Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Elder Huntington's address

Coulson asked that I post his mailing address via the Missionary Pouch Mail system. Evidently, it is delivered weekly to Peru. It is:
Elder Dale Coulson Huntington
Peru Lima Central Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, Utah 84130-0150
His e-mail address is

Well, I didn´t get to go to the temple today, we have to go meet with Interpol at 9 so we don´t get kicked out of the country. Tons of fun. Anyways, I wish I could send pictures, but here is even worse than the Provo MTC with the computer situation, so I don´t think I´ll be able to get you any pictures until I´m out of here and on a computer somewhere in a little cafe, but I promise, they´re pretty good.
Its weird to think that my companion is gonna be leaving next Wednesday, cause then we´ll have a few more north Americans come in and we´ll have three different Latinos in our room. At least with them we´ll have a little bit of talking skills. I´m actually teaching a bit now, and making half way decent sense. Usually I just bare my testimony instead of going deep into the subject, but i´m starting to understand people when they talk to me. Maybe in three weeks I´ll be able to actually go out and teach.
Oh ya, Saturday was fun, we went tracting. We were supposed to visit 4 less-active member families and teach them the first lesson, but instead of that, because none of the families were home, we went tracting for 5 hours. I think the Lord knew I needed help so he sent me Latinos who spoke English. There were four people around one of the side street mini-markets and after we passed by and were deciding to turn left or right, i started walking back to talk with them, turns out two of them spoke English and wanted to practice, so with the permission of my companion and talked with Inedska and Sergio for quite a while in English. I didn´t give the whole first lesson, but I did explain the Book of Mormon and challenged them to read some chapters and pray about it. All in all we gave out four Books of Mormon and talked to about 3 other people, but we didn´t have any more to give out. As far as I can tell, talking with people on the street is a lot more effective than knocking on doors.
I have to admit, as much as I love playing soccer, I miss basketball at the church, its just so much better to have a small group than to try and have 30-40 people playing soccer. And on that note, I´m surprised that Peruvians aren´t better at soccer. I know that they´ve grown up with it, but they still just can´t play all that well. Well I have to go get ready to meet with Interpol, so let me know what you want to hear about.

By the way, we still get DearElder down here once a week through the pouch mail system.
Post my e-mail on the blog in case people care to write me


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

1st News from Peru

Coulson left for Peru on Wednesday, February 11 and we have been anxiously awaiting the first news from the Peru Mission Training Center. We hope you enjoy:

Ya, I arrived fine. The trip down wasn´t bad, we talked to some people on the plane, learned a little bit of Peruvian culture, learned that Phelps got all his metals stripped, its was fun, but after that its just been hectic. I was doing so good writing in my journal everyday until got here. I practically have no time at all for anything on my own. In Provo we had MDT where we could choose what to do, but nothing like that here, and I don´t understand what people say about latinos not working hard. My companion just does not stop, and neither do the other Latinos in the room. Its horrible because i need breaks occasionally. Oh, and they almost never leave your side except for class. Even in the bathroom. We had to convince them that the mission manual says they don´t have to come with us to the bathroom.
Ya, my Spanish is getting a lot better way more quickly than it was at the MTC, but more importantly, I´m starting to understand them more. I can´t usually say what i want, but i can work my way around it, its the understanding part that gets me. And luckily my companion (Elder Flores) speaks the fastest out of all of them and slurs his words together. Its just grand trying to learn anything from him. But the other Latinos in the room (Elder Orbe and Elder Huaman) speak fairly clearly at least, and we have to try and teach them a little bit of English too, which is interesting cause they can´t make the sounds we make in English. They are fun to hang out with and joke around with, but we honestly don´t see them all that much because we have different classes, and they are going to leave the CCM after three weeks and we´ll get new companions, and new north Americans. Oh, and our group are the only north Americans here right now because they didn´t get any in the last batch of missionaries.
Anyways, about the CCM (Peruvian MTC), its really nice here, the rooms are smaller, but not by much. Except instead of having four people to a room its 6, so its quite a bit more crowded in the rooms. The showers are bigger and as far as i can tell, nicer too. There aren´t many missionaries here though, i would guess somewhere around 80, so you basically get to know everyone fairly well. There are only three buildings (the administration, the dorm, and the cafeteria). The dorm building quadruples as the church, the cleaning room, the dorms, and the class rooms. The soccer field is really nice, turf and full goals. The basketball courts are horrible, international type and I think the rim is only at 9 and a half feet. The teachers are great, but sadly i don´t understand most of what they say, so maybe its just me thinking that they´re great and not knowing the difference. There is Hermano Lopez, Hermano Reigna, and Hermana Narciso. Hermano Lopez taught Justin Hales, so that was kind of cool to be able to talk about for a little bit, and he speaks quite a bit of English, so he gives us a break from Spanish every once and a while. The food here is great, much better than the food at the MTC, and the vegetables are actually edible. Sadly its still hurting my stomach, but I´ll get used to the food eventually. Uncle Kevin was right that its basically bread and rice for nearly every meal, but I don´t mind cause its good food.
As to the weather, its basically exactly like San Diego in the summer time, maybe a little hotter. Hot and sunny, and sometimes hot and cloudy. The good part is that we don´t have to wear our coats everwhere like we did in Provo.

