Monday, September 10, 2012

El Musico

Greetings from Blue Hill everyone.

I really like translating literally. I never told you guys what Tuxpan means, it comes from some native language and means "The place of the rabbits"... I never saw any rabbits there... Anyways...

So I'm here in Cerro Azul with my new companion Elder Vazquez. As with all new areas and companions I've got to dedicate a good chunk of this letter to describing them both. Elder Vazquez is from Michoacan, Mexico and is a really laid back guy. He's tall for a Mexican and likes basketball. He's really nice and we have no problems. He teaches in a really laid back way too. As for Cerro Azul, like its name implies there are a lot of hills. It's a sweet little town nestled in the hills between Tuxpan and Tampico. It is the northernmost part of the Mision Mexico Xalapa and includes two major towns and a few other small parts. The two major towns are Cerro Azul and Naranjos. They are about 30 minutes away from each other and about equal in size. The chapel is in Cerro Azul and there is a house they rent in Naranjos for Sunday services there. We do divisions on Sunday mornings with two priests and one of us goes to Cerro and the other to Naranjos. Cerro Azul is bigger than Cazones was and I like it thus far. The members are really nice and they are good at working with us. Apparently our zone leader came up here a few weeks ago on divisions and scared them all and said if they didn't give us referrals then they were gonna close Cerro Azul again. It was closed and got reopened by Elder Sulzen about 5 months ago. So the members are pretty eager to help us. The only problem is that I don't really know the area yet. But I'm working on it. If you want to see what it's like in more detail, use Google. Our house is the best part of this area. We live in a nice spacious apartment and we have 2 climas. Climas are AIR CONDITIONERS!!! That's right people, I've been sleeping with a blanket and woke up a couple of nights feeling COLD!. I miss cold. But yeah that's pretty awesome. The downside is that we literally live on the freeway, so semi trucks going from Tuxpan to Tampico are passing by all night and its really loud. We also have a completely new zone basically. I'm still in the Tuxpan zone and I'm the only one left from when I originally got here. Guess that makes me a veteran here or something. The new zone consists of the zone leaders Elder Altamira and Elder Esquivél. Then you've got Elder Solis and his hijo Elder Gonzalez in Centro and you've got two fritos in Alamo who are Elder Hernandez and Elder Rodriguez and then you've got Elder Herrera and his hijo named Elder Compean. If you can't tell from the names, that makes me the only gringo. No more speaking English for me.

As for anything interesting this week, last night we saw two rottweilers fighting a young pit bull in somebody's yard. I yelled "Eyy sus perros están matandose" but nobody was home to hear me. They were literally trying to kill each other. The pit bull was holding off the rottweilers pretty well. We were gonna do something but then a mysterious Chinese man showed up and essentially told us to leave using hand signals. We got creeped out and left.

As for the missionary work, I was pretty upset when they closed our area because we had some great investigators and three young people with a solid baptismal date. I was worried they'd get lost in the system but my district leader Elder Herrera is now covering Barrio Tuxpan and Barrio Tenechaco and he found my investigators and they are getting baptized this weekend! They are named Jose, Sergio, and Angela. I wanted to go to their baptism but unfortunately I won't be able to because we are baptizing this weekend as well!

The guy who is getting baptized is named Esteban. He is a musico and he's pretty old but he's trying to get closer to God. His friend that referred us to him is Hermano Tonio. Hermano Tonio is a hippie essentially. He's gonna introduce me to a guy that's gonna make me a alligator skin scripture case. I freakin love small towns. Anyways Tonio told us that Esteban was a drug addict and has been to prison and stuff but about three years ago he got clean and has been looking to get closer to God. He came to church two weeks ago and this week to the weekly activity. He came again yesterday and Elder Vazquez and I went by his house and taught him essentially everything in one day and he is all set to get baptized this weekend. So yeah that's awesome. We've got some other potentials as well here. I'm hoping to see a lot of success in this area. And now I'm responsible for it because I'm the senior comp. Anyways I'm gonna get on sending some pictures your way. I love you all and I hope life is treating you well.

Elder Jarman

foto 1. Me with Abdon. We saved his lost dog and Elder Hansen and I are famous for that now.
foto 2. Hermana Yadira and her kids. She is great.
foto 3. Almost the whole Cruz family. These people are the best.
foto 4. New house
foto 5. La capilla in Cerro
foto 6. Cerro Azul

Monday, September 3, 2012

Blue Hill

Heylo there family and friends.

I've got a lot of mixed feelings right now. This week we found 3 kids who are so great who want to be baptized and we actually got 4 people in church, and then they changed us...

We got the call for changes and they are taking us both out and closing the area. This is my second area and also the second area they are closing after I leave. For those of you at home who don't know that basically means I'm a terrible missionary. But I'm not letting it get me down. We worked as hard as we could and things were starting to look up. I'm sad to leave this area though. But I'm not going far. I've been transferred to Cerro Azul (Blue Hill) which is in the same zone as Tuxpan. It's a small pueblo about an hour away from here in bus. I'm going to be the senior companion there and my companion will be Elder Vasquez. He's from Mexico but I forget where. I think further south. It's a good opportunity but I'm sad to leave the ward here. There are a lot of people here who I truly love. Especially Jacinto, our 94 year old third companion. I'm trying to look at the glass half full by seeing that the mission president and the Lord have given me an opportunity to be the senior companion, but I sorta feel like a failure right now. I just hope they'll let me come back for when Federico eventually gets baptized. He's a champ. I'm giving him my copy of Principios del Evangelio today so he can continue learning while there aren't missionaries in this ward. He's gotta be more than half way though with the Book of Mormon.

We are going to say goodbye to all of our people today. I can't really remember what else happened this week other than the transfers. Sorry about this letter. Probably the worst one I've ever written. But the people need to know that it ain't all sunshine and roses. But everything happens for a reason. I'm gonna send some pictures now. I love you all and I promise I feel better than this letter sounds hahah.

Elder Jarman

1. Hermano Pacheco and his wife Emilia, our sweet old ward missionaries who are really old.
2. Hermana Nachita, she is just the best and she is the one who made chicharron. I hate chicharron.
3. This mask from a dance called la baile de los viejitos which I guess is really popular in some other part of Mexico.
4. Hermano Jacinto, the greatest man who ever lived. 94 years old and still a stud.
More pictures next week. We're still gonna visit the majority of our close friends today.