Monday, October 16, 2017

Goodbye to Palawan and the mini-pizza miracle :)

"Saying our goodbyes to Elder Fawson and Elder Tavita. Well done thou good and faithful servants"
-Sister Porteous

Sister Janet Porteous standing on her tippy toes as she tries to get in the same  frame for a photo :) 



Robert and Brother Porteous in their matching plaid. 


Robert saying his farewells at the airport in Puerto Princessa, on the island of Palawan, on his way to the mission home in Manila for a couple of days before he comes home!


Hi sa lahat!

There was a crazy thing that happened yesterday. I was walking to a recent convert's house, Algene, to say goodbye to him (because I'm coming home on Wednesday) and I said to Elder Ahn, "it smells like those mini pizzas made out of english-muffins." then he was like, "Wow! I used to make those all the time in college! Man I want some of those right now." skip forward about 2 hours. We finished visiting Algene and also just finished teaching our recent convert, Michelle for the last time (because I'm coming home on Wednesday). The closing prayer just ended and Michelle stands up and says, "wait lang kayo." then she goes into the kitchen and brings out a plate of little mini pizzas made on little english-muffin-like bread. How crazy is that?!?! I haven't had those in probably like 4-5 years, and haven't even heard about them existing in the Philippines! Then Michelle says something to the effect of, "Masarap ba?” [It is delicicious?] I haven't ever tried making these before. I just wanted to experiment. I am 100% sure of some divine intervention here. :) Moroni was right. Miracles really haven't ceased. haha
The little girl is Avril. She was also there to witness the pizza miracle. You can see evidence of it because hinahawak niya ang pizza right there in the photo. :)
I just thought you'd like to read one of my last fun mission miracles before I can tell them to you under the sound of my own soothing manly voice. :)
Here's my district. The gwapo guy in the front is Elder Ludlow. He's super funny and cool! The Korean (not chinese) one is my companion, Elder Ahn. Not off, Ahn. :) Then there's sister Wily, and Biag too. They rock like a mountain!

We had hot dogs to celebrate my last Sunday in Puerto. :)


Well, I'll see you on Wednesday, or maybe it'll be super duper early Thursday morning. Depende sa flight ko kung may delay o hindi [It depends on my flight if there is a delay or not.]

Picture of a sweet island I saw out of my airplane window while flying from Palawan to the mainland kanina.
Anywho, kita kits tayo this week. :) Mahal ko kayo!


Elder Fawesome 

Monday, October 9, 2017

Our trio's down to two... ahhh.

Howdy everybody.

Elders Fawson, McCauley and Ahn :) 

MLC at at the mission home in Manila

Something weird happened today. We woke up at 5:15, and went to the airport to say ingat to Elder McCauley. He is leaving us to go off to bigger and more time consuming things. He's the new AP. As we said goodbye Elders Isla, Ludlow, Ahn and myself all got into formation and performed a haka we had been practicing. It was intense, and we got a lot of stares, but it was fun! 

General Conference was sweet last weekend. I super loved Elder Rasband's talk, Tad R. Callister's, and especially Elder Andersen at the end. Those were my favorites, but they were all super amazing!! 

On Saturday afternoon we went on a trip to Narra to view a baptism of one of Elder McCauley's previous investigators and as we drove past Aborlan a lot of memories came flooding back to my utak [brain] from when I was assigned there. I didn't get to stop and visit anyone, but it was fun anyways just to drive through my old stomping grounds. :) That was a nice area. 

I went on some exchanges with Elder Nisperos and Elder Mickelson which was really fun. They are fresh--starting and Elder Mickelson is still in his training, so that was pretty fun. We did a lot of finding. That evening we were walking down the road and a group of people were gawking at my height like they always do, so I started talking to them about basketball and stuff, then told them we were missionaries and asked if they were up for us teaching them right then. They were just nakatambay (hangin' out) on the side of the road, and sort of far daw from their houses, so we just taught them right there. It was pretty fun. I haven't had a side of the street lesson in quite a while. We just shared real quick about the restoration and got a return appointment. It was pretty cool. OYMing people is fun. 










