Monday, March 29, 2010

Week 16 in El Salvador


Yah, you’re right, I wasn’t very proud of the house, but it was what they wanted. The funny thing is that the Dad of this family works construction, and he was the overseer of this project. I took a second look at the measurements and everything is crooked. I was just there helping them dig and nail stuff, but yah, most all the houses look like that, unless they are the upper class folks.

Elder Dennis is doing fine. He just didn’t get to email last week, because they were updating accounts, and he ran out of time. That day, we had our P-day in Ilobasco, a city a little north of the capital. Elder Dennis was feeling good, and we were bored of the little zoo that we went to as a zone, so me and Elder Dennis went off on our own. We decided to hitchhike all the way back from Ilobasco to Zacatecoluca, and we made it. We got 6 different rides, and had to pass through 5 cities, we stopped at a telepizza for lunch (ask Kendra if she remembers telepizza from Spain---anyways it’s better here)---in the end, it only took us two hours to get back to Zacate, which is faster than a bus ride.

My companion’s back is fine too, but one night when we decided to sleep on the roof, it got cold, for here, and my companion’s asthma acted up again.

Ok, so if you want to know more about the gangs, there is a documentary I am going to buy when I get back, but you should see it. It’s called La Vida Loca, and there are films 1,2,and 3. It might be in Spanish, but I’m not sure yet.

We are really close to this family that we helped build the house. We go over there almost everyday. Either to talk, help build the house, or play soccer with the family. The mom is saying that nobody has every done this much for them before.

We went to a museum and zoo the other week for p-day, and the museum had all this stuff from the United States, along with swords (probably the same ones they sell in the Comic Shop)--all the artifacts in this museum had the most absurd explanations---the sword section and labels for all the famous people that used them through out history, but then on the blade of the sword was “made in china”---they also had artifacts they claimed were ancient, from Peru---but the artifacts were look-alikes with “Peru” in golden letters. I guess it’s anything to get money here.


Monday, March 22, 2010

The house we built

 The house that we built. It still needs some work...but so do the rest of the houses in the neighborhood. The toilet I was building was a temporary one, suppose to last for one year, while they construct a pila with a faucet, and maybe get a better outhouse. It's pretty sweet though, 'cause they live right next to a soccer field. We are gonna wake up thisssaturday at 5:oo a.m. to go play soccer with them.

Our house

The small brick house is the thing I'm living in right now. Nice and cozy. 600 degrees under the roof.

Elder Dennis' ankle

Elder Dennis sprained his ankle today. We were running from car to car getting rides. But in the end, we made it to Ilobasko without spending a dime. All 8 missionaries inside the same car.

Week 15 in El Salvador

This week we had another multizone meeting, and the doctor came over who is over all of Central America checking missionaries. He could only speak English, and they had a Latino translate for him. I am surprised how much is lost in translation, so his speech had a completely different effect in Spanish. Also in the multizone, the President warned us of the increasing gang danger. He wants us to take special precautions. They aren’t telling us what is going on in the capital.

My companion had his back sprain. He’s going to the capital for today with Elder Monzon for a CT scan. The doctor came over to the house the other night, gave him a message, and a shot of morphine. I thought he was crazy, but he did figure one good thing out. He looked at my companion’s asthma spray, and noticed he was taking steroids (which the doctors in San Salvador prescribed). We threw the bottle away. I guess that explains his hyperactivity.

Elder Dennis sprained his ankle today. We were running from car to car getting rides. But in the end, we made it to Ilobasko without spending a dime. All 8 missionaries inside the same car.


Monday, March 15, 2010

Me in the toilet...

We helped a family start building their house. My job, of course, was digging the toilet. That’s me in the hole, with my ice pick, little bucket and knife. I get so sweaty here. The only part of my clothes that was dry was where my pants touched my shoes.

The fun part of work....

My companion is in front, and the companion of Elder Dennis (Elder Monzon) riding in back. It’s the cart we use to bring all the materials up the hill. The first day all four of us worked from 7 in the morning until 2 in the afternoon. We’ve been helping them off and on since then.

Building a house

This is another picture of starting the house. We dug holes to put down the main pillars for the house. This is for the Albarado family (the same family as little Margarita--the photo with the dyed chicks). We got all 8 pillars put up the first day working with them. They are gonna live right next to a soccer field, so that will be cool.

