My first week on the Res has been amazing. It is so easy to love this people. I am on the Salt River Reservation. It is a Pima and Maricopa reservation. Although I've met some Hopis as well. It's really weird because when I cam here I was so excited tok go work with the natives. But it didn't even cross my mind that I would be one of the only white people in the ward. It's funny to see, I understand how people of other races feel now. It's really great though because they make me feel like family. I love it. The Native American ward is the entire mission. So in our ward there are 5 sets of missionaries. There are 3 sets of young missionaries and 2 senior couples. It's really fun having 3 sets of young missionaries. Because at dinner we all eat together with the members. I think it's crazy members would want to feed 6 of us at a time, but hey they do it. And we love it.
Last night we had the best dinner ever. It was American food i had missed. I am talked pulled pork with SWEET BABY RAYS. And bread, watermelon, mashed potatoes,...that list of delicious food could go on foerever. I keep accidentally offending people. I am really trying not to, but I still forget sometimes. Here on the Res it's very rude to say no to food if people offer it to you. And I forget and say no I'm not hungry, because I'm not. But you have to say yes. And so I am going to gain a hundred pounds here. The other day Candice(an investigator) offered us food and I started to say no. But then Sister Soifua filled me in on their custom so I said yes. We had just eaten lunch before we left. And I ended up having to eat a sandwich, a bag of chips, and ice cream. So I am going to stop eating so much at home so that when I go out and they offer me food I will be able to eat it.
The work here is going well. We have a few investigators. One we're working with right now is Candice. She is Hopi. She has 3 kids that live with her and they are adorable. Especially her littlest one, Cameron. He. Is. So. Cute. He makes me wish I could hold children. She's had most of the lessons already, so we are teaching her commandments right now. I am hoping to commit her to be baptized in our next lesson. She is going to come with us to Mary(from my last area)'s baptism. I am really excited for that. 1) Because Mary is getting baptized and 2) because she is going to be touched by that experience. Serving the Lord is amazing and I wouldn't change that for the world.
So here are a few stories that you may find humerous. The first 2 were from my last area.
1. I was sitting at the table doing some progress records and the phone starts to ring. I look at the number. I knew it was going to be a telemarketer, but I answered it anyways. I said hello and asked how he was doing. In his not so good English he said he was doing fine and then preoceeded to ask me about my computer. I told him we don't have a computer--beacuse we don't. I was going to tell him it was because I was a missionary. Buuut. He said "Shut up" in a disbeliving voice and hung up on me. Oh how the tables have turned. I'm not used to being hung up on by telemarketers.
2. I got a letter from Dee from Canada. And in the last part of the letter she talks all about this Canadian quarter that she was going to send me to remind me of her. I was excited and I looked in the envelope------no quarter. I waslike, "Poor thing. Forgot the quarter." And then I looked at the end of the envelope and someone had slit it open and stolen it! I guess someone needed that quarter more than I did.
3. I was at church on Sunday and I pass this lady. I say "It was good to see you!", give her a hug, and start to walk away. When I start to walk away she takes my arm and says, "Hang in there. Don't worry, it'll get better." Here I am having the best Sunday and she told me to hang in there. I was so confused. I guess I must have had a really unpleasent look on my face or something. But hey, at least she cares.
Today I think I am going to go make a knife out of a cactus. That's prettycool right? I am really loving this culture here. It is so different from what I know. And I love it. The people may not live in the best of circumstances, but they're happy. And theyare loving. This week they get their percap. It's money they get every4 months from the casino. I hear that we aren't going to get to see anyone once Thursday comes because everyone will be out shopping. I am excited to actually see cars out on the road. I swear if I didn't go into these people's houses and know they were in there I wouldn't think anyone lived on the Res. We hardly ever pass any other cars.
I love it here and hope y'all are having a wonderful week! Keep me posted on your lives! Will you send some piotures of what Tennessee looks like? Some members are asking about it. They said they are trying to imagine it, so I thought it would be good if you could send some pictures.
1. Last district lunch before transfers.
2. Me with my first Cacti!
3. Thisis something really cool that was in my last building. It says the Elder or Sister's name and they can put mail in there to send to the people. I think that would be really cool for y'all to do since there are so many missionaries out from our ward. Just some food for thought.