Monday, January 24, 2011

More pictures January 24th

1) This is Mercy and her 2 daughters that got baptised last week
2) I am getting eaten alive by bugs!!! And this was a few weeks ago. It´s worse now.
3) A full functioning well!! This is the lady´s house that always gives us a nasty drink that I thought wasn´t purified cause it came from this well. But it turns out that she boils it. No worries.
4) And this is her (Maria Antionette) We were helping her weed her garden.

Pictures! Jan. 24th

1) Jessicas baptism!
2) Luis and Bertilias kids
3) All the hnas in my house. Hna Barrios, me, hna nelson and hna garcia
4) Sweat from my backpack. I know, I look like a drown rat. Every day.

January 24th, 2011

Hola Familia!!
Well this week was a rather exciting one! We had another baptism. Jessica (the 15 yr old with a babe) got baptised on saturday. It was sooo happy. She could not stop smiling the whole time. Precious. We asked her how she felt afterward and she just kept on saying soooo happy. And then she asked if she could have time afterward to share her testimony with everyone. So cute.

Also this week was a little creepy because at least 3 people told us we were going to get rob. And not just told us but they would stop us in the middle of the road and say uhhh Hermanas. You can´t walk around at night alone. You´re white, you´re going to get robbed. Awesome, thank you! And every house we went to, when we left they would say. Not you´re going right home right? And we were like...uhh no it´s only 5. And they would all tell us that we should be scared and go home cause it´s so dangerous. Kinda creeped me out. baha But nothing scary has happened this far so I guess we´re good!

Well alot of you have been asking me about what I do as a nurse so I will give you the run down. I have a cell phone on my 24-7 and missionaries call ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL the time. Some of them are legit reasons like rashes and parasites and such. And others are completely ridiculous. Like a headache for 30 min. I call the doctor a lot because I do not know stuff like what to do for a strange Guatemalan rash all over your body. He is very nice though and doesn´t seem to mind. Sometimes you have to send people to Guatemala City to go see a better doctor there so I´ve had to call a few surgeons and doctors there which is sometimes interesting in Spanish. Hna Nelson talks to most of the Elders who speak spanish and I talk to the ones who can speak English. They have to get permission from me to go to the doctor or get medicine and everything. Some of the time, I go to the farmacia and get the medications for them. Every companionship has a bag with every medication they should need for the general stuff and you have to refill them each transfer. Transfers are coming up so we´ve been working on getting a count and what all we need to buy and tomorrow we´re going to the farmacia to order all the meds. I don´t really have a special time set apart in the day to do nursing stuff, I just kind of talk on the phone when they come and sometimes we´ll go back to the house in the middle of the day to call people and the doc and stuff. Although every friday morning we go to the mission office to chart everything on the computer and in the missionaries files. Basically anytime I need to do nursing stuff, I just go home and do it. Hna Nelson comes with me to everything. She calls herself the Nursing Assistant. haha

Things that would only happen in Guatemala....
This week a member fed us some kind of sea creature that looked kind of like shrimp but GIANT!!!! And it had millions of legs and it´s eyeball still attached that I had to eat. They were VERY crunchy...

Lately...actually always when we contact people. We go to the door and we ask there kids if there mom is home. And they always say MOM! THEY´RE LOOKING FOR YOU! And you hear this voice say WHO and the kids say THE CANCHITAS! Which is like, the white girls. And you hear this IM NOT HERE in the background and then the little kids come back and lie to our face. It´s great. But this week we had an apt with this family and we watched at least 10 people walk into the house. And when we knocked, the one guy answered and we asked if his family was home and he said NO IM ALONE HERE of course. So I was just going to say, ok whatever and walk off but Hna Nelson LOVES calling people out so she said OH WHEN YOU SAY YOU´RE ALONE, YOU MEAN YOU AND THE OTHER 10 PEOPLE THAT WE JUST SAW WALK IN THE HOUSE RIGHT? bahahaha It´s great. I love harrassing people every day!

Well Ï typed this really fast so sorry if it didn´t make any sense but I love you all soooooo much and think you all are the greatest! Thank you for your emails and letters. I LOVE THEM!! Don´t have any fun without me! Talk to you in a week!!

