Monday, June 28, 2010

Santa Fe, NM Transfer 8 Week 1 -- The Good and the Bad

My dear family and friends,

Oh what a week it was. I hope you've got time, because this will probably turn out to be a novel.

Monday: My last p-day in Colorado. It started out with a phone call from Sister Wilkes (the sister who was being trained by the sister who went home last week) asking to talk to me. When I answered, she sounded like she was almost in tears, or trying to cover up that she was crying. She said, "Sister Good, what do I do if Sister Anderson won't get out of bed?" (Sister Anderson was in denial BIG TIME that she was going home and had told me that she wouldn't get out of bed on her last morning.) I was like "Oh boy. I have no idea." I told her that we were almost ready and would be there in 20 minutes (seeing as how we lived 20 minutes up the mountain). I had no clue what I was going to do when we got there, other than assess the situation and work from there. I go back into the bedroom, and was a little confused because I thought that Sister Anderson had the other bed than the one she was in, but I wasn't positive. I told her that I didn't think she was really serious when she said that she wouldn't get out of bed, and if there was anything we could do to get her up. Her answer to both was "Nope." Well, this went on for about 5 minutes when Sister Anderson jumps up and says, "Just kidding. I've been up all morning and am almost packed. I just wanted to see what you'd do." They were just getting back at me for the idea I had for the District Leader to call Sister Wilkes early and tell her that she was training. We spent the day cleaning and packing. I wasn't about to leave the apartment a mess for the elders who were moving in like it was when I found it. It was spotless by the time we finished... after staying up until 12:00 or later Monday night and getting back up at 6:00 Tuesday to finish it. We saved our hardest goodbyes for Monday... don't ask me why. I was so proud of myself last Monday because I hadn't cried yet. Yet, being the key word, because I was a blubbering mess by the time we headed home Monday night. On the way home, my mood was lightened a bit by a phone call from Sister Quick, one of the members in the ward who was dropping a package off to my family that day. She told me that her dog got to play with ours, and that Mom invited them for dinner. (BTW, she says I've got a pretty cool family. I have to agree ;) )

Tuesday: Like I said, I was up way late and early Tuesday. That left me a little on the unhappy side. But I did a good job at keeping a smile on my face. And I was even able to stay awake on the way from Cortez to Farmington (good thing, since I was driving) The transfer van got to Farmington early, which never happens! (Actually, it's probably better said that it got there on time, instead of late as always). It was a long ride down to Albuquerque. I wanted to sleep, but I can't sleep in the car. So I stayed awake. Other than the AP who was driving and the Elder in the front seat, I'm the only other one who stayed awake the whole 4 hours to the mission office. When we got there boy was it toasty! Right about 100 degrees, with no wind. Yuck. The APs loaded our luggage into our car, a tiny Toyota Corolla (I miss my truck!) and came and apologized because it is a horrible mess. By that point, I was like "Whatever." I'd already been told that the elders we were double transferring in behind had passed their cleaning inspections with flying colors, so I wasn't too worried about the state of the apartment, and I knew that they were good elders, so I wasn't worried about the state of the area book either. I could handle a messy car for a week. But, when we got to Santa Fe and found our apartment, it was even worse than the car! That didn't make me too happy, and then I saw the area book and started to cry (it didn't help that I was exhausted). It hadn't been updated in 2 transfers! For those of you who have served missions, you know how important an area book is, especially in terms of a double transfer. But we're working through that. We went and met our branch president, President Lopez, that night. He is great, and seems to be really willing to work with us.

Wednesday: We did a very quick blitz cleaning of the apartment to make it liveable until today (sanitizing the bathroom and washing 3 or 4 days worth of dirty dishes) and then had a long planning session to try to figure things out, which in case you're wondering, isn't so easy without an area book. Then we set out to try to find our way around and meet people. It's a good thing we've got a good map.

Thursday: We had District Meeting... in Espanola, about 45 minutes or an hour away. Our district is huge... 11 missionaries, I think. They were all grateful to have had a pianist transferred in though, not to mention sisters to keep them on key when singing they hymns. We spent the afternoon meeting more people and learning more about our area.

Friday: I found corn flour in the pantry at our apartment, so I decided to make tortillas for breakfast. For being my first time all by myself, they didn't turn out too bad! But I thought of a couple things I'd change the next time I make them. It was a long planning day, with a good chunk of time spent on the phone with the elder we were following to get information about the investigators and addresses, or at least directions of how to find them. We went out tracting. We also had a lovely New Mexican summer rain storm. I think I'll be seeing a lot more of those.

Saturday: When we went home for lunch, we were completely clueless of what we wanted. There was a can of soup in the pantry that had an alternate recipe for shepherd's pie on the back... and we had fake potatoes. Yes, I actually stooped to the level of making fake potatoes (but at least they were Idahoan!) I know, my family is probably cringing and saying "You did WHAT?!?" That evening we went and helped one of our investigators paint the house she and her family are moving into. She told us yesterday that her husband was amazed at what we were able to do in such a short period of time, especially since it wasn't the easiest place to work--above the stairs hanging over the banister upstairs and literally bending over backward to be able to paint the wall that is on the same side as the banister. It was great fun.

Sunday: It was our first week in the branch. It is tiny--this branch has more members than the Rama Coronado, but fewer people attend. That's sad. We need to change that. We were able to meet more people. And we finished the day off knocking doors, and finishing off our first trailer park. We have yet to run into someone who speaks English, and this was a good-sized trailer park. (We're told that Santa Fe has nearly 50% Hispanics).

Overall, I really like it here. It's a great area. We're slowly but surely learning our way around and getting to know people. I think things will be better by the end of the week.

Have a great week!

Hermana Good

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