Today was pretty fun too. Remember last week when we had a super crazy awesome beach party? Well we did it again, but with the Narra zone this time. The Porteouses invited us to come with them, so we had another budol fight, played more football, ate loads more banana graham cake, and I wore my sweet new hat Elder Porteous gave me the whole time. It was a blast. There should be some pictures of it on the mission facebook page. Go check it out!








During the Narra beach party we were wading in the ocean (knee deep mind you) and there was a cool light blue jellyfish swimming by, and we touched it. Don't worry though. We didn't get stung. I learned from Finding Nemo that "the tops don't sting you." It was pretty neat! That's all. :) 

Nasa labas si Elder Fawson! Kapayapaan!!!

Today Elder Ahn and I are feeling a bit kulang, but we're happy pa rin and are going to make the best of my last week assigned on Palawan. As of now, all is well, and life is treating me good. Sana all of you are doing good too. Mahal ko kayo!!!


Elder Fawson

Looks like a fun ward party :)






Monday, October 2, 2017

Baptism, budol fight, necrological service, huge holes in the soles of my shoes...


Hell everybody!!! (that's supposed to be hello by the way hahaha)

This week has been pretty nice if I do say so myself, which I do. Probably the best thing that happened was when we had hot dogs for dinner last night. It was pretty great. They were not just the cheap Tender Juicy ones that are not very good. We got the way good brand that makes your mouth explode with flavor with every bite. Not many things can top a good hot dog. Except for maybe the 2 baptisms we had last Saturday. I guess the hot dogs got bumped down to a close 2nd place for the best thing that happened this week. :)

Elder Ahn, Kier, Robert, Elder McCauley and Amalia
Amalia and Kier are officially members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. It was way cool. I got to baptize Kier and Elder McCauley binyaged [baptized] Amalia. It was a way nice baptism. There was a really nice turnout from the ward and the water was so clear, I could actually see my feet. Roxas was way fun, but there are a few perks of being assigned in Puerto. :)

Robert wearing his new hat to his zone beach party!

Kanina [a little while ago] was fun too. Elder Ahn and I put our violin skills to use and played a song in a necrological service (I still don't know why it's not just called a funeral here), then we quick changed clothes and went to a beach zone party where we all played volley ball, foot ball, and ate loads of food in budol fight form. That's when you put a bunch of kanin [rice] on some banana leaves and then you put a bunch of ulam on the banana leaves, then everyone goes crazy and eats all the food with their hands like wild animals. It's probably the funnest way to eat in the whole world. Too bad Utah doesn't have any banana leaves, otherwise y'all could try it too. Oh well. :)

Elder Ahn and McCauley with Sister Porteous at the zone party!

Elder McCauley Rockin' out
Now I'll only have one more e-mail from Palawan after today. Sorry about that. :) On Monday the 16th I fly to Manila, then on the 18th I fly to St. George. I mis-counted the weeks.

I'm not got a lot of time today due to the festivities earlier, so this is going to be a bit of a shorter e-mail, but I did get all the important things in. Baptism, budol fight, necrological service, huge holes in the soles of my shoes. That about sums it up. :) Mahal ko kayo!!! 


Elder Fawson

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Budol fight: when you get a banana leaf, cover it in rice and ulam and start eating like animals with your bare hands!

Hey everybody!

This week was super awesome. It would have been more awesome if a day and a half of it wasn't full of lagnat [fever], goose bumps, and vomiting in the Porteous' toilet, but it was pretty great anyways. 

