Monday, February 11, 2013

Watch Out For The Amazon!

Feb 11, 2013
What up my family! So! This week was good. Went by really fast despite some difficulties haha. So in the beginning of the week I went on a division in our neighbor area called Mauazinho. It´s right in the middle of the jungle, after mauazinho its just Amazon as far as the eye can see! So I was with an Elder that didn´t speak any English at all so it was a really good time for me to practice my portugese! Even though he didn´t talk much I made him talk haha. It was cool to walk around there and teach people in little houses that were hanging over the river.  But in divisions normally you stay the night in that area so i slept in the Mauazinho house and the next morning I woke up with a rash over my entire body! That was a grand ol time having Brazilians touch my face and arms saying i had Dengue even though I didn´t have a fever or a headache. No worries it wasn´t Dengue, just a weird rash......haha. I came back to my area! So another wierd/sad thing happened with one of our investigators. So a few weeks ago Elder Básilio baptized a girl named. She was super awesome and attended church and everything. But she called Elder Basílio one day and said she had been talking to her parents (Jehovas witnesses.....they´re a lil difficult) and she wanted to talk. So we met her at the chapel and she gave back her Book of Mormon, all the pamphlets Basílio had given her and wanted to talk the Bishop to cancel her Baptism. We were like WHAT? WHY? She said shed had dreams that members of the church were chanting around a fire wearing hooded cloakes and sacrificing things, then tried to kill her. Sooooooooooo we talked to her a little but respected her decision. Then she told us its not to late to join the Jehovas Witnesses. We almost busted out laughing when she said that but oh well. I dont even know if you can negate your baptism haha. But later in the week we had a division with our zone leaders in our area. So we had 4 Elders working in out area. I went with Elder Robbey the american and Elder Basilio went with the Brazilian. We had a lot of sucsess. But later that day in an area called crespo we were walking down a street where an investigator´s house was. He ended up not being home but there were about 10 kids in the street playing a game in the road called taco ball. Its basically like Cricket! Elder robbey said lets go after the person wasnt home but i said wait! Look at all these little investigators running around! He laughed and said OK! So we watched them play for a sec then I said. Hey! We dont have this in the U.S! Can we play?? They said YEAH! Because kids here love americans. So we started playing.....IT WAS SO FUN!!! After we won ( >:) ) we asked if we could talk to them all for a second. So they all gathered around and we talked about Faith, Repentance, and Baptism for a little bit! Elder Robbey was SUPER good with the kids and we ended up getting all of their names and adresses! The spirit was just crazy strong teaching all those receptive little kids. It was just.....stupendous! We met a new investigator yesterday!  Shes 15 but really nice. Its kinda fun passing back and forth a notebook and it lets me practice my spelling in Portuguese! So also this week we had lunch at a members house, we had fish and maybe the best meat ive ever had in my life. Some kind of beef. Brazil definetly wins the planet on meats haha. But we were talking about fish and this member ended up telling us a pretty awesome story. So his cousin lived deeper in the amazon near the border of the amazon river. He was crossing a dangerous part of the river on his horse one day and was holding on to its neck. He ended up slipping off the horse and falling in the river! Guess what happened! He started to swim and a school of pirhanas started eating his legs, well you cant swim without legs very well so.....they found half of his body 2 days later down the river with some pirhanas that were inside him still...mmmmmmmmmmmmm. Then he showed us on his hand where he´d been bitten and 3 places on his legs where a sting ray had stung him! Moral of the story, dont mess with the amazon river! So all this week and last is carnival. It´s pretty crazy. It mostly just about 20 people piled in the back or riding on top of cars holding on to the sunroof blasting music. We had to veer around a huge party yesterday where the road was blocked off. We could have walked through but thought it was probly better to take the long way haha. Well thats all for now folks! Miss and love everyone. If anyone has money to spare.......send me a package :))

Tchau!!! --Elder Green

I Miss The Mountains!

