Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First Letter from MTC August 26, 2014

Well family they asked us to send a letter home on our first night but I did not have any idea what the address of the rental or the new house in Kuna or even the address to Amanda's apartment was so I didn't get to send you anything.  Well first of all I will just get all of the Business side of everything out of the way.  I want to tell you all about Eldermail.com.  It is a website that you can use to basically write an Email and it emails directly to the MTC and they print it off the same or next day and then deliver it to the missionary.  So if you want to communicate with me more then once a week that is probably the best way to do it.  Also I forgot to have you look up the Balance in my Checking account so if you could do that it would be awesome.  If you are considering sending me a package I am just going to tell you now don't worry about sending food until I am out of the MTC.  There is a stupid amount of food and junk around here for us to eat.  And these Utah missionaries all around me have junk food coming out of their ears that is going to waste.  The only thing that I could use is some mints because gum is against MTC rules and I am really tired of having disgusting breath.  Also some cheapo ball point pens wouldn't hurt at some point because I only have one that is good for writing in my scriptures.  That is about all for the business end I needed to get out of the way.
So now to tell you what is going on.  I think you would be interested to know that the first day I walked in and the first person that I saw in the hallway was Aubrey Allen.  And then I ran into here again within about 10 minutes so I thought that was pretty funny.  She gave me a warm welcome which was nice.  the whole situation put a smile on my face and the whole situation cheered me up. It really made me much more comfortable here right away.  I also had about 2 hours of class where about 100 missionaries that had just arrived were trying to teach an investigator together with absolutely no planning or lesson whatsoever which was very interesting with several different investigators where Matt was in the same group as I was so that was fun.  I never sat by him or had a real conversation but we are pretty decent at this point with long distance communication.  I learned a lot on my first day and I am starting to feel like a missionary now that I have the sweet badge and because of the fact that everyone calls me Elder.  Portuguese is not easy.  I am really having a hard time.  I am working hard to try to learn it and remember how to pronounce the words but most of my district has lots of foreign language backgrounds so they are better than me at this point.   It is getting better but we have already taught our investigator 3 times and those have been pretty rough.  But on the last one we asked here to commit to baptism anyways which she was open to but didn't understand why she needed to be baptized again since she was baptized as a catholic.  And we had no idea how to answer that in Portuguese so it wasn't perfectly smooth and we had been going for almost an hour so she asked us to come back another day.  Sometimes I really miss good old English.  My companion is named Elder Beeton.  He is from Orem Utah and is a pretty chill dude that likes to exercise so we have been getting along pretty well.  After a couple days we became a trio with Elder Burquist because his companion went home.  He is from Las Vegas and I like him quite a bit.  He likes to wakeboard and snowboard if that tells you anything about what he is like.  He and Elder Beeton are quite a pair though they are really rowdy and struggle to focus when they are together.  So that is something that we have been having to work on lately.  We could be losing him soon though because an Elder from the other portuguese district in our zone that came in last week got his visa to Brazil and left this morning so we will see what is going to happen.  The food here is pretty good.  There is certainly plenty of it.  I have been enjoying endless amounts of BYU chocolate milk.  It beats river food but it is not like mama's home cookin that is for sure.  I have been struggling to find some vegetables that I actually think will be healthy apart from salad with a little vinaigrette on it.  But my fruit intake is awesome.  Class is about where we live and we study a lot.  Our teacher's name is Irmao Nielson. Irmao being brother.  He is awesome and we are actually going to be his last district since he is quitting after having been here for over a year. So he knows what he is doing and is very good.

here is two other Elders in my district.  Elder Sutton and Elder Wilkes.  Wilkes is our district leader he is Utah kid along with Sutton.  Wilkes has a girl that is 16 years old that he thinks he is going to marry when he gets home.  Hahahahaha I thought that was pretty funny.  Elder Sutton My first impression made me think that I wouldn't like him but I was wrong he is pretty cool.  He showed us his drivers licence and he used to have a chin beard and a buzz cut that made him look like a convict.  He has a babyface though now.  There are two sisters in our district. They both were dancers and one was on the ballroom team at BYU I thought Amanda might be interested in that.  There names are Sister Mcchesney (excuse the spelling)  and Sister Anderson.  They are the overachieving type that are always showing up the Elders. Sister McChesney is 22 and Anderson is 20 so they have some years on us.  

So I have been hitting the Journal pretty hardcore every night and have already filled 18 pages in it.  And I would love to tell you all about almost all of it.  But in the MTC we are limited to an hour of email time and so there is no way that I will be able to type it all out since I am already a really slow typer and so much happens every day here.  I want to try to send you pictures of all the pages but I am having a hard time trying to figure out how to do that.  So I guess I will just have to tell you some stuff real quick that is most important.  I have been learning to pray in portuguese since day one.  I have been struggling a lot with that but i have the basics down now due to how often we pray and hours of additional study on that.  It is really enjoyable to be here. I have lots of fun.  sometimes to much probably but I am learning alot.  It is like preparing for an AP test or finals constantly but with the spirit so it is not that bad.  Also  so much more comes to your memory when you really need it to for the investigators sake then when you are just learning for yourself.  Portuguese as much as we possibly can always trying to speak our language.  We have memorized our purpose as missionaries and are working on the first vision.  I am doing my best to work hard and stay focused which is not easy in these long days.  But we will have to keep on trekking. I love you all and miss you a appropriate non distracting amount.  I have been keeping you all in my prayers.  I hope you are all adjusting well to Kuna.  

Elder Hobson

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