Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Elders in the 'hood

First of all: next week I will be writing on Monday. If you are going to write me please write before Monday! Thank you all! Next Tuesday we will be going to the famous Zone 1. The purpose of the 3 hour round trip.... Go to the nearest Wendy’s as a zone!

So for all ya'lls information, I am safe here, nothing really bad is going to happen to us. The following information is for entertainment purposes only!

 The other day we got on a bus here (An old school bus from the states used for public transportation) We noticed that the front window was all busted up. Upon closer inspection, the large spider web pattern seemed to originate from 3 small holes in the windshield, located about chest and neck level in front of the driver’s seat. Upon further inspection, the driver’s seat had recently been replaced with the front seat of a normal car, leading us to the conclusion that the bus probably got shot up not too long ago. Pretty neat.

 Also, a drunk guy the other day tried to rob us in broad daylight. He rather fancied my watch, and was determined to take it from me. You will all be happy to know that I talked him out of it and he just gave us a big hug instead. I don't much like being hugged by strange drunk guys, but it beats getting mugged I guess! For the most part the bad guys leave us alone, due to a super deep Christian culture shared by all, and while they continue to do things that I am sure God is not too stoked about, they show a respect for us, as they believe that we are sent from God, and for the most part leave us alone.

The other day while doing some ‘light reading’ I ran into what I believe to be the reason, or at least one of the reasons, that Jacob (Isaac's Son) became ridiculously rich. Genesis 28:22. More than just paying his tithing, as he surely knew that he should do, he committed himself before God to pay his tithing without fail, and then I am sure that he came through on that. Accordingly, when one day I become absurdly wealthy, ya'll will know why! ;)

We have been teaching a whole bunch of families lately! Coming up in the month of August we have 3 families that are going to get baptized! The first is actually 2- an older couple, and their son and his wife. The second, the family of the guy we baptized last week (his wife and 2 daughters). All of them came to church with us this last Sunday. We also have one more that we ran into the other day knocking doors: Eleazar, Miriam, and Pablo (their son). They have started reading the Book of Mormon and are praying to know if it is true. The last time we went by we had a great lesson, with a family of members there, and we talked about the plan of salvation, which they loved. We challenged them to be baptized and they decided to really find out for real if it is true or not. Then we talked about how other people would show up out of nowhere and tell them lies about us so that they don't get baptized (and we gave some common examples of these lies; such as that we worship Joseph Smith, that we have a huge statue of him in the chapel, that we don't believe in the Bible, etc) Anyways, as we were walking out the door a big group of about 15 people from the church where they go sometimes had showed up to visit them, as I am sure they had heard we were visiting them. It was pretty sweet, as I am sure they said all the things we said that they would say.

 Anyways, that’s all I got for this week

Elder Collin Rice


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A plumbing lesson

The area where I am is the PorVenir, it is close to Boca de Monte in Villa Hermosa. We have alot more investigators here! The ward is huge, like 180 people attending. They are actually going to split the ward any day now. We have a normal chapel here. It’s pretty hot here, not like being in the coast, but still very hot.
It’s been a pretty good week. We had a baptism of a guy named Ovidio. Back in the day: narcotics trafficker, now.... a Mormon J He is pretty awesome. He is always super attentive, and understands really well. He also preaches to all of his old street contacts. He asks them if they have seen those 2 white boys that are always walking around, then tells them that ´´ he rolls with them´´ and that anytime they want we can go by and visit them and help them have a better life. Pretty much an awesome guy.

Also, a drunk guy stole my companions pen the other day. It was pretty hilarious for me. So this guy walks up to us while we are waiting for someone to open the door, shakes our hands, and then super-fast swipes my companions pen from his shirt pocket, and tells him he likes it and is going to keep it. As he was rather marked up with knife scars, we just kinda let it slide, and my companion tells him that he can just have the pen as a gift, he doesn´t have to steal it. So then he breaks down and starts crying and tells us about a time he got his phone robbed, and then the mugger said he liked this guys watch too, so our new drunk friend told him he could have it as a gift, and said he took at least one sin away from the mugger because he couldn´t rob the watch, as it was a gift. Then he was all like: “Thank you for making me stealing this pen not a sin”, and went his way... It was cra’y!

We had a lesson in some guys door the other day, and at the end my companion said a prayer to finish the lesson. During the prayer I fell asleep, and being on our feet, did a little face dive in the middle of the street. Rather embarrassing...
Peace out, Elder Rice

Have an ugly, coldwater faucet? Time to upgrade!
Requirements: New heated water shower head,wires, multi tool, electric tape, teflon tape, and assorted pvc tubing

step 1: Evict former residents

step 2: Without removing the old pipes, build right on top of it and make all connections as desired, being sure to use Teflon tape in all threads

step 3: Safety first

step 4: Wire the shower heater to the nearest powersource, preferably not a lightbulb. Be sure to wire it in parallel, as wiring the shower in series with the light will require that the shower be on in order to turn on the light, which is a huge pain

step 5: Baptize! J

Eating healthy and ridiculously cheap

Household meal creations... Pancake mix cake, and refried beans with eggs and extreme chile chips

Monday, July 14, 2014

Back up in ´da hood

We had changes last Wednesday. I am now in a place called Por Venir, Villa Hermosa. It is part of the big city here. Our house is super sweet compared with the last cave that we were living in. Lots of space, and a cement roof instead of sheet metal! The only problem is that even though there is a heated shower head in the house, nobody before has ever made the effort to install it, and I won´t have time to do it until tomorrow. So I have had to take cold showers the last 4 days. Also, even though we are inside the delivery range of both Pizza Hut and Dominos, apparently the don´t come anywhere near our neighborhood for ´´safety´´.