February 4th, 2013
. SO! This week the weather was AWESOME. Theres two kinds of weather here, insanley hot and humid. Or just raining and super humid but kinda hot. Its been really really cloudy all week here so we´ve taught almost every lesson completley wet. But i dont mind being wet :) Its kind of nice getting out of the sun! We taught family this week and it was just a mom and 6 kids. It was cool. When we were leaving they had an old freezer sitting outside of their house and the kids opened it and jumped in! They had turned it into a tiny pool! It was one of those freezers that you just open and its like a big ol box. One old couple we taught on that same road had a HUGE turtle shell under their little overhang on their porch, it was as big as my chest haha! Sorry mom no pics of that, didnt have my camera :( I taught my english class and only a few people showed up, it was fun though! We were all laughing the whole time and I feel like they learned a lot. Did i ever tell you there are a ton of vultures here? They are sooooooo ugly but really cool looking when their flying. Theres always like a flock of them in the air. They get super super high in the sky though and its way cool to see 20 or 30 of them flying around in circles in the sky. Ok so we were in an area called crespo knocking on doors and we ended up almost knocking on a catholic meeting in a house. Probably 50 people there. The door was cracked open so we could see. After much debating i finally convinced Basílio to knock with me because it wasnt a church! So we did......we didn´t get in....but almost! It was worth a try haha. SO something happened this week it was SO SAD!! So like ive said before there are cats and dogs everywhere here. We found a kitten in the middle of a bunch of trash on the street. Probly a week old. It still had the umbilical chord attached. We looked everywhere for its mom but couldnt find her. We walked around and asked people if they wanted a kitten but no one would take her :((((( because theres so many around here if people want one they can just pick one up and train it. So we had to put it back where we found it and hoped it had a mom somewhere. SO sad. If it wasnt a rule to not have pets i would have kept it. Anyways that was sad. So speaking of the super bowl theres some members here including the bishop that want me to ´train´them about  ``futebal americano`` haha so im teaching them a lil about the rules and the teams. Also we went to Mauazinho for some baptismal interviews for guys in our district. Mauazinho is super jungly area right by the meeting of the waters. That area is really cool, ill bring my camera next time i go there. But we had to cross a really really realy sketchy brige that was just 2 or 3 planks like 15 feet in the the very end i ended up falling through the bridge but wasnt hurt haha. Still scared the crap out of me. The house we went to was right next to the river and the Elder that was there, Elder gray said he had eaten aligator and snake there last time and next time we came he´d ask the family he baptized that fed him that if hed kill an aligator and cook it for me :) so my hopes are up for that!!!!   So also in my area there are a bunch of small trucks, and medium ones. No big ones because the roads are so small. But most of the trucks have bed covers on them and in the bed of the truck tons of people have MASSIVE sound systems. Like on saturday the loudest one ive heard drove by Basílio and i and set off 3 car alarms. It was so loud haha. But theres music here called Brasilian Funke, apparently its super super bad music with a beat kind of like rap and dubstep but a different at the same time. I cant understand what their saying though but Basílio hates it.  Elder Basílio is a master teacher, im learning a lot from him. He´s also the only member in his family, so thats cool. Did I ever say we dont knock here just clap? Because poeple have gates with spikes around all their houses so we cant get to the door. So we clap! I clap usually cause I have big hands and it´s louder. Carnival also started this week so i think starting wednesday we have to go back to our houses a couple of hours early. Sunday we saw a lil big of it. Its basically just a bunch of beer Funke and other bad music and girls wearing less than they usually do here! Tons of cars lined up on the roads going for downtown Manaus with the trucks all blasting their sound systems trying to outdo eachother I think haha. Well thats all i got for this week! Tchau!
Elder Green

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

No Blueberries for me!