Monday was super fun though up until the evening when the goose bumps mentioned above started kicking in. We went to the Crocodile farm here in Puerto and it was sweet! They don't actually grow crocodiles out of the ground like I was expecting. It's more like a reserve where they take them if they are found in areas where they could be a threat.
Mac-Mac
  They had this one crocodile and his name was Mac-Mac and he was over 18 feet long. That's longer than me! Also he was about 60 years old daw. Did you know that crocodiles can live to be 100 years old? I didn't until about a week ago. Cool stuff. They also had some other animals we could go and look at. 
I managed to get a selfie with the ferocious Elder Isla. There's also a huge 18 foot crocodile in the background named Mac-Mac. :)
They had some porcupines (they don't shoot their quills. I know that because the sign said so), some cool parrots that pooped a little on Elder Isla's head (Lucky!) and also a bear cat. That pretty much looks like a super duper fat fluffy raccoon. 


We fed him some corn nuts and now he is our friend. :) 

mangrove wood filled with tasty tamilok...yummy!

As we were leaving we saw a sign that said, "Tamilok!" For all you people that have no idea what that is, go watch the lion king at the part when Simba eats that huge gigantor worm thing. That's Tamilok [woodworm]. I know what you're thinking. "You didn't!" Well, I did. Mine wasn't quite as big as Simba's, but it was just as wormy and extremely chewy. More chewy than octopus. 

To eat these, you hold the worm by the head. Those hard things at the top are the worms teeth that it uses to eat the rotting wood. You put that end in your mouth last... These are more closely related to a sea mollusk than a worm apparently and they say they taste like oysters... unless they are not cleaned well and they still have rotton wood inside... hmmm, I wonder why Robert got sick that night? 

That's about all we did on Monday that was very exciting. Actually that's not true. We also ate at Mang Inasal. That's always exciting. :) Once we got home Monday evening I started to feel the lagnat [fever] coming on. The entire night was full of me rolled up into the tightest ball possible, probably similar to a rolly polly bug, shivering under my sheets not sleeping. It was pretty rough. 

Once Tuesday rolled around I was feeling a little better, so we went over to the Porteous' to do something important I don't remember what, then I ate some poached eggs and toast then the Porteous' left to pick up President Fermanis from the airport. Once they left my goosebumps came back and this time it came with some regurgitated egg. Lets just say the next hour and a half was spent knelt on the CR floor vomiting into the toilet. Once that was over we went to the church to help with interviews because President Fermanis wanted to interview the entire Palawan in one day. We were there to keep order, but I figured my companions had it covered so I just laid down on a bench and tried to not die. That's pretty much all I did for the rest of the day. 


Wednesday was our zone conference so that was fun and I was feeling loads better that day. Good thing too, 'cause I was conducting the meeting. :) At the end of the meeting I realized when President Fermanis asked me to bear my testimony that that was my very pinaka-last zone conference of my mission. That was weird. I talked about how the Book of Mormon is true and how God loves me because of toothpaste. It was really nice. :)


The only things worth mentioning on Thursday is that we did service at a recent converts house, and we had stake coordination that evening. The service was fun though. We did a bunch of pagdadamo (weed pulling) in her front yard and made it look all nice and beautiful, then Elder Ludlow and I built a super matibay [strong] bamboo fence. After all our kasipagan (hardworkingness) we went inside and had a budol fight. That's when you get a banana leaf (the really gigantor ones) cover it in rice and ulam and other food, then everyone just turns into wild animals and starts eating everything with their bare hands. (Good thing it's not with their bear hands or things could get a little out of hand. hahaha) As we were leaving it started raining super crazy hard and the roads were all flooded and it was wild. It's always awkward when the roads all turn into rivers. 

Friday was crazy busy doing lots of stuff that's not very interesting to you and I don't want to take the time to write about. Don't be sad please. :)

Saturday was fun. We went to Roxas for another baptismal interview. It was with an investigator that I had been teaching for a long time when I was there. His name is Lester. I don't know if I ever told you his kwento [story], but to sum it up, he is 12 years old, has been coming to church consistently for the last 9 months and every week used to ask me, "Elder Fawson, kailan ang binyag ko? Gusto kong mabinyagan." [“Elder Fawson, when is my baptism, I want to be baptized.”] And I would always respond, "Pag hindi ka na nagkakape, pwede kang mabinyagan." [When you’re not drinking, you can be baptized.”] The only problem is that he didn't stop his pagkakape (drinking coffee). Now I got to interview him and he's going to be baptized this Saturday. I'm so happy for him. He is one of the coolest 12 year olds I know. When he prayed during the interview he basically bore testimony to Heavenly Father that he knows the church is true, Joseph Smith and Thomas S. Monson are true prophets, the Book of Mormon is true, and everything. It was so cool! I'm sad I won't be able to attend, but I'm just happy it's finally going to happen. 

