Monday, November 25, 2013

My 3rd Comp Is Here


So the big news is that I have a new companion and NO, I did not have to ride the curvy road I threw up on before to go get him. I took Elder Mansilla to the bus stop and he boarded his first leg of his 2 day ride to Medellin were he will take a second bus to the coast. My new companion is Elder Muñoz and he came from an area close by so he just came on the bus too but his ride was pretty short. He is super chill. He was born and raised in Texas, but his dad is from Cali Colombia and his mom is from Argentina. He does not look look like a white boy at all but he is a gringo. It’s been fun having people guess where he is from. They think were are lying when we say he is from the U.S. He is an awesome guy and I know that it is going to be great having him here in Chinchina.

Well we had a super cool first week together.It has been raining a little bit but not bad. The only day we left our umbrellas at home though was the day we really needed them. We were contacting in a new area when all of a sudden it started pouring buckets on us. I saw a open door and ran to it and started contacting the house and when they saw it was just pouring rain they quickly ushered us into their home. After we had sat down they asked ´´So who are you guys, and why were out in the rain with out an umbrella or poncho?´´ They had no idea who we were or why we were there. They had never seen missionaries before but they still just let two people in need into their house. It was super great to see that type of kindness. We had a nice lesson and have plans to go back this week.

We also had an investigator come to church that had never come to church before. We bribed her friend, who she works with in the tienda, (yes same tienda as last week) with chocolate to bring her to church. It was great to have her there. I think she really liked it.

Also thanks for the money to buy food for thanksgiving. When I told my companion that my Mom had sent me money for both of us to pig out on Thanksgiving he was all for it. Last year his family only sent him a picture of all the food they ate. Not quite the same.

I hope you guys continue to have a great week and a great Thanksgiving.

Love Alec 

Last photo with Elder Mansilla.

We decided to play billiards for Elder Mansilla´s last day on our p-day.

Elder Muñoz is my new companion. Trust me he´s a gringo like me.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Teaching In A Tienda

Hey Guys,

So everyone has been asking me if we do anything for p-days in my new area since we did like nothing in our last one. We actually do. Normally we play football (soccer) with the young men and their non member friends in the mornings. After that the sisters and us buy food to cook in the house of a member that is a chief so its always super yummy and good. His wife is the lady that washes our clothes for us so they are kind of the ma and pa of us missionaries here in Chinchina. He actually asked if he could add my parents on Facebook. I told him he could but that they don’t know any spanish so it may not work out very well. :) Sometimes we go to Manizales for district/zone meetings then just hang out in the church there for a little talking with the other Zone. 

So I’m super excited for the holidays coming up. Christmas is supposed to be a really big deal here. I’ve seen them celebrate Halloween, Valentines Day (yep, its in September here), Colombian Independence Day and a bunch of other holidays that are not very important. They seem to have a holiday here almost ever two weeks if not sooner. All of them have been pretty tame, people playing instruments in the street, fireworks and the sort but apparently Christmas blows all other holidays out of the water. I have been told that the week before and after Christmas are full of parties, fireworks from almost every direction, people passed out on the side walk form to much beer, etc. I will have to wait and see if it is as crazy as they say. I’m planning on buying a small christmas tree for our house soon, something i can put on the counter in the kitchen or above the microwave. It should be fun. 

Maybe some of our apartment building will decorate too. Our building only has three doors on our floor so we have seen many of our neighbors. The lady right next to us shares an area that is a hole from the 4th floor to the first that has bars that we can hang clothes to dry, she is always dropping clothes on the the bars below, and since the is only access is from our apartment to retrieve the fallen clothes we are always passing her blouses to her. Interesting thing is that for safety missionary rules say that we cant contact or teach people in our building so we cant ever teach her or our other neighbors.

Funny thing happened this week on Tuesday. Elder Mansilla and I were teaching one of our in investigators in the tienda she worked in (its a little food place owned by a member so its totally chill). So while we were in the middle of the lesson the sister missionaries walked in to the tienda to buy a snack. When they saw that we were in a lesson in the tienda they were shocked. The looks on their faces were priceless when they discovered we were there. They had no idea who’s tienda it was or that our investigator worked there. They were just passing by and decided to buy something. It was pretty great.

