Thursday, January 28, 2010

25 Jan 10

Anyways, we’re doing great here even though the city is slowly flooding over and some of the houses are getting pulled into the river because there’s been a lot of rain lately. I here its worse in Machu Picchu because they’re further down the river and it just keeps getting higher and higher. A few of their investigators had to move into hotels because they’re underwater now. Its just bad enough here to waste their corn crops and do a little bit a damage to their homes (the ones that are on the river bank).
But aside from that, we have a few really cool investigators, 2 that are gonna get baptized, one that just needs his mom’s approval, and another that just needs to get married. We don’t know them all that well yet, but they are all new investigators cause the other missionaries didn’t leave us anything, we just had to start knocking on doors and it worked out really well. Its just not really a good thing that all of them are in the same area, we have to spread out and start to use the members more. Its just a little hard when you don’t know who the members are… but Sister Tyler told me that we’re gonna get a couple missionary next change if they accept to come here to Urubamba, which would be great. She told me their names too, but I forgot, I think its Shellingberg or something like that. I shouldn’t know that, but I figure its ok if the President’s wife told me.
But everything's good, health is going strong apart from the fleas and the cold, and now that we’re gonna change the pensionista, I think its just gonna get better. Well internet got cut out today so i can't send you guys much, but here i go. In Urubamba there aren't any ward missionaries, so they don't help us out, but there are a few members who are way cool. I just found out that i was gonna train again but my kid went home in the CCM, he was Elder Aquino. Yes, we have to do a lot in this Branch, but not too much, just a lot of talks in Sacrament meeting. As to their work, just a lot of tourism.
Love you guys, i'll see if i can log on later

18 Jan 10

That’s a cheap shot daddy (Dad asked Coulson if he actually sent the correct SD card with pictures on it!-Ed), because that is totally something that I would do, but no, I made Conny check to see if there were a bunch of photos on it and she told me there were about a thousand, so I’m sure it was the right one, but they’re hidden in 2 different folders. (Casio 100 and Casio 101)
Anyways, as you can hear in the recordings, I’m in Urubamba, but that consists not just of Urubamba, but Yucay (you-kie) and Ollantaytambo (O-jan-tie-tam-bo) as well. I still have only been in Urubamba cause to go from one end of my sector to the other takes about and hour and a half in bus.
Oh, and my companion is Elder Cespedes, he’s from Santa Cruz Bolivia and has one change less than I do in the field. He was in my zone in Trebol when I was with Elder Marcelo. He could be a trainer but he just doesn’t want to, he told President that and I think pres got mad at him and is gonna keep him as junior companion for a while.
Anyways, cause daddy hasn’t figured out how to open up the files on the card, just send me another one so we can try again, I just am gonna keep most of them on back up in my usb just in case. And here are some other pictures too, hope you guys enjoy them
Love you guys, chaooooo

Here are some pictures from Urubamba, and in the airport.

14 Jan 10

And as to the problem with people coming to church, its getting a lot better. Yesterday we had 6 investigators that came to church, and really i could see that the work i've put into this ward wasn't wasted. I think it was a blessing that the Lord gave me to have that last chance to stand up in front of the ward and see everyone, all the members that i've grown close to, the investigators, the converts, the less actives that we had visited all there in the chapel. Now i can leave the ward feeling good that my companion will still have a good month of baptisms coming up, with Maricruz, Jacobo, Miguel Angel, Pelayo, Rubi, Jarumy, Estela, Derex, and Aldair. I don't think all of them will get baptized, but at least half of them, and even though i wont see them, i feel good that i'd helped them so far.
And to tell you a little bit about Maricruz. She just turned 14 a little bit ago and she has her little baby girl of 14 months. She's really humble and i think she had the baby against her own choice. We're not sure and its a delicate subject, but she progressing a lot and has the support of her aunt whose one of the inactives that we helped to come back to church (Rosa Casana). And her uncle Jacobo started to listen to us and is really interested. He couldn't come to church this week, but he said he'll come next time. And then when she came, she brought her nephew Miguel Angel who said he wants to come to church and get baptized, so that should work out pretty well. Everything looks to be going really good.