Sunday was cool, because after church two of our investigators got interviewed too for baptism and they both passed. Remember Amalia and Kier, whose sister I taught in Aborlan? They're getting baptized also this Saturday at 2:00 pm at the Malvar chapel. You're invited if you want to come. :) I guess if you wanted you could just stay up ‘til midnight on Friday and then acknowledge that it is happening at that very second. That might be fun. :)You'll get some photos of it next week, so be excited for that. :)

That's my week. All is well over here. I'm over my sickness and back to my regular malusog [healthy] state. I hope you all are doing well, are happy, malusog, and have a sweet week this week. I hope it's even sweeter than lemon bars (I ate some of those too last week). Mahal ko kayo.


Elder Fawson

This is the super cute baby monkey that Robert got to pet, hold and feed a banana to. 

ahhhh! 

Monday, September 18, 2017

new food created: Sunnyside-down macMoroni pizza! Pure genius :)

Hi.

This week was crazy! We had so much stuff going on it was ridiculous. Monday was fun. We had a birthday party for me. It was super awesome. We bought a 1,300 piso brick of real cheddar cheese (none of that fake Eden cheese nonsense) cooked up some macMoroni noodles, melted the cheese on the noodles and had homemade macMoroni and cheese. It was pretty tasty. Then there was lots of noodles left over and I'll tell you what we did with those later. (Suspenseful music)



Tuesday was crazy too. We went to the airport to catch our flight to manila for MLC and our flight was delayed pala. Dapat [must be] we left at like 2:00ish, but we didn't really leave until like 5:00. It was okay though, because we landed in the correct terminal and got some delicious Wendy's Bacconators. MMMMM BOY!!!!

Wednesday was MLC and it was super great. We learned about how to have the spirit poured out upon us and our areas, then talked about how to be effective leaders and then we ate some tasty MLC brownies and stuff. It was quite a success in my opinion. After MLC we were able to go to the temple, so that was of coarse a sublime experience. The temple is always nice. I was sitting in the celestial room and remembered the chandelier that used to be there. I think it was really just too great for this mortal sphere and is now hanging somewhere in the eternal realm of the celestial kingdom. The new chandelier is really nice too though and has lots of kulay [colored] rainbow sparkles. Yeah. The temple is the best!

Thursday was another miracle day. I went on another Crest hunt, because my toothpaste is almost out again and I was so worried that it wouldn't last on more month. Fortunately God listens to all our prayers and I was blessed with success once more. After I got my toothpaste we went to the airport and flew back to Palawan where we got home, had a short nap (because the previous days were full of gypped sleep and other super nakakapagod na [fatigue] things) and went out to teach a couple investigators. 

I have to tell you about a couple of our investigators. Their names are Amalia and Kier. They are magkapatid [siblings], and super amazingly progressing. The coolest thing is that they are a part-member family. Their sister, Armalyn, was baptized a little more than a year ago in Aborlan by a couple of Elders by the names of Elder Corpuz and Elder Fawson. Yup. How much radder can it get? Well let me tell you. Amalia and Kier are only 14 and 16 years old and have already read the Book of Mormon through Alma. They're getting baptized on the 30th of this month. Let me just tell you now, this is the epitome of ASTIG!!!!!

 Friday was busy too. We went and had to look at some bikes with the senior couple here for the Elders in Taytay, then we had weekly planing, so that took up almost the entire day. We did get to work for a few hours that evening though, so that was happy!

