28 December 2009
Okay. One thing I learned today: There is no right to privacy in El Salvador. Moroni Perez has his assistants sift through our letters, and yours, through mylds mail. If there is something you need to say only to me, you know my other account. I'm a full blooded advocate of the constitution, so I'm a little pissed right now that he would do that, and not respect us. I guess he has the right here, after all there are no laws here.
Anyway, Christmas was spent in Costa Del Sol, with a member. We drank coconut juice, and walked the beach, rode bikes, and hiked up to an old Jewish church. I hope you got the pictures of it.
The ward had a huge Christmas party.
Okay, funny story: I went on splits with Elder Guaranda. He's probably one of the stangest kids I know, but he's easy to get along with. The first lesson he fell asleep, while I was talking, and then in the second house also. In the second house- he fell asleep, and the lady kept talking to me. She was preaching about her Lutheran faith, and I didn't want to contend, so I just listened, and tried to understand the language. I didn't say hardly anything the whole time, because of my limited spanish. Finally Elder Gauranda woke up. First thing he says is "now, will you pray to know what we've taught you is true? It is important for you to decide for yourself." And then we left. I was laughing at that, but I can't believe the kid. The next thing is even worse: We started tracting. We could see the lady in her house, we knock and say hi, and she goes into a different room, and yells that nobody is home. E. Guaranda says "What?, speak up!"--so she repeats it. Then Elder Guaranda turns to me, and says "sorry" and explains that nobody is in the house right now, and so he moved to the next door. He was completely serious, so I was way confused. Looking back on it, it's sad, but I can't believe the kid--everything here makes me laugh. It's all ridiculous.
So we've painted a couple of houses while I've been here. They water down their paint, because they are too poor to buy another can. It's like painting brick with watercolors---it just doesn't work.
I feel so unaccomplished, because these houses that we finish all look like projects out of the Barney bag. But the people are thrilled, so I guess that's all that counts.
So I learned one thing. We were going to visit a family, and there was a friend in the house. She was Lutheran, and a strong advocate of her faith. She attacked the Book of Mormon, and Elder Gomez started to back it up with scriptures from the bible. I realized that the spirit of contention has to be with two people---it has to be a fight, a struggle. I sat back and watched, when I realized what was happening. Contention is two way. Both people have to have the spirit of contention. I've decided that if it ever happens to me--if they attack--I'll just say, well you know, this is what I believe, and this is right for me. I've learned to just be submissive.
So the girls her are so funny. We'll be walking a neighborhood, and stop somewhere, and the girls will stare, and fix their hair, and get all antsy. It's funny to be on the outside for once.
People always call me greengo, but the other day, someone yelled "ALASKA"---I guess word is getting around.
No, we don't have a mamasita to babysit us. We just go to all the members for their support.
So, the president is really serious about these gangs. He's using military force now. Bigger weapons, more guns. The capital is worse, everything is amplified there. The gangs have taken control of most of the police force. That's why nobody calls the police. If there is a problem, and they call the police, the gang will show up at their door, and take care of them. It's not that there is no law, it's just that it is not enforced, and everyone is scared.
Anyway, time to log off. See ya