Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Week 4!

It feels like it's been forever since I first got here! Today we had TRC (teaching while being filmed) and Elder A and I had a really good lesson planned and everything! So we got there and since he's district leader, they asked him if he wanted to be an investigator instead of teaching because they didn't have enough teachers. So instead of teaching we got to sit back and have a companionship in our district teach us. It was sooo much better than teaching, but I was a little sad because I was actually wanting to teach this lesson.

 I was coming off a good note this past week with teaching. I think on Thursday I had a really good day with teaching. Elder A and I probably had an almost flawless lesson. We didn't really do anything a whole lot special beforehand, but for some reason it was a million times better. Elder A (like I've said before) has the tendency to go on and on and on without letting me say a word. But with this lesson, I actually talked a lot. I honestly think it had to do with the investigator. He was really clear with his words and responded back with more than "yes" or "no"  responses. I was able to talk a lot more because I actually knew what was going on hahaha. I feel I can hold my own with talking, like I can get my point across with words I know. but then I have no idea what people are saying back because they speak EXTREMELY fast and there's a lot of different types of Portuguese spoken. Like Brasilians from the south sound way different from the Brasilians from the north.

 It cracks me up when I think about TRC (where they film you while you teach) because it's almost identical to Monsters Inc. There are a bunch of doors on either side of this hallway and your companion and you sit right across from the door. A little bell rings and we all go up and knock on the door at the same time. And then you enter through the doors. The first time I did it, I paused a second and laughed to myself because I thought that's what we were doing.

 We get lab time everyday to get on the computers and use this program to help us with the language. But lately they've been having problems with it so a couple other elders and I have gone onto the LDS  genealogy site and have looked through our ancestors. If I counted right, I'm 73 generations away from Adam and Eve. We've been able to find our lines all the way back to the beginning. Now I don't know how much of that is actually correct, but it's pretty neat none-the-less.

 Answer Time . . .
*I'm on the 4th floor. I forgot how they have it in the states, but in Brasil they have floor "T" or "Terra" which means Earth. After that, the floors go normally, so the one above floor "T" would be first floor. If you're counting the main/ground level floor as the first floor, we're technically on the fifth floor.

 *My roommates were Elder A, Elder C, Elder W, and then the two other Brasilians (Elder S and Elder D). The Brasilians left this past Tuesday and no other new ones have moved in , so it's just the four of us.

Levantar, orar, proparar-se         Wake up, pray, prepare                  6:30-7:00 am
Estudo Pessoal                               Personal Study                                  7:00-8:00 am
Desjejum                                         Breakfast                                            8:00-8:30 am
Estudo do Idioma                           Language Study                                8:45-10:00 am
Gym                                                  Gym                                                    10:15-11:05 am
Lab                                                    Lab                                                      11:20-12:05 pm
Estudo c Pratica                              Study and Practice                           12:05-12:45 pm
Almoso                                             Lunch                                                  12:45-1:30 pm
Gramatica                                        Grammar                                           1:30-2:30 pm
Fundamento                                    Fundamentals                                   2:30-3:45 pm
Ensinar Instructor A                       Teacher A                                           3:45-5:00 pm
Jantar                                                Dinner                                                 5:00-5:45 pm
Fundamento                                    Fundamentals                                    6:00-7:30 pm
Gramatica                                         Grammar                                            7:30-8:15 pm
Ensinar Instructor B                        Teacher B                                            8:15-9:10 pm

 *Each Sunday we study and eat breakfast before 8:30ish. Church starts at 9:00 am. We only have sacrament meeting and Priesthood. They don't say who's speaking in sacrament until the announcements. They want you to have a talk ready to go. Six weekers have to do their talk in all Portuguese and everyone before then can do theirs in English if they want. After church, we all have district meetings where we plan goals for the coming week and after that my companion and I go to a leadership meeting with all the other District Leaders. That ends at about 1:30ish. After that we can do anything we want until 6:00 pm and that's when we have a fireside.

 *I wake up at 6:00 am every morning to get a shower without waiting because the schedule time to wakeup is 6:30 am.

 *Every class is with your district. You're assigned to a room at the very beginning and you have to keep that room until the end.

 *You can only go about a mile radius around the CTM on p-day. They give you a map.

 *There are security guards, but not in the towers or anything like that. the CTM is surrounded by about 12 feet walls with barb-wire on the top. I don't know about the rest of Brasil, but in Sao Paulo, it's a normal thing to have a tall wall around your house with barb-wire on the top of it. We passed by a favela (the ghetto . . . look up pictures) on the way to the temple. Instead of having bar-wire, they had shards of glass embedded on the top of the wall. These weren't just little pieces of glass. They were big pieces-some bigger than your hand. Crazy stuff.

Oh man . . . What a funny morning. So I roll outta bed, super tired. Walk into the showers, turn on the water, and it's only at about half power for some reason. Oh well. Start soapin' up just like any other day. About halfway done, water really starts dying down. Other guys start complainin' because their water turned off. I'm rushin'! Water is literally dripping out when I finally clear off the remaining suds. Justice. Hahaha. I don't really know why I wrote that story like that. It's probably cuz I'm really bored right now and SUPER tired! Anywho . . . The funniest part about this was that there was this hilarious African American elder (Elder S) running from shower to shower, butt naked, trying to get any last drops to wash off the soap. That was his last day at the CTM so it definitely wasn't a good morning for him. But because of his reaction to all the water running out, it made that whole experience worth it. I wish you were there to see it . . . haha maybe not the best way to put that, but you get what I mean :).

 I'm on the bus right now so my writing might get a little sloppy with all the crazy driving. So last night, this administrator guy came into our classroom and told us that we would be getting another missionary from the Provo MTC. He would be in a triple with Elder A and I. The only bummer is that Elder A and I would have to move rooms all the way down the hall from our district and everyone we know. It's gonna be weird trying to teach with three because my companion and I already know how each other teaches. We also have no idea how much Portuguese the new guy knows and where he's at with the language. I'm really hoping that he has some sense of direction.

 More answers . . . from the Missionties letter
*Yes, I have been getting the pictures and letters. I think it takes about 2 days for the letter to get to me.

 *Elder M is on the Fall-Spring track at BYU-I. We've been talking and if things work out and we both go up the same semester, we'll probably room together.

 *So about the Elder Baby Horse nickname . . . I guess there's a girl on the women's USA soccer team (Alex Morgan) that has the same nickname. I told this guy that I was going to marry her and he was going to marry Hope Solo. It was just coincidence that she had "horse" in her nickname and so it stuck. A lot of people call me that hahaha.

 *I'm not positive, but I'm pretty sure I was about 158ish pounds before I left. This past week I hit 170, but that was right before eating. I'm eating a lot and trying to gain weight. I'm trying to work out and eat really healthy.

 *Elder L and I both did the pizza party thing last week. Today I've got that second one along with someone else.

Love you so much! Talk to you later :).
Elder Steed