Saturday was way cool. Elder Andersen came to the Philippines to organize the 100th stake here in the country, the Mandaluyong stake, and last Saturday he did a priesthood leadership conference and we listened to a 4 hour broadcast of his teachings. It was really awesome. He taught about keeping the gospel simple. There are so many things and expectations and stuff that it can be overwhelming and hard for people to get it sometimes. It's important to keep it simple and easy to understand. There was some other stuff too, but this was my favorite. It was great!!!

yesterday was pretty much just the average Sunday except that we did some creative stuff for dinner. Remember the left over macMoroni from my birthday? We decided we needed to get it out of our fridge, so we created a new food. We whipped up a couple eggs, stirred in some hot sauce, put the noodles in it, then tossed it on the frying pan so it was like frying an egg, but with lots of noodles in it. Then we sprinkled some cheese on top and covered it with pepperonis. it was like an sunnyside-down macMoroni pizza. That's what happens when you don't prepare food for the sabbath. You just throw random stuff together, but it was honestly super masarap [delicious]. We called it the Ahn McFawsonley. Pure genius. :) I'll include a photo so you can sort of imagine what it was like. :)




Someone told me my hair looks like corn yesterday. So yeah. that was my week. This week will be just as busy, so you can be excited to hear all about it next week. I don't wanna give out any spoilers. :)

Mahal ko kayong lahat!!!!!! [I love you all!!!!!!]


Elder Fawson

Monday, September 11, 2017

Yesterday was my birthday which was nice...

Okay, so this is not really Robert... but it is Palawan!


Hello sa all y'all.

Who wants to know about a a cool miracle that happened this morning? Syempre everyone! I was preparing for the day and was waiting for Elder McCauley, my new guwapo companion, to finish ironing his shirt. He finally finished and I started my own then after like 2 minutes I realized that the iron wasn't even hot even though it was plugged in. I was confused because it had worked so well for Elder McCauley, but not for me. Turns out right as I started a burnout started too and we didn't have any koriente. I decided to wait for it too come back, but after like a half hour we decided to have a kabahay prayer and ask Heavenly Father to please bless us with electricity. About 2 minutes after the "amen" the electric fans started going and we were back in business. Then we knelt down and gave another prayer of gratitude. It was super cool. Moral of the story, God loves us and wants us to be happy. It was really cool. Now I have a wrinkle free polo and am feeling oh so fine. :)

It's been a crazy week. Transferring is always crazy, but this one especially because I usually have time to actually get familiar with my new area for the first few days, but not this time. We have been so busy doing so much stuff. Last Saturday we went back to Roxas for a baptismal interview (I conducted the interview which was fun because I taught the candidate a a couple times on exchanges before I transferred). We also had a meeting with the Porteous' about some stuff we needed to coordinate to combine the Roxas and Puerto zones, and then just a bunch of other stuff that abducted almost all our proselyting time. We'll probably go back to Roxas again this Saturday for another baptismal interview. This one is someone that I would've baptized had I not been transferred. I'll just have to interview her instead. :)

We did get to teach a few lessons though. One of them was with some new investigators we found in a fun way. We were looking for this lady and we went up to this house to ask if they knew her, but before we could say anything they told us to come in and sit down. We just sort of played it cool and pretended we knew what we were doing, but really we had no idea who these people were. Turns out they were a family of previous investigators of almost a year ago. We taught them and are going back on Tuesday. Then we also found Saphia (the person we were looking for in the first place) and taught her too. :) It was cool. This week I'll be able to get to know the area and current investigators better... if we have time after MLC and all. We're going to Manila on Wednesday and Thursday, so that'll snip out a chunk of time to teach, but it's fine. MLC is the best!

Elder Ahn and McCauley are my new companions and they are super awesome. They are both Amerikano, so that's fun. I went the first 18 months with purong pilipino companions, and now I'm gonna go the last 6 with purong Ameikanos. Fun stuff! 