I love you guys and thanks for your support. I made it through the trials here and now i think its on to another place to grow a little bit more.

-Elder Coulson Huntington

4 Jan 10

Well we’re coming up on changes, the 13th so we’re getting ready for that. Its almost a sure thing that one of us is gonna get a change, especially since they didn’t send me the money for Elder Pizarro, he might be going to Venezuela soon. But there’s also a really good chance that I’ll be going to provinces. And I’m trying hard to find one of those packages to send the sd card to you guys, but its hard to find, I’m asking the pension to look for it, but it doesn’t look very promising. That and we no longer have p days for the rest of this change. But I got permission from the zone leaders to go and buy some new shoes because if I get a change to provinces I’ll be dying. My right shoe just has a big hole in it right on the heel and it feel weird to walk on it.

Wow, that’s way weird to think that Andrea is already engaged, but I guess that that’s what happens when you’re at BYU for more than a year. I'm actually surprised that i haven't heard of more engagements now that i think about it. Oh, and as to that BYU stuff, just look it up on the BYU website, the date the semester starts in January and when I have to sign up for my classes and stuff like that. It’ll all be there in the calendar they have.

And Piper!!! Sweet, so I’ll be coming home just in time for her to not be crying so much and I’ll be able to play around with her. How’s Ivy doing after all that?
And Calder, I’m not sure if its gonna hit you for a while, but you’re gonna do fine. Just take your advice to me for yourself and keep going.
I love you guys and thanks for those photos!!!

28 December 09

Well i don’t know much about the other areas, but its most likely that i’ll ether stay in this area for one more change or preisdent will send me to provinces. That would be either Cusco, Abancay, Puerto Maldonado, or Apurimac. I would love any one of them. I started there in Puerto, so that would be cool to go back there to spend some more time in the jungle, but i also want to go and see the mountains of Cusco. And if i’m in Cusco there’s a chance that i’ll be able to go see Machu Pichu too. President Tyler changed that recently. Before, we couldn’t go to Machu Pichu unless we were finishing up the mission in the provinces, but now we can go one time, we just have to pay for everything. I think its worth it though cause its about 40 bucks, including lunch and everything. But Cusco is made up of a bunch of provinces, and not just the city. I have my good friend Elder Benavides in Siquani, so that would be cool to go there. Its a little bit higher than the city of Cusco, but its still in the district of Cusco. I hear its pretty cold there and its raining a bunch. I can tell that too cause the river thats in my area is growing a lot and it smells a lot better cause its washing away a bunch of the trash and dead dogs that were just lying there in the river bed. Other than that i don’t know too much, but it looks like i’m gonna stay district leader for a few changes at least.

As to a fun story, we were walking near a high school talking with two teens about the plan of salvation when two other guys came up behind us and pulled out a gun on us. I almost laughed because it looked like one of the girly guns that can fit in the palm of your hand, but i restrained myself. He pointed it at my companion, then at me, then and the two teens that we with us and started yelling at them. He tried to cock the gun and it just got stuck, like the pin got stuck or something. But he just got frustrated and left with his friend and we kept talking about the plan of salvation like nothing happened. Whooo!!! First time anyone’s pulled out a gun on me.