Some sad news this week is that Elder Mansilla is being transferred tomorrow. His new area is in Montaria (yep close to were my old area was) so its kind of funny. I really going to miss him even though we barely got to be together. Here’s 4 reasons I liked him:

1. He has the same sense of humor as me so we always got along.
2. He was always helping me out in a nice way in improving my spanish.
3. He would always help me out to explain complicated things in spanish in the lessons
4. He bought me pizza more then once

Love you guys lots,


My comp, Elder Mansilla and the Elders Quorum President.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Baptisms Scheduled

Hola Amigos,

We have been doing lots of teaching lately and so have the sisters. We currently have 3 baptisms scheduled, and the sisters have 3 as well. There are two this week and, then on the 30th there are 2 and on the 5th there are 2 more so it should be pretty awesome. We are making progress.

As far as sending me money for a new backpack to replace my stolen one, I’m good right now. I don't really need to replace any thing. The stuff I cared about most was mostly sentimental value. I bought the ´´leg bag´ so I cant carry very much so I cant have any thing important on me and its working for now. My plan was to look for a nice leather messenger bag like the one I have at home when I need to carry things to district or zone meetings, or for transfers but I don't know where I am going to find one here. I will have to ask one of the members. I don't really need it right now, because its not really important but thanks. Also I cant believe that you still had the letters from trek that I had taken. That is so awesome! I was going to ask for those but didn't think that you would have them. Thank you so much.

Funny they had you talk about me in church Sunday. I guess its nice for everyone to get updates on us and maybe it will encourage others to go. I’m glad that every one had a laugh at my throw up story on the bus. It was terrible at the time but now its really funny.

As for any thing interesting this week. Well I went to the clinic this week since I had been sick for like 4 weeks so that was fun. Turns out I have seasonal allergies. Who knew right? He wrote me a prescription of drugs to take, then asked if I had a fear of needles. I said no so he sent me to get a shot to have the drugs active really quick. I walked in to the room and asked which arm do you need? The male nurse said that it wasn’t for my arm, it was for my tail so that was pretty fun. I am felling a lot better with the drugs he prescribed. So I should be fine.

Dad’s cafe racer is looking great. I love getting the pictures. Sadly my new comp doesn't know much about motorcycles or cars so I cant share what you did each week, its sad.

Not much else to say I guess.

Love you guys lots,


I got a hamburger delivered this week but it was way bigger than I thought it would be!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Church Activities


Just so you all know, I love my new area. I think my new area is a lot better then my old one was. It’s more urban then my old area. I like walking and looking around and seeing buildings not just tiny little structures. Also when you get to the edge of the city to the north because its built in the mountains there is an amazing view, It has been rainy a lot here so there are clouds swirling around the mountain and down through the valley. The first time I saw that scene (and pretty much every time after as well)  I think of the Misty Mountains song from the Hobbit. 

It is really interesting here in Colombia with all the big catholic churches. A lot of the christ statues are bloody, since the people here combined the old ways of the ``Lamanites`` I mean Indians and what they knew about human sacrifice with what the Spanish ``taught`` them so they are a bit creepy to me. Its always a relief when I walk in to our church and there is the famous painting of Jesus in the red robe the first thing when you walk in. Its nice to have the restored gospel. I don't see why every one else doesn't think so.

The food isn’t very different here from my last area. We do eat a lot of lentils here. What is nice is that we have the same people for lunch every week (with a few days changing every other week between families) so they know that i don't eat mountains of food so they are giving me less. Im not getting much luck on not eating `salad of cucumber and tomato. I guess i will be forced to eat that for my whole mission.

The best part of the week was that our activity that we had planed for friday got canceled so Elder Mansilla, Sister Perez, Sister Cavero and I had to plan a new event. They wanted to do acts that were the typical lame church ones however I remembered the show “Who’s Line Is It Anyway” and all of the awesome acts they had on the show (yes i watched that show before my mission via youtube). So we took a few of the acts modified them slightly to make them be funny for colombians and it was awesome and I had a blast All the members said it was one of the best activities they had come to.

This week was really bad for teaching. There have been huge rain storms all week so nobody is in the mood to listen. It was really terrible : ( Although I think that the rain is going to let up (I hope) and we will be able to teach as we normally do. Although he here in Chinchina we visit a lot more less active members and I really like it. We are gathering all the lost sheep and it feels great. 

Oh and Dad, thanks for sending me my blessing. It will be nice to be able to have it for the rest of my mission. This time it will not leave the house. Whats funny is some of the members asked how I was going to get a copy of it here in Colombia. I told them I was just going to ask you for it. They asked won’t it take a long time for it to get here, I said no, my dad has it on his phone and can send it to me in a email. They were blown away that that you just had my blessing on your phone. 

Love you guys lots

P.S. I love Dad’s new orange puff coat.

Here is a picture of our bedroom/study area.

My mustache for my mission impossible skit at the church.

The ward gets together every Friday at the church, its so cool.