Week 14 in El Salvador

I’m doing a little better this week. The sickness left for most of the days, except yesterday. It kind of goes through cycles. I have the names of my new friends that held a party in my stomach the other week---entamoeba histolytica---entomoeba coli---and Endolimax nana. [Herb says the first causes bloody diarrhea, the second is another amoeba, the last is a type of tapeworm--1/2 inch to 1 inch long.] After the medicine I felt better for the most part,---But have you ever seen the movie Alien? Or Alien vs. Predator?---that’s the best way to describe what it felt like after taking the medicine.---just like nails in my stomach. The report also said that I was positive for eggs, and mucus. The medicine I took should have destroyed it. I went in for a second exam on Thursday. By the way, I love pooping in a Gerber baby bottle. The second report came back negative. I still have occasional stomach aches. I heard that the medicine I took is a little hard on my body too.

On Tuesday I went and started knocking doors in a poorer part of town, the outskirts of Anavea 2. I was knocking doors, looking for a reference, and I knocked on this one door. The door was a fiberglass sheet about ten feet high, and walls on both sides made of old wood, and other stuff to patch up the holes. So I knock on the door, and the first thing I see is my companion back off behind me, put his hands to the side, and just looking really nervous. I looked up at the door to see what he was looking at---a very built man, shirtless, bald, tattoos down his head and his back (here it is a real hassle to get tattoos, so it is just the gangs usually)---anyway, the guy had an expression, a mix between nervous and pissed off, and he had a 9mm handgun in his hand hanging over the wall. My companion just froze, so I turned up to look at him again and said, “hey man, we were just gonna invite ya to church.” We left. He put the gun back on the other side of the wall, and watched us walk away.

On Wednesday, I went on splits with an adult (without knowing who he was at first); his name is Javier Monistel, from Costa Rica. When splits ended, another adult talked to me. He asked “hey, you were just training the future mission president of Nicaragua. How do you feel?”

I went on divisions with Elder Dennis, for a two-day division. We rocked it, and later slept on his roof. I’ve been on divisions almost every day this week.

That’s good that you got the package. I want you to do one thing with the memory card though---make two copies of the memory, afterward I want pictures of friends and family, videos, whatever...let people use the camera for a couple weeks, passing it around. I want to see how everyone is doing.

So the word paranguitirimicaro is like a tongue twister. Its like saying super-kala-fragilistic-expiali-dotious in English, but it is just a word from a larger rhyme (the one my companion busted out in the video).


Monday, March 8, 2010

Week 13 in El Salvador

Hey, yah I heard that you called the mission. Sister Perez freaked out, and now the whole mission knows that I am Elder Parasito. They told me to tell you that I am feeling better, but I don’t know who told them that. This week I was exhausted, but I am on medication. My rash has left. I don’t feel as much pain, but I am just tired all the time, and have still had migraines every day this week. I don’t have the exam with me, and I don’t know if they told you, but I have a stomach infection of three different classes of parasites. The only name I recognized was E. Coli, and the others had names just as started with an E (but it was different) and the smaller name was nani. Sorry I don’t have the papers right now.

Today I am feeling good, and this Tuesday I felt ok. I crashed last night, and just went to bed after we got home. I slept really well, and in the morning I woke up to my companion jumping on the bed “IT’S P-DAY!”----I seriously didn’t know where I was for a moment, or who he was. I thought I was in Montana or Dillingham for a minute, and then it all came back to me.

Yah, so Elder Dennis is in our little district of four. On Wednesday I went on splits with him. His Spanish is doing way better than mine was at his point.

I don’t think you guys need to worry so much about my sickness. I’ve been through worse, and I can get through this one too. As soon as I said I was going to work harder this change, is when I got sick. I figured there was gonna be a little hill to climb. It’s just like Matt Shawcroft says when we go snow machining---“boys, you ain’t havin’ fun unless you’re getting stuck every now and then.” I can’t be a missionary in El Salvador without dealing with some little bumps. I wanted an adventure. Besides, the scriptures say not to worry, because worrying just makes things worse--Matthew 6:34, that’s good enough for me. I know I’ll be fine.

As for this week, some interesting things have been happening. On Tuesday, we spent the day in the colony of La Miramar. We left late that night, and the next time that week when we came to visit Miramar, a sister came out to us, a little worried. She was having trouble believing we were ok. She told us a story of what happened Tuesday night; around the time we were leaving. I guess there was some kind of little fight, and someone got shot at the bus top where we had just left. I am surprised the violence spreads this far out from the capital. My companion has stories from when he was in the capital, the things he saw, but they probably shouldn’t be shared.