14 December 09

First off, as to the package, I got everything, don’t worry. The fives, the cards, the readers, the ties, the candy, and everything. And give Stan and Judy Nielson a big thank you for the package they sent me too! Sent me a bit of candy and a way awesome tie that my companion is looking to take away to Venezuela.
Sorry, but this week i won’t be sending a recording cause this computer is latched down and i can’t get to the usb connection in back, but now that i know that it works i’ll be sending those a lot more frequently and some more pictures. You were right about the card reader, cause i’m a little bit scared to take the camera around in Callao. Its not exactly the safest place if you know what i mean. But again, no usb jack. And thinking about the voice recorder, i could probably upload the file to the voice recorder i have to play it back in the room, so that we be pretty sweet. Maybe it would be easier for becca to send me an email that way, and be there when Piper is born. But you still haven’t told me, when is she due to be born? (She arrived 30 December-Ed) And as to the phone card. I’ll be calling to set that up Thursday sometime in the afternoon. But the time limit is one hour, and as president said ‘more or less’ ao we have a little bit of give on that.
Sorry Mayce, i didn’t have time to read your email yet, but next week i’ll print it off and respond to you, if you had any questions or anything.
And the economy, i can’t see a difference. I’ve asked a few people about it too, but they say its basically the same, poor is poor and thats it. Some people have it worse off than others, some people don’t have work, but for the most part its because they don’t want to look for work or don’t want to study to get to the point where they can work. We’ve had to talk about that a few times with people who complain about the money situation and we’ve seen it help a few times, where they actually start to look for work, find it, and stop complaining. Even though its not a great job, ít gets the bread on the table´.
As to the District Leader thing... Its not that bad, but i’m just starting out. I had my first district meeting and it went really well. We put down a few goals as a district, set up the way we want to have our meetings, how we can help the people who have a date to get baptized and a few other things. Its weird to go back down to a small zone, and we’re all gonna have to get adjusted to it again, but i think we’re gonna be more united... um.... amongst ourselves? I’m not sure if thats how you say it.... la zona será mas unida entre si. Its just hard for the two elders who are gonna finish up their missions this change. They’re a little bit lazy and talk about their home a bunch, but its not that bad.
We’ll have a baptism this Thursday too! José Nicolás, the guy that asked me to give a baby’s blessing to his new born daughter and his wife is already a member. He has a bunch of questions, but i feel he is really trying to keep all of his commitments. Its just hard to find him because he works a bunch. But he passed his interview and i’m pretty excited for that. It feels like such a long time since the last baptism. Its great to see him finally reach his goal.
Again, sorry about missing the voice recording, but next time i’ll make sure to get a computer with a usb.
Love you guys, thanks for your support and i’ll talk to ya soon!

6 December 09

Hey Mom, You sent me that letter saying that i shouldn’t be afraid to take up leadship responsibilities right before changes, what were you thinking? Now i’m a district leader. I hope you can live with yourself… 
I only forgive you cause you sent me those awesome gifts! Thanks for that.
Changes were way weird… again. President Tyler changed the whole mission. We went from 5 zones in Lima to 9, so now i’m in San Martin and the two zone leaders are new to they zone and no one really knows them that well. Elder Ordinola, whose gonna finish his mission this change, and Elder Williams who just got moved up to Zone Leader. Me and Elder Griffith (my first companion in the MTC) are the two district leaders, but other than that, no changes. I stay with Elder Pizarro (but he’ll probably leave in the middle of this change for Venezuala) and i’m still in Lobitos.
So, any advice on how to be a district leader? Like you said, i was hoping to go under the radar for the mish, but its hard to do.
And as to the Christmas Day phone call… heck if i know. We’re gonna talk about that Wednesday with the zone leaders because they don’t know yet. They’re having problems cause they have to move sectors because they’re living about an hour away from us right now and in the middle of a different zone… don’t know how that worked out, but we’re gonna help em move today. But i’ll shoot ya some info on that next week.
And now that I’ve thought about it, one of the things i love about Peru is that everyone … invites you for food? How do you say that in english? Calder, translate that. I don’t know, they just give you food all the time. If you buy a little bit of candy, a snack pack or something, you only eat a handful and the rest goes to everyone around you. And i think its pretty awesome how all the families are so close. It makes it easy to ask for references, because their aunts, cousins, brothers, grandparents, and everyone else in their family live in the same neighborhood, and a lot of the time in the same house, just on a different floor. Makes me want to stay close to the fam too. We gotta plan that out, cause i’m not staying in Utah, sorry Ethan.
As to the people we’ve met this week. We’re now teaching a family of about 20 people. We’ve only met about 6 of them so far, but like i said, they all live in the same house. They’re really nice and they’re reading the Book of Mormon, they only problem is that they don’t come to church. That seems to be the biggest problem is every sector in every zone in every mission. But we’re gonna work on emphasizing the Sabbath Day this week so that they understand a little bit better, even though we’ve already taught it twice and went to pick them up to go to church.
Anyways, let me know if that voice recording worked out, I love you guys, when’s Piper due? Talk to ya soon.
MPLC –Elder Coulson Huntington