Hey! It´s p-day! WHOOP! Ok so I had my first fruit right off of a tree the other day. DELISH. It was called carumbola, No I have no idea if that’s the right spelling. It’s super super good though. My next goal is to find a mango tree. The mango juice here is unbelievable. I had a mango off a tree in sao paulo but I want to see if their better here. This week was not as exciting as last week. Maybe it’s just because I´m getting used to how crazy this mission is haha. A dog tried to bite me yesterday, I beat him down with my book of Mormon though and he ran off yelping, no worries about them dogs. I think he told his friends because i haven’t had any problems since then :)). I talked about the dogs, rats and cats right? They really are EVERYWHERE. I saw a family of 4 dogs the other day sleeping on the sidewalk. It was cute they were all cuddling and stuff. awwwwwwww! There’s also 10,000 ants every square foot here. We have a small nation of em in our trash can. Nothing we can do to get rid of them. The mosquitos were getting revenge for their fallen brethren this week I think. I had 10 on each leg the other day haha. They are NOT normal mosquitos. They bite through my dress pants, and garments underneath. Blew my mind when I first realized they were doing that.
I’m officially the ward piano player. No one in the ward plays so it’s just me struggling to keep up on the lil electric one they have. I’m also going to start teaching an English class on Wednesday nights! I’m excited because it’s a good thing to invite investigators to and strengthen my relationship with the ward. Haha dad. The bishop here LOVES the walking dead. It just made me think of you, him and his son asks me about tv series all the time and if I’ve ever watched them. The bishop is WAY awesome. He has such an awesome sense of humor. Did I ever say there are sand/grass/futsol arenas EVERYWHERE here? Well there are. The Brazilians love their soccer. We aren’t allowed to play soccer though so I don´t have to worry about embarrassing myself. BUT we can play basketball, so that’s AWESOME! Ok so crazy story for the week. We were walking down a hill one day (by the way there are 1,0000000 super steep hills in my area) and this guy far away was walking toward us eating popcorn. He was probably 40 or so and yelled ´´Élderes!´´ We said Oi! And went and talked to him. He just started going OFF about deep doctrine crap. He was using a ton of weird words that i had no idea what they were. He literally talked for 45 minutes straight about Weird stuff. We found out after a little while that he´s a preacher for the protestant church. So we eventually said. Look, we gotta go. He asked if he could leave us with a prayer and we said sure! He said ok and KNELT down in the middle of the road and started praying FOR 10 MINUTES!!! Me and Elder Basìlio just looked at each other in the middle of the prayer.   So something else kind of ruined my week......THEY DONT HAVE BLUEBERRY PANCAKES HERE. I was so sad. Mom no need to waste weight and send me those. I was just a lil sad (sniffle). I’m sure you´ve already heard but 233 people died in a club in Rio Grande do Sul. Everyone is talking about it. Really, really sad. People here are really giving. Whenever you need water you can go to any house and ask for some. Maybe it’s because they know you’ll die here if you don’t get water but still. Kinda cool. I went on splits this week into another area with an Elder. It was fun! The area he was in had a lot more Favelas than mine. We taught this 15 year old girl and it was crazy spiritual. Ok so the question, I still have socks and because everyone takes their shoes off when they walk in their floors are clean. YES. I’m drinking plenty. People here are giving. You can go to any house and ask for water and they’ll give you some. All the water people drink is filtered. They have areas where you can fill up on of those big blue jugs for 60 cents. That’s what we drink. Ya just can’t drink the tap. I drink extra though because my shirts are completely drenched in sweat by the end of the day.  I’ll take more pics next week. Send ME some! Freak! You can just upload them and send them to my email even!  Please send lots of pics and videos back with the card. We aren’t supposed to carry our cameras around with us 1 for safety and 2 so we don’t look like tourists. I’m trying to get more though. I still have an ingrown toenail and was sick all day yesterday. Sucked walking around with the flu like that. But it’s cleared up a ton today. No I didn’t have a fever. Yeah I already met Elder Page the first day. He’s way cool and his Portuguese is wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy good. We talked about alpine for a lil then I had to run. Right now were just trying to find a bunch of new investigators. So lots of walking and knocking right now. But the mission is really really really hard. Its is so difficult sometimes to just walk up a hill or get up in the morning because all I want to do is sleep. It is 1,000 times different from the MTC. Everyone always told me it would be hard, but you just don’t know until you´re here! From what I´ve seen if you´re not 100% committed and obedient you won’t make it! I couldn´t do this if I wasn´t being obedient. I’ve never been so tired, stressed, frustrated, happy, peaceful, and just content in my whole life. The mission is tough, especially where I´m at. But it’s so worth it :)  I think that’s all I got for now! Tchau!
---Elder Green
 GPS=  S 03(degree sign)08.339´
            W 059(degree sign)59.721

