This week we did not receive a long email from Jake. Instead, he sent several brief emails, mainly answering many of our questions. Here are some of the questions he answered for us this week:
Lemon Lime Crush
In his last email, he sent of photo of himself drinking a “Lemon Lime Crush.” Jake knows that “Lemon Lime Crush” was my favorite soda in Guatemala, back in the day, so he decided to taunt me with a photo. Apparently they are phasing it out down in Guatemala as well.
Lemon Lime Crush is really the only thing here that they do not have in the U.S. that I can brag about, so I could not resist sending you a photo of me drinking it. It is really hard to come by Lemon Lime Crush here; only a select number of tiendas carry it. Funny, I got the rest of the elders addicted to it as well. Anytime we are able to find a tienda (store) that sells it, we totally clear out the store for the week. Speaking of soda, I’ve been meaning to ask you if you if you noticed when you were a missionary here that all the expiration date on all the soda in Guatemala is always like a month away from expiring? When you buy soda in the U.S., it is always at least a year away from expiring?
Guatemalan Chicken Buses
I actually forgot to mention the another prerequisite of a Guatemalan “bus caller”
– Prerequisite #4: you have to be a least over the age of 6. I’ve seen some very your “callers.” Not sure why they aren’t in school.
One thing that you forgot to mention about the chicken buses is that they always have a cracked windshield or cracked back window, and that you are lucky if the seats on the bus are ever securely fastened to the floor. You truly take your life into the bus driver’s hands anytime you ride a Chicken Bus. You know, riding a Chicken Bus today is probably even worse than when you road them. Now they have the “tumulos” (speed bumps) everywhere. Ha! It is so true what you said about buses being cramped! The only thing beneficial about the buses being so cramped, is that there is always people who will brace your fall. It’s like being being insulated in bubble wrap. The “camionetas” (Chicken Buses) here look pretty old on the inside, so I would not be surprised if I have ridden in a bus that you road in 23 years ago.
Service is the Key
You are definitely right about winning people’s trust when you perform acts of service for them. For example, on Wednesday my companion and I helped a less active member move furniture in her home, and after all the times we have invited her to church, she actually came this time. Service is the key!
The “Calidad Family” Update
We got the “Calidad family” to come to church for the first time this Sunday, but since they are pretty strong Catholics, we will still have to work with them quite a bit more to help them feel the Spirit, which will lead them to get baptized. (note from Dad: “calidad” means “cool” or “awesome.”)
Fruit and “Boo”
I actually had a little “boo” on Wednesday, as did another gringo elder from another companionship who lives with us. He thinks we got “boo” because a lot of members here offer us fruit, like mangos, that have parasites. Although most of the fruit here taste better here than the fruit in the States, you are so right about how bad the oranges taste here.
I get along pretty well with all the elders in my area. There are not many people I am unable to get along with…which is probably why my Patriarchal Blessing promises that I would get along with all my companions. However, I do get annoyed sometimes at how dirty missionaries are. I feel like the “mom” in our house…constantly nagging everyone to clean up after themselves. I am pretty sure they are all clueless. They don’t seem to understand why our house smells like garbage. It does not take a rocket scientist to know that the reason why our house smells like garbage is because they just let their garbage pile up.
Love you for eternity, Jake