Monday, June 27, 2016

I was asked to speak at the necrological service...

Helo! (that means hello in Tagalog. My language study sure is paying
off. :) haha)
My week has been pretty awesome. I had a fun time in my tropical paradise. Let me tell you all about it...

I have a story to tell you. There is this lady who lives in Puerto
(the biggest city on Palawan) and she died. The end. Just kidding!
Thanks to the Plan of Salvation, we know that it's not the end.
Anywho, she had her funeral here in Aborlan, 'cause her family all
lives here. Naturally we, being missionaries, had to give our support
and attend. We also attended because I was asked to speak at the
necrological service on Friday. It was really nice. So while you were
chillin' in the air-con and everyone else was partying at the lake, I
was at a funeral teaching about life after death and eternal families.

The next day was the actual burial, and all the church leaders here
weren't able to attend this time due to another funeral in Narra, so
they asked us missionaries to conduct and preside. It was a really
cool experience actually. I was asked to be the one to dedicate the
grave. I thought that was just for old people, but I guess I'm allowed
to do it too. Good thing it teaches me how in the Missionary
Hand-book. So for all you RMs that never understood why the
instructions for dedicating graves was in the handbook, now you know,
the author received a prompting to add it in there just for me,
because Heavenly Father knew I would be put in that situation. :) He's
so nice! So yeah. I guess I'm kind of like the new Speaker for the
Dead now. Good thing I read that book!

I couldn't help humming to myself the Hearse song all the day
long. haha I even taught all the lyrics I could remember to my
companion and we sang it during language study. It really helps with
his english. haha

Our new converts are doing really well! and yes, after their baptism,
we are supposed to teach them all the lessons again so they can more
fully understand and remember everything. They are super nice. Brother
Barone already has the priesthood, and will baptize his daughter in a
couple weeks. They are so nice! I love them!!!

As for Michaela, I am sorry about your air-con problem, but if it's
any consolation, we don't even have air-con in our house. During my
studies every morning, there are 2 wet sweaty spots on my desk where
my arms rest. At least you have hot showers, and a microwave. Count
your many blessings! haha Oo, and a washer and dryer, and stable
electricity. Almost every day the power goes out. Mahirap na mga
bagay! (hard things. That's my tagalog replacement for "rough stuff!")

Oops, gotta go! Magaling po kayong lahat parang aso! hahahahahahahahaha

Elder Fawesome

Monday, June 20, 2016

So we started our way down into the bukid (jungle)...

That's super duper fun that the house boat trip is next week. I'm not
gonna lie, I'm super jealous, but I did get to do a bit of wading a
couple days ago in the baptismal font, so I guess we can call it even.
You get to play at the lake all week long, and I get to help some
people qualify for the celestial kingdom. It was super neat. I was
able to baptize Brother and Sister Barone last Saturday, and the best
part is that I didn't even have to change my garments afterwards,
because they weren't even wet. hahaha. It was super convenient.
Yesterday they were confirmed and are official members of the Church.
WOO! Sister B was really worried about having to give a talk in church,
and was all like, "Maybe I'll just go less-active so I don't have to
do it." haha She was just joking of course... at least I hope so! 

Another miracle that happened last week happened that was super
awesome. We were wanting to teach an investigator who has a house in
Mabini, right next to our house, and also in Iraan, which is a 7
minute shuttle ride away. He wasn't at home in Mabini, so we went to
Iraan. The thing is we had never been to his house in Iraan, and
addresses aren't really popular here on Palawan. You can tell because
no one has one. The most specific you can get is which Barangay. haha
Anywho, In Iraan, there are 3 main roads. He had told us which road he
was on, but that's all. So we started our way down the way into the
bukid (jungle). Along the way there are lots of little trails that
branch off, and after about 15 minutes of walking down the road, we
felt inspired to turn left onto one of these little trails into the
trees. Along the path was a little power line, so we said "well, that
has to lead somewhere. We walked another good 10-15 minutes and came
across a little bamboo hut with lots of dogs that started barking at
us. We decided to approach anyways despite the dogs, and it turns out
Random Filippino bamboo hut photo
that it was Alfred’s house. What the?! His sister answered the door and
who is a member and asked how we knew where they lived, and we just
said, "ang Espiritu Santo" (The Holy Ghost). It was super amazing. The
only bummer of the story is that Alfred wasn't home there either.
hahaha It was still a super neat experience though, and now we know
where he lives, so that's good! hahaha So yeah. The church is true!

