Mom! Wow! Santa Rosa is...well, the area I'm living in is like the nicest rich area in Viedma, and the ghetto here is where I was living there. So it's really, really pretty. Luckily I'm in the actual city, because the outlying towns aren't this nice. however, it's HOTTTT! Get's up to 115 degrees on bad days. They say sweating is good for you, I sure hope so. At least we stay hydrated. First off, the weird spots on my back, turns out they AREN'T skin cancer. It's just a virus that the mission doctor says will go away. Sorry I forgot to tell you about that.... MY comp, Elder Guevara, is a peruvian/japanese (from his mom) and is in his 2nd transfer and just an all around happy guy. Really chill, funny, solid kid. I like him. I tend to get along well with the peruvians in the mission, it's a good culture.
(Elder Guevara) Speaking of peruvians, E Torres is HOME!!! Kinda weird. I'm responding to Dad's email here too because we have to look for a new apartment and we have a few appointments tonight to meet with people. The elders before were robber 3 times. Even though we're on the second level... The ward is cool. Yes, it's a ward, with a good amount of people. Most of them are pretty old in the church and so are just kinda content in their membership, aka, lazy. But, they are really good people and can be whipped into shape. Our bishop is a young RM very interested in helping out the miossionaries and we have some great young adult males in the ward missionary effort, I'm excited. We already have 4 baptismal dates for january. A father and his daughter that are the family of a recent convert (the mom) The girl wants to be baptised but the father is still a little bit hesitant. He said that if gets an answer though he will be baptised on the 22nd. Marcelo and Natalia. Then we have Marcelino. He has been coming to church for years, including paying tithing and reading. For some odd reason he has resisted baptism. Fixed that right away, and now he has a date for the 22nd as well. VERY intelligent man, we went over for a lesson and he wanted to talk about how the gospel helps purify our lives to eternal progressiong and one living as God does...yeah. Then he went on and pretty much quoted the family proclamation for the world and how satan wants to destroy the family unit more than anything else right now. Very cool guy. Jessica, just needs to get married to her member boyfriend and she can get basptised. And that is the news of the week. An old guy wanted to gice us the book of mormon back, but apart from that not much more interesting invest. info. What do you when a young woman answers the door wearing only underwear? Just rol with it and ask when the family will be home. What do you do when that happens 2 times in one afternoon? Realize that these people have discovered how to deal with the heat... I'm traveling back to Bahia tonight! AGGHHH! STupid leadership conference, nah, it should be fun, really. Elder Eaton is in my district again! As well as Elder Jones. It's pretty cool, we are the oldest people in the zone. 18 months coming up...weird. New Year's was great! We went out to have an asado with some other missionaries and saw the fireworks. Then the day was pretty dead, but we handed out christmas/new year's cards to a rest home. The hospital was way far away, so we couldn't go there (that is what elder Christianson and I did for christmas, go to the hospital and visit the people there) Elder Guevara-There is the menos activo family, it looks like they are drinking'' EW (spiritual impression) ''We shouldn't go over there'' EG ''Nope, we should not'' Turn in unision. I like elder Guevara, and he's teaching me to write in Japanese. Growing pains, you're right. They hurt. The ones in the mission seem to be the really fast ones as well. I learned to stop asking for patience... Thanks for letting me know how everyone is at home, btw, I really love hearing how you are all doing. I recieved another email from someone who recieved their call to the mission, they found the blog. You are quite impressive with that blog Mom. Well, I need to finish this up and go find a new apartment, wish us luck. Until next week, this is Elder Wartena signing off. I love you all Your missionary son and brother Elder Joshua Wartena
I just can't believe how fast the second half of this mission is flying by. Shocking as it may seem, I actually want it to slow down just a bit for him. When something wonderful is happening I often wish time would go slower so we could savor the moment a little longer.
Another missionary in our ward arrived home this past week. Oh, he looks so happy and so grown up. His mom just comments how different he is, so manlike. I half to agree that he certainly has turned into a man. He is off to college tomorrow and the rest of his life. To hear these returned missionaries talk about looking for a wife just gets me giggling. What a difference two years can make in a life.
We shall end this entry with just one thought . . .