January 17th, 2011

Hey fam! So today was I super good week! You wanna know why???? Cause I had my first 3 baptisms!! Woohooo! Their names are Mercy, Michelle and Estaphany. It´s a mom and her 2 daughters who are 14 and 12. They are suuuuper stong and are going to be great members. We are still working on the dad who says he knows it´s true but he´s not ready. It was cool though because Mercy told us that she´s really glad we were the missionaries in her area because she said she wouldn´t have let the Elders into her house. She has a really hard time with men because in the culture here they are the BOSS and the women do whatever they tell them to. And she´s a feminist and hates that. So that was cool. We also have another baptism this Saturday. Her name is Jessica. She is 15 yrs old and have a 6 month old baby. She confuses me cause she keeps all her commitments and reads in the BOM and answers all the questions right and stuff but I don´t know if she reeeeally gets it. But that´s ok. I´m excited for her. I´m starting to think that she´s only getting baptised cause she thinks that we are her ticket to the united states. On the walk home from church, she asked if she would have to have a Visa to get there if she just went home with us. Bless her heart. In answer to your question, we kinda stopped teaching Luiz. The president was worried for our safety cause he could be dangerous and such. We still go visit but not as much. Time is flying here. It is CRAZY to me that I´ve been here for 4 weeks already. Strange. I guess that´s what happens when you´re having fun. haha It is soooooo hotttttttt it´s INSANE! Everyone tells us that it´s just the beginning of the hot season. They say it starts right now and ends in May when the rainy season starts. And then it rains until November. I´m excited. haha Our electricity went out for quite some time. It was very intersting to try to live by candelight but also quite an adventure. In answer to your question on if I feel safe or not. I do. Every single house that they go to, they tell us that it is soooooo dangerous here and that 2 white girls really shouldn´t be here. But I´ve never seen anything horrible of felt unsafe really. But then again our curfew is 8 so maybe that´s why. haha

Funny things that would only happen in Guatemala.....
-There was a dog in the chapel on Sunday. The sad thing is, is that I didn´t even think twice because it seems so normal to me. Until an oooold man who can hardly walk started chasing it around the chapel in the middle of sacrament meeting. BAHAHAH! It made my day. (speaking of which, I had to speak yesterday. yuck!)

- Yesterday Hna Nelson and I were walking down the street and a drunk man came up to us and we kinda stopped like what the heck? And he got down on his knees and started bowing down to us and telling us that we are beautiful angels. And that his heart is gone and he thinks we have it! There were tons of people around and it was slightly embarrasing but nevertheless...hilarious!

- People are sooo honest here. Everyone describes people as the ugly on or the fat one. I heard someone describing me the other day as the Gordota (which means like not just fat but OBESE) hahaha I told Hna Garcia (one of the latina hnas that lives with us and she assured me that they were just being sarcastic but I´m not sure what to believe. hahahaha

- Something else interesting is that eeeeeveryone kisses everyone on the cheek as a greeting. I´m not a huge fan. The other day a man greeted me that way and he was drunk and I did not enjoy it so much.

Anyways, that´s all for this week. I tried to send pictures again but BIG SHOCKER, my computer isn´t working. I´ll try again or maybe I´ll have better luck next week. Love you all!!! Thank you sooo much for your love and support! You´re the BEST!!!!!

Love, Hermana Alston

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

January 10, 2011

Hello Family!!

Wow! This week was so eventful. Probably the best and worst week ever!! I have been getting calls offfff the hoooooook from sick people. EVERYONE in this mission has all kinds of worms and rashes. It´s incredible. And ´weve had to send a few people to Guatemala City for some more serious stuff. I better get a dang good letter of reccomendation out of this. baha Just kidding....but for real.

Ok, it is the best week because we have 8 possible baptisms coming up soon. We found a TON of people to teach which is amazing. Three of them (a mom and her 2 teenage daughters) walked up to us and asked us to give them the charlas so that they can get baptized. Ok! That would be out pleasure! haha! No, Luiz and Bertilia never got married and they haven´t been to church in the past 2 weeks. We went and chewed them out yesterday so hopefully that helps. Haha. I would go on and tell you more about all our investigators and stuff but when missionaries would write letters home about allll their investigators I was always so bored and swore I would never do that. So if they end up actually progessing and getting baptized, I´ll write about that. So anyways, that´s why it was a good week.

NOW, why it was a bad week. Especially yesterday. First of all EVERY SINGLE ONE of our apts fell through. So we spent the ENTIRE day walking. It was horrible. And while we were walking, we got chased by a pack of dogs. I HATE STINKIN DOGS!!! (I´m sorry Pearl, please forgive me). We now carry rocks around with us. Good think Hna Nelson is so brave. She beat them off with a Book of Mormon. baha! The other reason is, I am soooooooo sick of the men here. Alll of them call us beautiful chancitas (like white girls basically) and then (this is the worst part), they make a kissy noise that is sooooo juicy and lasts for like 30 seconds straight. I swear yesterday I almost punched one in the face. And one nasty man did something so gross and nasty I´m not even going to write about it. So I am beginning to hate men in general. Which is a bit of a problem when you are trying to teach them the gospel. Something I have to work on.