A few days ago I was doing my personal study to some nut-cracker music
going in the background. It was really nice. :) I just remember
studying in Makati to Highway to Hell. Things are a lot different
here. haha.

I had another great week. I wish I could share more but it's not
possible due to the difficulty of typing these words onto the
internet, but I do have a more complete account of my doings written
in my other journal. For I know that someday the internet will die and
everything saved here must perish, but the things written in my
journal must never perish, wherefore if ye desire a more complete
account, read my journal. haha

Mahal ko kayo!!!!!

Elder Fawson is out. Peace!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

I've munched my fair share of fish brains in the last few months.

That's so awesome you caught so many fish!!! We definitely need to go
fishing when I get home. I've been eating a lot of fish here in
Aborlan. Filipinos eat pretty much the whole thing. I've got to admit,
the heads are actually pretty tasty. I've munched my fair share of
fish brains in the last few months. hahaha

I'm glad you're still finding fun ways to enjoy yourselves despite my
absence. It's a good thing you aren't a Filipino teacher. The schools
here just started up today, but they got out for summer last April
though, so maybe it's about the same amount of time. I love you!!!

The Barone couple are officially married as of last Tuesday. It was
really nice and the most nonchalant wedding I've ever heard of. They
planned it like 3 weeks ago, then they just went the the municipio
building, waited a while in the waiting room (because the mayor was in
a meeting) then the marriage was in the mayor’s office. It was just
like 10 people there. The Mayor, Brother and Sister Barone, us 4
missionaries, and a few members. The whole ordeal took about 15
minutes and voila! They are married. Afterwards we went to their house
and ate some rice, adobo, pancit and ice cream. It was really yummy. I
think the only way to be more simple than that is to elope off to
Vegas. haha They are super amazing though. They'll be baptized this
Saturday at 3 o'clock. That would be 1:00 Saturday morning if you want
to set an alarm and celebrate at the same time as me. haha!!!

In Filipino cuisine pancit are noodles. Noodles were introduced into the Philippines by the Chinese and have since been adopted into local cuisine.

Philippine Adobo  is a popular dish and cooking process in Philippine Cuisine that involves meat, seafood, or vegetables marinated in vinegar soy sauce, and garlic which is browned in oil, and simmered in the marinade. It has sometimes been considered as the unofficial national dish in the Philippines.  
Elder Corpuz is super fun. We have had a blast this past week. We get
along super well. The other day it was raining like crazy and our
trike guy was being a slow poke (not the Pokemon, unfortunately) so we
were walking in the rain and the road was like a river. My shoes got
real wet and we were just singing hymns and kicking water at each
other as we walked down the dirt road. It could have been a very
miserable time, but we decided to have fun instead. Our other kabahay
(house mates) are super fun to. We have lots of happy moments in the
evenings when we are waiting for bed time and at lunch. We have
kabahay lunch, so we all cook and eat together. It is really yummy. I
can make adobo and fried rice now. :) I'll cook some up for you in a
year and a half when I see you again. hahaha

I got to bless the sacrament yesterday, so that was a fun experience.
I haven't done that since the MTC. I forgot how fun it was to be up on
the stand, looking at all the peoples faces and stuff. That's the
first time I sat up on the stand in my whole mission since being in
the field. I haven't ever had to give talks or anything. Good thing
to, 'cause my Tagalog is still not super prime. It's getting a lot
better though. I really like speaking in a foreign language. It's
especially fun to sing tagalog hymns. You should try it some time.

There's also lots of mangos here. People have these long sticks with
mini scythes on them. Brother Barone was using one to cut down some
mangos from a tree next to his house and I think that the grim reaper
himself couldn't have wielded a scythe with more skill. I tried it and
I was all like, "Scyther used CUT!" Then a mango fell from the tree.
"It's super effective!" hahaha I've learned a lot from my 1000+ hours
of pokemon. It's nice to know it wasn't just a bunch of wasted time.
hahaha :)

So yeah. That's a pretty good update about what's goin' on here with
me. I'm glad to hear you're all doing well! Mahal ko kayo!!!

Elder Rob Fawson

Monday, June 6, 2016

Mango trees are all over the place...Mangos are tasty! I'm lucky.

Helo sa lahat! 