Yup. All is going well here. I'm still on Palawan which is nice, I have sweet companions which is nice, yesterday was my birthday which was way nice, and we're making some homemade macaroni and cheese for lunch later which will be super nice! Yup. I'm doing good! :) Hopefully you all had as great a week as me and have a nice upcoming week as well. I know I will. Mahal ko kayo!!!


Elder Fawson

Monday, September 4, 2017

The greatest last transfer of my mission!!!

Hello world. 

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! The season just creeps up on you so fast! especially when an entire 1/3 of the year is the christmas season where you live. We sang Oh Come All Ye Faithful in church yesterday. Fun Stuff. :) 

Many of you may be thinking this is just an average day in the same computer shop I've been e-mailing in for the last 8ish months, but you thought wrong. I'm in Puerto right now in a computer shop I've never seen before in my whole 19 years and 358 days of being alive on this earth. We (Elder Tanner and I) left Roxas yesterday and stayed the night here in Puerto, then last night we had a most excellent spaghetti dinner, with some nice salad and a tasty graham cake in commemoration of Elder Tanner and Ullery's last Sunday in the mission. We woke up at 4:20 this morning to get ready and dropped them off at the airport. They are already in Manila right now. While sitting in this computer shop, the transfer info just came in. I'm going to lumipad to Puerto and be zone leader here. My companions (yup. that's plural, with an "s") will be Elder Ahn, and McCauley. They are both super awesome and this is going to be one of the greatest last transfers of my mission!!!


The only problem now is that all my damit [clothes], gamit [stuff], and other Kwan is all naiwan [behind] in Roxas. Looks like I'm making a road trip up there tonight to pack and stuff. My recent converts are going to be super bummed. I'm going to miss the Rublez family so much. They were the very first people I taught when I got to Roxas last February. I helped baptize them, and am now working on teaching the sister of Sister Marissa. That's going to be a hard goodbye! There are lots of people we were working with that are progressing super well. I think next transfer there could be 8-10 baptisms in that area. The people we were teaching were super solid in everything. I know the missionaries that are taking over though, and they are way awesome!!! I'm sad to go, but I'm still going to zone leader of Roxas too, because the Roxas and Puerto zones just combined, so I'll still be updated with everything. Also I'll be going back at least once this transfer to do exchanges, so I'll be able to see everyone again then as well. :) 

I got my itinerary sent to me today too, so that was sorta weird. I'll be arriving in St. George around 11:10 PM. That's pretty late. I hope Subway is still open at that time! That's a good idea about seeing Claire and Jon in Salt Lake. I think that would totally work out. I will be able to hold baby Margot, and see if Eevee still knows who I am before I even get home. I'll have to teach some Tagalog to Mila too so next time they come to visit home we can have secret conversations about My Little Pony and no one would ever suspect us. hahahahaha

Kind of a lot is going through my mind right now after hearing about transfers, and getting my itinerary and all that I can't really think about anything very interesting in comparison to talk about. We paid the electric bill the other day. that only happens once a month. It was about 1,400 Pisos. That's about the equivalent of $30. Does electricity cost much more than that in America? I don't really know. If you add the water bill on top of that it may be about $35. It's a good thing we split that between the two of us. I don't know if my support could handle paying all that on my own. :)

Another cool thing happened on Saturday that may catch Heidi's interest. We went to visit our recent convert Jocelyn so Elder Tanner could say farewell, and when we got to their house there was a baby monkey that Tatay Sanchez found and caught. Now they have a pet baby monkey and he is oh so very very cute and I pet him, and hawaked him, and played with his baby monkey ears. It was so awesome!!! I didn't have time to copy the pics to my flash drive, so maybe next week you can see his kaastigan [very good]. Yup. Fun stuff. :)

That about sums up all that's going on with me. Life is good, it's going to stay good with everyone who's getting iwaned in Roxas, and it's gonna be crazy good with all us here in Puerto. Sana l[hopefully] life is keeps goin' good fer all y'all din [also]. Mahal kita and ingat [and remember I love you]. Sa labas na si Elder Fawson. KAPAYAPAAN! (Elder Fawson is out. PEACE!)


Elder Fawson