Here are some funny culture things...
- in church, they had a beautiful plant in front of the pulpit. the only problem is, is that the plant was A LOT taller than the pulpit and the speakers. bahaha! made me laugh really hard.
- They put absolutely everything in plastic bags (I think I sent you a picture of me drinking out of one last week (Drinks, Ice cream, popcicles, everything).
- We got a bunch of referals from an activity that we did and we have spent the last 3 days looking for them without finding even 1. The reason? Here is an example of an house is off of the street with the book store. Turn right on that street and then look for the tienda called lamb of god. There are 500000 book stores! And 50000 lamb of god tiendas. Good heavens. baha Needless to say, addresses dont exist here. Its just the red house next to the Coca cola store.
- Last night at Hermana Anas house (our cook) She made a specialty of cow nerves. They looked just a liiiiittle to much like the cadaver in anatomy so I respectfully declined. Maybe I´ll be more brave next time.

Sorry that I didnt have any explanations to my pictures but I just ran out of time. I´ll try to do better today. I love you all tons and tons!!!!!!!!! Thanks for everything!!

Love, Hermana Kami Alyse Alston

Sunday, January 2, 2011

December 27, 2010 1st letter from her area.

Well hello my dear family and friends! I regret to inform you that once again I do not have that much time because A) the computer is soooooo slow and unreliable and B) I just spent a good chunk of time reading your fabulous emails! I was soooo excited to get them. Im going to write a bunch of letters today when I get home.

Well since I just talked to you all on the phone, I dont have a whole lot to report. Especially because the day after I talked to you, I got deathly ill with some bug that everyone has here. I thought I might actually die but today I am feeling quite a bit better. Lets see....I realized I didnt tell you to much about the people-investigators here. NO ONE keeps their appointments. There is no such thing as time. EVERYONE says that we can come over whenever we want but they have no interest in talking about the church, they just want out company. We really only have 1 hopeful investigator. His name is Luiz and his "wife" is an inactive member. He used to be in a gang and just informed us that he has killed a ton of people. Awesome. The good news is, we have convinced them that they want to get married and he said that he wants to get baptised. The wedding is on Thursday. HOPEFULLY. Everyone says that though and then they are never home when we come to teach. Ohhh Guatemala. Everyone has "spouses" here but I have yet to meet someone who is actually married and not just living together for like 20 years. So a big thing is just getting people to get married before they can get baptised.
Everyone here just wants to "grow closer to God". Like when we ask them to pray to know if what we have said it true, they say "Oh no, I believe you, I dont need to pray." haha Its rather interesting. A TON of our time is spent visiting inactive and new members. There are sooooooooooo many inactives. They just get baptised and then never think about the church again. Its a bit discouraging. But at least we have Luiz.

About is HOT HOT HOT. I guess when I got here, I was just lucky because it was going through a kind of cold streak. I am dripping with sweat all day long and we walk everywhere through the dirt so I come home looking like a latino with all the dirt all over me. My house is absolutely ridiculously horrible. I didnt think that they would let sisters live in such horrible conditions but its all part of the adventure! baha! The only bit of furniture we have really is a giant hammick. There are GIANT GAPING holes all over the roof and and spiders and cobwebbs everywhere. Our sink/ clothes washer is called a pila. Its like a horse trough with three sections to it. It has water in it constantly and a bucket where you wash everything. I will send pictures of it but I dont think im going to have enough time today. For sure next Monday, I promise! Our shower is a little pipe sticking out of the wall with a small trickle of ICE cold water coming from it. haha! I love my life.

As far as nursing goes. I get calls ALLLLL the time. Its incredible what sissies some of these missionaries are. Last night someone called me at 11 saying that his chest hurts a little bit but only when we breaths in really really deep. And he has no other symptoms. haha I told him to suck it up basically. Some people have called with actual legit stuff though and I´ve had to call the doctor a ton.

Well I cant think of a ton more to say cause I already told you so many details over the phone. But thank you all soooooooo much for the packages and letters and emails! They made my LIFE!! I was sooo happy!!

Oh and the address that you should write me at is
Iglesia Mormona Boulevard Centenario
Salida a coatepeque, Zona 2
Apartada Postal No. 26
Retalhuleu, Guatemala
Dont pay attention to the other one I gave you.

Love you all more than life itself!!!!!!!!!! Have a FANTASTIC week!
Love, Hermanita Alston