Monday, January 21, 2013


January 21, 2013
IT´S HOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I just thought I´d open with that :). Its really hot here.....haha. BUT I actually dont mind it all that much! AAAnnnnd apparently it´s winter here. I was dying yesterday and my comp said just wait, we have missionaries pass out on a regular basis because it´s so hot in the summer haha. Speaking of my comp his name is Elder Basìlio. Yep! I got´s me a Brazilian companion! He´s way awesome though. He´s the district leader and has a real talent for teaching. We get along great and he loves english and wants to learn really bad. His dream is to go to a general conference live in Utah and understand everything haha! Kinda cool. My areas name is Lagoa Verde. YEP Green Lake in english. Its in the middle of the city so I´m not in the middle of nowhere but still in the jungle. The Amazon is GINORMOUS!   DAD THANK YOU FOR THE NBA STANDINGS IVE BEEN WONDERING FOR 3 MONTHS. Haha.......ANYways. My area has 1,000 hills. Super steep and they're everywhere. I´ve only found a few roads that are level for more than 20 feet haha. .There are 10,000 cats and dogs walking in the streets. Rat´s too, lots of dogs and cats and rats! Its the whole dang pet circle of life. I´ve seen some pretty SICK dog fights though. They just poo and pee in the middle of the road too haha. They other day we were walking down some alleys to talk to a 16 year old named Gabriela that showed a lil bit of interest. While we were talking to her outside her house this little girl came running around. Anyas age at least, She was barefoot and had on a purple shirt that was purple near the top but faded into black/brown near the bottom. She was so freaking adorable. The accent here is impossible to understand. My comp is from são paulo and he said it took HIM a while to get what people were saying. (sigh) I got so frustrated my second day. I literally had no idea what was going on during the lesson. I wanted to scream. Gah just thinking about it makes me frustrated. I can understand people from São Paulo fine. But here its just so different. They understand me, I just don´t understand them. BUT. I´m the freaking bomb at charades now so thats a plus :)) But yeah super hot, and we walk everywhere. I lost 11 pounds in 3 days if that says anything haha.... I get a lot of stares when I walk around because im 1 1/2 feet taller than everyone!  Every house I go into that has a floor, (so i need to take my shoes off), literally every person yells whaaaaaaa????? When i take my shoes off and picks them up and looks and them. They just laugh and laugh and laugh after I tell them their mine haha. So the food here is wayyyyyy good. They have crazy fruits that they only have here that i wont even attempt to spell but they are good. They also have this Amazonian nut, thats only in the Amazon and its basically a giant almond. Inside a really hard shell so it´s tough to get out but its worth it. SO good. I haven´t had a coconut yet but i want to. Bananas are UNREAL. Mangos.....oh my gosh....mana from heaven greatest thing ever. Ok so there are so many bugs here. Mosquitos galore. SO many. I hate them. When i see one, I ATTACK. Not just try, I ATTACK. Like my life depends on it. I´ve kind of made a game out of killing them in cool ways. 
Like in between my legs or something its SUPER fun :) but yeah i get bitten all the time. Coolest animal I´ve seen is a parrot, like I said I'm in the city.  Ok so NOW is the best part. We met a guy named Alex on Thursday, baptized him yesterday..........yeah SO CRAZY. MY FIRST BAPTISM! He was crazy receptive and wants to serve a mission now. He´s only 17! So awesome. His family wants to hear about the gospel now too he said. He doesn´t live in our area he was just visiting his cousin but he leaves this week and wanted only us to baptize him, so our mission pres gave the ok and we did! It was so awesome. I didn´t do the actual baptism, another Elder (elder rex) did because we had alot of baptisms and had to get them done quick. SO cool :)
 I MISS EVERYONE!!!!!!!  I always see the cutest little girls here so i think of anya then of the fam. (sigh) Being in the field has tripled my missing because I don´t have all my great district anymore to have fun with!  ILL HAVE A NEPHEW IN 6 WEEKS. YES!!! Send 480 pictures when he comes ok? ok.
Until Next week, Love you all!
Elder Green

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Merry Christmas!