I'm just living it up here in Aborlan. I OYM-ed a girl that is going to college here and she called A"boring"lan. haha! It's not boring for me, because I'm just stayin' busy preaching the gospel and doing my missionary things. That's how the gospel makes you happy. If you understand the gospel and are always fulfilling your church duties, and reading the scriptures everyday, and stuff, you'll never be bored. There are lots of other ways we are blessed by the gospel too, like free snacks in church, eternal life, and important things like that too. Speaking of Eternal life, the baptism on Saturday went just dandy. Everything worked out nice, and even during the demonstration of the baptism I dropped the practice baptizee, but don't worry! It wasn't Sister Hannalyn. It was a member, so hopefully he forgives me!!!! haha 

I have another super awesome General Conference worthy analogy. We need to obey God like pokemon obey their trainers. God is like the most skilled trainer in the universe, and his work and his glory come in us, his pokemon, to become as powerful as possible. To do this we need to obey his commands. We grow by battling wild pokemon (trials). Our trainer knows what we need to do to defeat these obstacles and give us experience. In the game, when the pokemon grow really strong but the trainer doesn't have enough gym badges, the pokemon don't obey. They do the move that they want and not the one commanded by the trainer, or they don't do anything at all and just "loaf around." It is like they become proud and think they know better than the trainer. We need to be careful that when we grow strong, and receive church callings like quorum presidents, or bishops and stuff, that we still rely on the guidance of the Lord and don't think we can handle this calling on our own, because we cant. Just like a pokemon will never reach lvl 100 by "loafing around" in battle, we will never obtain eternal life by rejecting the lords advice and council for our lives. So that's what I learned from over 1,000 hours of playing pokemon in my life. Good stuff...

The weather has been actually pretty nice here. It has been raining a lot the past few days, but not crazy, and it's actually good, because there has been a bit of a drought here apparently. It's hard, 'cause the water to the apartment is really slow, and it makes it hard to shower and cook and stuff. Don't worry though. I still shower. haha That would be gross if I didn't. 

Sorry I haven't been able to really send photos. The internet here is super slow, and when I try to upload my photos, it makes everyones internet even slower, so I'll send all of them when I get back to the main land. Sorry for the inconvenience!!!

I'm doing just dandy here in Palawan. My new companion is Elder Corpuz, which is funny, 'cause we have some recent converts who are also named Corpuz. They are not related though. :) I guest the best way to describe him is Exacto lang. That's cause that's his catch phrase. He says it in a funny way too. Sa halimbawa, "kamusta Elder Corpuz?" "Exacto lang." It is sort of like saying "pretty average" but he's the only one in the whole Philippines that says it. It's funny! I'll send you a photo of us in a few months when I am back on the main land and the internet is faster, kasi sobrang matagal ang internet dito!

That's fun you went on a hike to Toquerville falls. I actually haven't ever been there. I did go on a hike the other day too though. Our service trike was super slow to pick us up from an appointment we had in a far barangay, and while we were waiting for him to come after like 10 minutes, the spirit made me remember the words to a song. "Hit the road Jack!" I took it as a sign, and we started walking. haha after about an hour and a quarter of walking the trike finally came down the road and drove us the last half kilometer to town. hahaha 

I did see another famous person today. this time George of the Jungle was riding a motorcycle. No joke, it looked just like him! Aborlan is a very interesting place. Maybe it really was George. There is some Jungle really close. In our area even. hahaha

That's neat that Heidi is working in the snow shack now. Maybe she and Anna can have a Snow-cone off some time and dad can be the taste tester, after his cleanse is over of course! haha They have a lot of competition here. I had a mean mango shake the other day. There are mango trees all over the place, and people can just eat them as they please. They just get these really long bamboo sticks and whack 'em out of the tree, and then eat them. It's sorta fun. Mangos are tasty! I'm lucky, I don't need to use a stick. hahaha

I'm actually really diggin' the weather around here. It mostly rains at night, and is just cloudy during the day, so it's not super hot. I do know how you feel about the 100 degrees everyday. Just be grateful you're not on the XC team and are running in that nonsense. haha Even though it's not as hot here, I seem to sweat a lot more. I can't decide if it's 'cause of the humidity, or if I'm just super manly now. haha Hopefully the second, but if manliness is also judged by how fast your beard grows, there's no way to tell considering I have to shave every day. Rough stuff. Maybe I'll just say it's the man thing. :)

I'll be attending a wedding tomorrow of my investigators, so that's super exciting! On the 18th is there baptism, so you can look forward to that. Maybe you could bake a cake and say, Congrazzles Edmar and Russel!!! That's what I would do but I don't have an oven, or Betty Crocker to help me, so I'm a bit at a loss. hahaha

Anywho, that's what's goin' on with me. Mahal ko kayo!!!!!

Elder Fawson