Hello family, friends, acquaintances, strangers, "...and everyone else not sitting on a cushion!"
Life is super awesome over here in the Aborlan district. It's definitely different than Makati. Das fo sho! "The air is clean, the water's clean (though I still wouldn't trust it without my filter), even the dirt is clean!" Don't ask me about bowling averages or mini-golf scores though. I don't know about them. hahaha
It really is pretty awesome though. We live in a small house, that's actually way bigger than my previous apartment, with 2 other people. So there are 4 of us total. It's also cool, because we live in our area. One of the first days we were here, we just tracted all the houses near by, and found a couple people to teach just across the street from us. :) It helps to be the most peculiar thing in town to start up conversation.
My hands are really clean right now, 'cause I just finished washing my clothes. No washing machine, so I'm back to doin' it old school. :) But hey! Clean hands and a contrite spirit? I've got the first down for sure. haha
Sorry I don't have any photos yet. The internet is really slow, and I'm sort of in a hurry with E-mail today, so probably next week you'll get to see my new home and surroundings. :) It actually looks a lot like Utah, but more palm trees. :) haha
Our area does extend to the beach, but it's quite a ways away, 'cause our area's huge, and President Ostler advised us to teach people closer to the chapel because other wise they tend to go less-active really quick because of the inconvenience of traveling to and from church. There are lots of dusty trails we walk down. Good thing I got my shoe-shining kit! Every once in a while we pass a little house made out of bamboo and stuff. The whole house is made out of bamboo. It's really quite amazing!!!
People don't speak much English here so my Tagalog is getting a lot more practice than before. Mostly it's just really hard for me still to understand what others are saying to me. I can usually get my point across. It's really hard, but I'm getting the hang of things. :)
Still no problems with Elder Ordesta and I. We are getting along pretty well. He's been giving me lots of tips of little things I can do to be better, which has been a big help. I know as I implement his advice I will really improve my missionary skills. Who better to get help from than someone who's been doing it for a year and a half? :)
General Conference was really awesome, and I even understood almost every word that was said. How cool is that! It would have been a lot cooler if it were in Tagalog, but English is good too. :) I really liked all the talks. Sometimes I used to feel like some people would talk a bit too long, but this time I was surprised when the sessions ended so soon. haha I guess that's what I get for being a missionary. When you feast on the words of Christ, you just can't ever get enough. :) I got a bunch of notes which are really helpful! I got a lot of ideas of how to explain certain principles more simply that I can apply to my teaching. I'm so grateful for our church leaders!!!
I am really lovin' it here! Oh!!! Look at the time. I've got a funeral to attend! Got to go. :) bye!