December 25th

Hey family!!!
Ok so MOM. I LOVED ALL THE PRESENTS ESPECIALLY THE BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you mom and kristin. All the pics are unbelievable. And those extra pics of christ you sent to me laminated that there were doubles of I gave to some of the guys in my districts the doubles. They all love that picture of Christ since they saw my big one by liz lemon. AWESOME. And I loved every single tie. Which is kind of amazing becuase I am pretty darn picky about my ties! Really though I loved them all. Batman shirt=awesome. Jazz shorts=awsome. ALL THE PICS!!!!! I was wanting pics so bad. Thank you so much. Ok so first Christmas eve. It was just normal shedule here until like 630 or so. Then we had choir practice for a while (everyone here is required to participate in choir, kinda dumb becuase we are only singing to 6 people on the stand then haha) But after choir practice we had a musical devotional type of a thing. It was crazy spiritual. Really awesome. OH and before all that we had dinner. Mom.....the dinner on Christmas eve was the WORST one we have had tasted like dust and old people. So gross. BUT I stayed positive! I just wanted you to know I was really missing your Chirstmas Eve dinner hehe :) THEN we went to bed early but before bed they had ice cream and brownies out for us! SO yummy. And around 10 we heard bells outside our hallway and some of the district presidents and the presidents wife came around and gave us cookies and a lil bag of heaven. They all had santa hats on and were going room by room giving the bags to the elders! Awesome right?? I am loving it here. But at the same time Im sort of sick of it and ready to get out in the field! Makes sense right? Anywho, we stayed up a little late because they LET US SLEEP IN TODAY!!!! WHOOP!!!! But we got about the same amount of sleep anyways because here instead of 4th of July or New Years Fireworks they go crazy with fireworks on Christmas. Starting at midnight of christmas eve.....and the rest of the night....haha. It was hard to sleep! But the fireworks here are just like really loud bombs. Sounds like a war. They don't shoot into the air haha! Some do but 90% just are super loud!!! So we all woke up and I immedietly opened my few things OF COURSE. And no i didn't open a single one before then. Even though I wanted to :). Christmas day, rather today we woke up LATE (awesome) and had breakfast downstairs. Nothing special but I wasn't hungry anyways with all the candy we've been eating. Then we had a member of the 70 here in the morning and he spoke, hes the president of the Brazil area, President Costa. It was a WAY good talk. Ill include details in the next letter. Then we went up and changed and pretty much the rest of the day we can do whatever we want in p-day clothes until 7 and then we have another devotional! They have games going on all day like PING PONG (yes i freaked when i found out), gym is open all day so bball and volleyball all day if we want to. Paper air plane contests, they are showing the otherside of heaven too which is SWEET. I'll probably go watch that after this :) Oh mom so i busted out the fruit leather yesterday and shared everyone LOVED it. Especially Irmão Victor, he's obsessed with it hahaha. I loved getting a letter finally in my box from you!!! I havn't gotten a letter from anyone in 3 weeks....haha. Poopy! I got bunches in Provo! Oh welllllllllll. Mom could you send me Invictus poem and The poem about the road not taken by Robert Frost? those are my favorite poems and I want to add them to the book. We had a testimony meeting with just our District on Christmas Eve too. I think that may be probably one of the strongest places I've ever felt the spirit. I think It's because I love my district. Alll of them. WE ALL make each other laugh so much! I could be best friends with any of them! It's awesome haha! Well i gotta run. MOM AND DAD: Your Christmas present is taped under the Piano, Merry Christmas :) love and miss you all soooooo much! Thanks again for the stuff. Best Christmas a different way :) Its equal to the best lets just say :) Tchau Tchau!!!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Wrecks and Waterfalls

