothers.  I somehow knew he was going to ask me before he said it.  I told him that they were my favorite band.  We both had a pretty good freak out. No doubt, this was the correct district to be in. NO DOUBT.

When our Tagalog teacher left the room because he had a nose bleed, I got the entire class to also leave the room and hide.  I was sure to bring my Preach My Gospel manual so we could review and not waste time. At first my companion didn't want to leave the room, but the sisters said they wanted to and the Elders followed suit.  Sisters are way smarter than Elders - probably because girls mature faster.

I'm rooming with Elder Doig from Canada.  He falls asleep a lot, and I pat him on his back and give him a root beer barrel.  The days are long here.  Another elder I room with is Elder Tran. He's from California, and he's a cool guy, not too off the wall.

I get kind of annoyed with some of the classes. They stress taking notes in all your meetings. I do, I always have my pen and notebook, but it bothers me how they try to be inspiring with the same things, said in the same way, as I heard in primary.

Elder Thames and I are going to try and sing in sacrament meeting.  The other day we were in our classroom during companion study time.  Elder Thames companion, Elder Ball, is the district leader and was off at a meeting.  So, the two of us suggested that we sing.  We sang “Nearer My God to Thee” in Tagalog.  It was really good, and I said “Let’s sing this in Sacrament Meeting.”  When we went on splits, I tried to figure out harmonies.  I love that song.  I sing it all day long.  I need too.  This place is crazy.

The food here is all right, at least it changes every day.  Sunday breakfast is rough though.  They don't really cook anything; they just have cereal and milk.  I was forced to bite the bullet that is lactose.  I am feeling the effects today.

I saw Sarah's friend Saj.  Justin Roundy is here. I've seen him a lot, but I never have my camera on me at the time. Another guy from my seminary class is here.  He was surprised I am on a mission - I could tell.

I don't have time to read emails, so you please respond through or a letter. Tell me about the election, the World Series, the Avett Brothers.  Tell me about you guys. How is Leah liking being an (l)only child?  The mountains are really pretty right now.  We tell stories a lot.  I have told about all my pranks in high school and Ms. Z's big prank on me.  They all think it's really cool. 

I miss you. I love you. Payapa (peace)

-Elder Waggoner

PS - Ugly ties are gold here.

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