Monday, July 20, 2015

Pangas, Busses, and Cars...Oh, My!

Me and my bud, Elder Hernandez, on the bus.

So this past week, we made the trek to our Multi-Zone Conference. We left Bluefields on Wednesday about 2:00 in the afternoon, traveling by Panga to Rama. Once in Rama, we got some pizza and loaded up on snacks while we waited for the bus to Juigalpa. Finally, we arrived in Juigalpa about 10:30 that night and we slept for a few hours at the Zone Leaders' apartment, but not for very long. We had to wake up at 3:00 in the morning to catch the 4:00 AM bus to Managua in order to get there for the conference, which started at 8:00 AM on Thursday.

Early morning in Rama on our way to the conference. This is one
 of our Zone Leaders, and my friend, Elder Hartley (from Idaho).
Well, the conference was really good. The Mission President talked quite a bit about obeying the mission rules because there have been some problems recently with some of the missionaries. No names were mentioned, but I guess a few Elders have been sent home recently for breaking the rules. One of the rules he emphasized was always staying with your companion to help keep each other from getting into trouble. After our training, we got to watch the movie, "Meet the Mormons." It wasn't what I expected, but it was still pretty good. Nobody has seen it yet in Bluefields.

Up and down the river there are these "river huts" that are
only accessible by boat from the river.
However, I did get sick during the conference. I think I might have got a little motion sickness because while we were there, I started getting nauseated and had some serious stomach issues. I couldn't eat lunch, and I even started running a fever. I was sick enough that my mission president had me and my companion stay another night in Managua (he needed to stay and get his cedula ID card with another missionary from Juigalpa and they were going to return the next day anyway). So that night after the conference, I stayed in the house where the APs (Assistants to the President) and the office Elders stay. They took me over there and I crashed -- slept like a baby. The next day, we got up to go, but I still felt sick, so the mission president had one of the APs take to the doctor's office. They tested me for parasites, and luckily all of the tests came back negative! I was still not feeling great, but all of the missionaries stopped at McDonald's, so I tried to eat really slowly and I was able to keep it down. It was pretty cool riding around Managua with the APs in their nice car, and they drove us down to Juigalpa. I was still feeling nauseated, so we stayed one more night in Juigalpa. I actually stayed with another missionary who is injured while the rest of the missionaries went and did some work in the area. Then on Saturday morning, we boarded the Pangas and returned to Bluefields.
Bluefields is full of these little streets called "callejons."
They are very small, skinny streets that cross through the
patches of jungle in the middle of the city.
I think they are pretty cool.

We finally arrived back in our area in Bluefields about 1:00 on Saturday afternoon, and after 3-and-a-half days out of our area, we had to try and pass by all of our investigators and commit them to come to church the next day! I was still not 100%, and we were dead-tired from the trip, but we still woke up early on Sunday and worked hard to get a lot of our people to come to church.

Sometimes the access from the callejons to the casas is a little precarious.
One of our investigators, M., even went to a Priesthood activity on Saturday while we were gone, and he ended up staying the whole 6 hours! They were learning all about the Priesthood and ordinances, so he came away from the activity pretty excited for his own baptism and the day when he could get the Priesthood. The next day, on Sunday, he came to church again with us, and then today, for P-Day, he came and played soccer with us and some of the members. So he is super cool and loves the church and is really excited for his baptism, which is scheduled for August 8th (although he could technically be baptized on August 1st if he wants to). He is our only scheduled baptism at the moment, but we do have a few more investigators making progress. Our other investigator, E., is still not back from his medical testing in the city, but hopefully he'll be returning this next week and then maybe we will have 2 baptisms. After church on Sunday, we also went out finding people to teach and found several who seem really positive.

My parents were asking if there were any American places to eat in Bluefields, but they really don't have much besides "Tip Top," which is a chicken fast-food place that is all over in Nicaragua, and then a few little restaurants that are kind of just unique to Bluefields. Nothing like an American fast-food restaurant, but they actually do have more American brand products in the stores here. Like, I found a place here that sells Dr. Pepper. We aren't really given money to go buy groceries, let alone American products, but when I take out money from my parents back home or I have a little extra, then I can go buy some food for our apartment. I don't know why, but ever since I arrived in Bluefields I have been super hungry (and I think a little taller as well... but who knows). There is a restaurant here in Bluefields that Elder Passey said they ate at one time. It is called Aberdeens, and it is supposed to be the nicest restaurant in Bluefields (and also the most expensive). Apparently they have cheesecake there, so that's where we're planning to have dinner on my birthday next month!

Well, I am out of time for this week. Happy Pioneer Day back home everyone!
Selfie from the panga: Elders Hernandez, Page, Me, and Passey.

No comments:

Post a Comment