Hey Family!
So. This week has been pretty darn good.  Erica sang in the tuesday Devotional with Sister Caldwell, they did wayyyyyyyyyy good!  I don't exactly remember what song it was, but a bunch of people were talking about how awesome it was.  Because it WAS awesome.  Oh, I got New Roommates!!  WHOOP!  One is from Brazil & one is from Argentina.  They are way cool & seem pretty nice!  It's good though, they have been helping a little bit with the language.  The Brazillian had THE thickest accent EVER & talks sooooo fast.  He's pretty hard to understand and the kid from Argentina is nice.  He is 5 foot nothing though.  My shoes are literally twice his size haha!  I heard about the Connecticut shootings.  Sad.  We had a good talk about that kind of stuff in our district so that was good too.  Elder Wilson got a fever of 102 earlier in the week, that was pretty exciting......sad.........but exciting haha.  He felt better the next day though.  My teachers are Iramo Ramalio & Irmao Victor.  Ramalio is a shyer guy but we make him laugh  a lot.  He knows a crapload of stuff about English/Portugese structure.  I've learned more about English here in a month that I did in all 3 years of highschool!  Sad but true.  We all really like Piamalio though.  He's a good teacher.  Irmao Victor is...wierd!  I can't decide if I like him or not.  We all agreed he made the worst first impression ever but after that he's actualy pretty funny.  Like the other day he told us the story about how he lost his license.  He said he was driving on the freeway (drivers here are INSANE by the way) & he saw in his rear view a guy swerving all over the road, obviously drunk.  So Irmao Victor said, "I'm going to save people today."  He slowed down until the drunk driver came next to him & he slammed his car into the driver so he rammed into the side wall & stopped.  The police came & the guy was drunk.  But they caught Victor on camera doing it so they took away his license!  See, like I said Crazy?  Or Funny?  We're still deciding.  Both our teachers were bragging about going to se the Hobbit on Friday & how it was the best movie they've ever seen.  Oddly enough, I don't really care!  Yay!  I thought I would at first but nope!  Erica's teacher, Irmao Costa is the BOMB.  One of the nicest people in the world!  Really though.  We both love him.  He's way spiritual & SO nice.  Erica & Sister Caldwell get along really great it seems like.  This week Sao Paulo's team from Corinthians beat Chelsea in a massive tournament, world tournament in Japan.  Fireworks went off non stop for 2 days.  Starting at 6:02 a.m. on Sunday!  It was crazy.  We saw a car out our window with like 12 people in it & Corinth flags just hanging out their windows.  It sounded like a war outside, b/c the fireworks are just loud bangs.  Soooo we'd have fake gun battles all day here haha.  I can't wait to actually teach real investigators.  I feel like I would learn the language 10x faster in the field.  I'm crazy jealous of all the Elders going out when their MTC time is shortened!  Ok so as you know we don't get to call on Christmas, BUT we email.  All of us.  Our district is scheduled for the afternoon.  So look for it then.  I said bye to Erica last night :(.  She left at 4:30 a.m.  It was pretty....darn rough.  I'm really missing everyone.  It all kind of came down on me how much I miss everyone haha!  Anyways!  Before I get all choked up, I talked to an Elder from Manaus down the hall & asked him what his favorite part about Manaus is.  he paused & said "The Waterfalls!"  I was surprised!  I didn't even know they had any there!  Whoop!  Waterfall baptism! Haha.  The weather here is AWESOME!  Has been around 80 all week & rains every other day here & I do so love the rain! :)  Still studying charity this week.  I'm loving it.  It's crazy how deep you can get on one topic.  I'll probably just study it for the rest of my mission!  The Christmas program sounds pretty GOOD here!  I'll tell you more about that next week.  on Christmas day..... when I email you :)  Tchau!  That's all I have to write, gotta run errands.  Love my family!
Love Always
Elder Green