The weather here is a little hot and a little humid, but overall not too bad. It hasn´t rained yet since I have been here, but it probably will pretty soon. My new companion is Elder Smith, from Utah. Unlike my last gringo companion, he is actually a gringo, so now we are just two white boys cruisin´ around in the hood. He has only been here about a month longer than I have in the mission. We get along pretty well so far. He is well organized and walks pretty fast. Unlike all of my past areas, we don´t have a fixed cook here. There are a couple of members sort of nearby that we go by for lunch, but not every day. The food is good as always, but not the same as eating back home. We do still have someone who does our laundry for us for 150Quetz a month.

The people here are super more receptive to us. Coming out of a very traditional place of the world into a sort of modernized capital is a huge difference. It has been much different talking with the people from the city than the people from the mountains.

Time is going so fast. I only have 10 months left here.10 months is like no time at all! I am super stoked to go to college, so I am sure Jared is as well. I am definitely glad that I came on a mission first though. I have developed a lot of habits that will help a lot in college I think, and I have learned how to live on my own on a relatively short budget (even though sometimes I have cheated by using my personal debit card) Does Jared ever go out with the missionaries? If not you should tell the missionaries to try and get him to go out with them. J

 Anyways, all is well


Our mission zone

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

An Earthquake and Mayan Rocks

Yesterday I had the sweet opportunity to experience an earthquake of 6.6 magnitude! The epicenter was in San Marcos, which is a couple of hours away from where I am. At 5:30AM I woke up to a little tremor, which is pretty common here, it´s actually a cool sensation, when all of a sudden it just got stronger and stronger. Then our wimpy little house started shaking like crazy. I was just chillin’ in my bed thinking to myself:  “I hope the house doesn´t fall on us, because it is way too cold to get out of bed.” J Then all of a sudden it stopped, and I went back to sleep for 45 more minutes. Everybody was pretty stoked in the town about surviving the earthquake though.

Also, last week some men kidnapped a little girl in the nearby city of Sololá. The whole town got shut down. They put big trees in all of the roads out and they only let people out on foot, after checking them well. The whole town was in on the whole ‘pitchforks and torches thing’, and exclaimed that “justice by fire would be administered to the guilty”. They didn´t find the guys, but turns out the last time they burned somebody in the city park wasn´t actually as long ago as I thought...

Anyways, all goes well here. They are closing our area, so my companion and I both have changes tomorrow. This has been one of my favorite areas for the scenery, but one of the hardest for the people that live here. They are very traditional and don´t much like change. Our new mission president is great, and as of yet, there are no official changes in the mission, everything continues as is until further notice.

Mayan rocks and a handsome young man J

Yesterday we had a sweet P-day! We went and played soccer with some members in the morning, and then after went to see some sweet hidden Mayan rocks, with an incredible view of the lake! Then we came back and my companion and I won a free soda in a 2 on 2 soccer match with the local Physical Education Teacher. Photos of the rocks and lake will be sent to be put on the blog.

Adios! Elder Collin Rice

Sweet view of the lake. The sky is super clear because supposedly after an earthquake all the rain goes away
more of my area

Mayan rocks in the woods

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Guatemala Central : The New Order

Answers to your questions:Yeah, I´m pretty pilas in the kitchen. Just whippin’ out pizzas, and all the sister missionaries just wishing I was in their stake J My corn I planted is getting pretty big actually, and the carrots shot up out of nowhere! Irvin is pretty awesome, I would really like to come back some day and hang out with him.

The other day we took a guys electric piano apart and fixed it for him. He was super stoked, because they are incredibly poor. Some older missionary couple had given him the piano as a gift, and he takes care of it like crazy, but then his kids messed it up on the one day that he worked Sunday. He doesn´t break the Sabbath day anymore though!

Our new president is now in full command of the mission. So far nothing is different, we shall see what happens. We get to meet our new president this Friday. We are going to have a meeting with him, and hopefully he´ll get everybody lunch!

Yesterday I bought a straight razor to shave my face, but it is super way difficult. I just cut my face up, and still had to shave with a normal razor after...

This last week we were in a part super far away of our area, and all of a sudden we missed the last bus out of there, so we ended up having to walk like an hour and a half on a pitch black road back to our house. The good thing though is that we had some sweet views of the lake, with all the city lights on the other side of the lake. Pretty gorgeous place really.

For P-day yesterday we got a bunch of youth together and had a sweet game of indoor soccer. It was all great and everybody had a great time, except for one kid, probably about 14 or 15 years old. He was pretty angry looking all the time, like he wasn´t enjoying playing. He went flying one time after trying to body check me, the 160 pound gringo (He being only about 100 pounds) and got wrecked. Later a member told me that this kid sells drugs on the street... Hope he doesn´t kill me or anything :)

That’s super weird seeing grandma with the people that I work with here J Thanks for sending the pictures!

Happy Birthday! For the next one I´ll get you a sweet gift! Thank you for every effort you gave. Every day I recognize more and more that you were actually a pretty good mom!

Nos vemos! Elder Collin Rice