So when Sister Perez freaked out, she was wondering what I was eating. Just the normal stuff. But I guess we are supposed to have a special cook, to prepare our meals in this area. Sister Perez flipped out when we heard that we didn’t have a cook, and were just eating at members’ houses. Now I eat at the Papusaria that the Vermudez family owns.

I am on medication right now---I don’t remember how to spell the names, but one its like ciprofloxacin and the other is zelnidacol (I think that’s it). The nurse hasn’t told me anything; just “you have a stomach infection.” So I am still clueless as to what this is. I am also taking Motrin and those migraine meds you gave me. I’m feeling good right now, but I’ll see how later goes.


Monday, March 1, 2010

Margarita and painted chicks

This is little Margarita. She is the daughter of a family we are visiting. I wanted to show you what I was telling you about at new years---they paint their baby chickens Easter colors. I think its the coolest thing, especially when their are a bunch of them, and all different colors. My favorites are the green and pink ones, but they do bright yellow, and blue also.

Week 12 in El Salvador



Ha-ha I’ve been sick this week, to the point that I don’t remember what went on. I’m still working though, but my sicknesses have grown worse. Tuesday and Wednesday I had terrible stomach pains. I’ve had migraines every day this week, to the point that sometimes it is difficult to see. It’s left me weak, and dizzy. I’ve also developed another full body rash, its more splotchy than the one before, very red, and itchy. People are thinking I have anemia because of how weak I am, so they’ve fed me like 4 to 5 meals a day. Sister Perez said I probably have parasites, so I go in for an exam today. I think it is simpler than what people think it is though. The rash for all I know could be prickly-heat, along with mild heat exhaustion. I probably do have parasites though.

Changes were today. I’m still with my same companion. The people at church were thrilled when they heard that we weren’t leaving. I’ve become the best friend to everyone under age 6 in the church. I tend to talk to the niños more than the adults--life is more simple.

Mom--ha-ha guess what, you are gonna laugh---I’ve given in--I am becoming organized now.

As for your other comment---I have been drawing every day. Even my daily planner is littered with sketches, and thumbnails for future paintings. My journal is becoming more sketches, less writing. I’m using OFF bug spray to do temporary graffiti inside and outside the house. I still can’t stop.

I don’t remember if I told you this last week, but areas have been closed off to us because of increasing danger. Just last night, a lady was begging us to walk her to her house, because it was past dark, and she was alone.

To your questions---we sleep in hammocks depending on the heat. Yes they are cooler, so I tend to sleep in mine every day. Our fan broke the other day, so I’m sweating my huevos off, and getting more bug bites. I’m tired of the little drive-by-shooting-mosquitoes, I still can’t squish them.

Your other question--No. the houses are not safe. With Elder Gomez, I have broken into our house 5 different times using different methods, and two different times at the house in San Juan. My keys disappeared on the bus, but it still makes no difference. My companion has another pair, but we could do without if it were necessary. The easiest method is taking apart the window, one pane at a time and pulling the latch with a stick, or mop handle. People usually don’t bother us though, so I’m not worried.

So the photo--this is little margarita. She is the daughter of a family we are visiting. I wanted to show you what I was telling you about at new years---they paint their baby chickens Easter colors. I think its the coolest thing, especially when their are a bunch of them, and all different colors. My favorites are the green and pink ones, but they do bright yellow, and blue also.

Your other question---no it is not a mission raccoon. A couple families we know have different pet raccoons. The one on the back of Elder Peña is a rather small one.

My companion turned 22 this week. I have videos of our cake fights at multiple houses. At one house, we got everyone involved, the whole family. The littlest kid couldn’t reach the cake in the center of the table, so he just took what was in his mouth, made a ball, and nailed his sister in the face. I got that on video too, and I’ll send the memory card when you return the other one (in the package I’m sending today). All is well, life I good.


Contact information

Corey’s contact information:

Pouch services through SLC. Letters can only be single sheet, tri-folded and taped shut (no envelopes.)

Elder Corey Day

El Salvador San Salvador East Mission

POB 30150

Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0150


Mission address: If sending packages, Corey says it’s safer to put Christian stickers on the front:

Elder Corey Day

El Salvador San Salvador East Mission

Centro Comercial 105 Local #204

Paseo General Escalon #105 Ave.Sur

San Salvador, San Salvador

El Salvador

You can also write him through (it's free!)