Oh, and President Groberg (the brother of the Elder Groberg that inspire the movie The Otherside of Heaven ) wanted us to tell everyone not to send packages cause they cost a ridiculous amount to get out of customs... if they get to customs. Love to all, Elder Huntington

Monday, February 2, 2009

February 2, 2009

Alright, the missionaries in my district are pretty much just high school kids that if Calder had to deal with he might have wanted to kill them. I like our DL tho, Elder Christensen is from Canada and he really has a missionary attitude about him. I'm definitely glad to be leaving soon.
And on that topic, we got our flight plans on Friday, and we'll be leaving for the airport early on Feb 11, leave at 10 am and get to Lima at midnight. As far as I can tell we won't be having any lay-overs, so its gonna be a long flight. But as I remember, I'll be able to call you when I'm at the airport, but without a stop, I'll probably be calling around 8, give or take an hour.
The spanish is going alright, I feel pretty confident praying in it and I'm starting to feel better about sharing my testimony as well, even though both are fairly simple. I think whats really making me feel comfortable praying in spanish is the fact that I pray roughly 18 times a day in spanish and 1-3 times a day in english.
Oh, and I think Aunt Zan should be getting a quick video of lunch time at the MTC. Its pretty cool because me, Dallin, and Landry are all right next to each other (normally) when we eat. We really don't get to talk much, because honestly all there is to talk about is the gospel and most of the time we're just mentally drained from the massive study load.
And since I'm sure you've had this thought cross your mind, yes, it is very difficult to wake up on time, and its annoying going to sleep at 10:30, and shaving every day is one of the worst experiences I've had so far.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

First e-mail home

Alright, so I made it to my first p-day and everything is going fine so far. Things started to get less hectic once we hit Saturday because thats when gym time starts. Its amazing what an hour of basketball can do for relaxation. Its too bad I'm here in winter though, cause otherwise I would have been able to practice soccer and play some ultimate frisbee.
Anyways, onto the more important stuff, the fireside we had yesterday was amazing. Me and my companion (Elder Griffith) got to the gym nearly twenty minutes early and we still couldn't find any seats, so we had to split up on the end of the isles. Stephen B. Allen spoke about how horrible Utah drivers are, and a few other things like the challenges and adversities that a missionary goes through. A lot of what he said I thought was specifically directed at my district. We're getting closer now that we've gotten past the three day threshold and we're helping eachother out a lot more. Dallin was right about the schedule being ridiculous, but I enjoy it in some ways. Our teacher's are amazing. Hermana Scaife is really weird, but she's a great teacher. Without her saying anything we all know how much she cares, and when she does say it the spirit is just overwhelming. Hermano Shulca is a native from Ecuador, so he helps out a lot too. He doesn't have the feminine touch that Hna Scaife does, but I like listening to his accent, and I think its pretty cool that he played pro soccer in Ecuador when he was fourteen. Hermano Cole teaches us for a few hours on Wednesdays, kind of a sub for Hna Scaife, and he went to Peru on his mission, so come this Wednesday I'm sure I'll have plenty of questions for him.
I'm already excited to leave this place. Its not that the MTC is all that bad, although it kinda is, but I want to go down to Peru and start really learning and talking with people. I know I'm not ready for that yet and thats what I'm trying to prepare for now, but I can't help wanting to be in Peru. I already know how to pray and bare my testimony in Spanish, and I'm starting to understand my teachers more when they try to talk to our class in the language. Its not a lot, but I think its more than I learned in two years of high school.
Oh, and I just got back from the temple. I've almost got everything down, so thats nice, but I like the Las Vegas temple a lot more than the Provo temple. I did my first sealing session (it took forever), but it was really.... ummm... awe inspiring to hear the marriage ceremony.
Anyway, I'm almost out of time so I want to send this out before the browser closes on me. I love you both and want you to know that even though this experience is completely overwhelming right now, its worth it. Thank you so much for teaching me the gospel and teaching me to accept what the Lord wants from me.
Your Son,
Elder Huntington