Monday, July 20, 2015

Week 49

Hey Everyone,
I flew here to Aruba from Bonaire and I am still waiting to hear back from the Dominican mission office to see about my stuff.  Transfers were tough!! This was definitely the hardest yet!! Vaquero cried when I said goodbye to him and I have called the sisters in Bonaire like 3 times this week just to see how he is doing. He is doing great :) I always thought saying goodbye to you guys would be the hardest, but that was the easiest because I know that in 2 years (oh, excuse me, 1 year haha) I am gonna see you again. But with some of these goodbyes you have no idea if you are ever going to see them again. But Vaquero is Dominican so he wants to go to the US, so I told him he has to come live in Utah. He agreed. Also the district president/ ex first councilor to the mission president is coming to Utah this fall for conference. I wanted you to meet them and told them you would take them out to dinner or something haha. I am going to give them mom's phone number next time I see them. Consider this your heads up. They are from Peru but speak English so no worries!
Aruba is way cool! It’s so different from Bonaire! There are tons of people here and it’s more developed than Bonaire. There are 4 Elders here in Aruba, The other Elders are in the big city and have a gigantic branch with a building and over 100 members. We are down on the southern tip of the island in San Nicolas where we have 25-35 people in church every week and meet in a house. But the house is bigger than the one in Bonaire and IT HAS AC!!!!! Best Sunday of my mission! But the members are really nice I haven't gotten to know too many of them but the ones I have known are pretty cool.
The only weird thing is it’s an English branch! Super weird to be speaking English but I am really working on learning Papiamento better. Papiamento is different on every island so I have to learn new stuff AGAIN. I am kinda sick of learning new languages!  haha.
They just switched the Branch Presidency when we became a district so we have been helping the new president with a lot of things. My new companion is named Elder Foote from Kaysville, Utah and has 3 weeks left in his mission! This transfer is a short transfer to catch us up with the Trinidad mission's transfers and he heads home real soon!
The Caribbean Islands go to the Dominican Republic Temple.
 I still have no idea about a mailing address so I will try and figure that out. We have all just kind of accepted that we are out in the Boonies and probably won’t get mail until/if we go to Trinidad. But this week we just got to know people and the area a little bit.
 This morning a member up in the other branch hooked us up so that we could go to one of the resorts for free and play racquetball. It was tons of fun! Why have I never played that before?? Anyways that’s the update of life here on Aruba. We contacted this older couple who are very devout Catholics but they were the nicest people in the world! I contacted them in my broken half Aruba half Bonaire Papiamento and they let us in and luckily they knew Spanish as well. They were super nice and kept telling us what a good work we are doing and we talked about the importance of the Gospel in our lives for almost an hour! Then she gave us chocolate milk and cookies so I absolutely love her (funny how food can make fall in love so easily) and she invited us back tomorrow for dinner! So now I have a grandma in Aruba and we also gave them a pamphlet about the restoration so that we could talk about that with them during dinner.
 At first when I came out to the islands I was kinda bummed because it went to from having 30-40 lessons a week to about 4 or 5 lessons a week, but the quality of lessons is so much better and it really helps you make that extra effort to keep the spirit with you during the day. Anyways sorry this is a novel but life here on Aruba is pretty nice :)
Serving in Paradise!

Elder Harsh

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