Am I in Brazil?????
I guess so :)
There are beautiful trees and tons of buildings everywhere. The temperature is amazing and not nearly as cold as I thought it would be. I'm colder in the classrooms cause the elders have the AC blasting at 20 degrees C (or something like that...its just really cold) and the food is really tasty here! Lemme just compare a couple of things to Provo.
1. The food is better. its prepared fresh everyday and is awesome. freshly made juices from unknown fruits, delicious chicken every meal and rice and beans obviously. Oh and they make the most amazing mini loaves of bread! I have two every morning for breakfast, they always feel warm in my hand. amazing stuff people.
2. The rooms and beds are better! I sleep like a baby here haha and my Brazilian roomies are the greatest! they help us with Portuguese all the time and have memorized the phrase "I like you" in English and say it with a high pitched voice. makes me smile every time. one sister is engaged and the other has a serious boyfriend. its great to hear about their stories :)
3. Physical activity here is better! the track is tiny and you have to do 5 laps before doing anything else but its really helped me run a little more then in Provo, I also love playing volleyball with the Hispanic elders and sisters. The sisters try so hard but they just have no idea how to hit the ball. I've successfully helped one sister serve correctly and now she adores me :) what can I say, I'm meant to coach! just kidding.
4. No pictures or cameras except for pday. I can't take any pictures unless its inside the CTM and on my pday. which is alright. I don't wanna look like a tourist. except, get this! two sisters have told me I look Brazilian! pretty stoked about that, unless that's a bad thing. not sure, I'll let you know later if that is.
5. Everyone HAS to be in the ctm choir. Its hilarious! all the sisters sit in the front 3 rows and the rest of the elders in the back. A senior couple here at the CTM are in charge of this and she is awesome! super hilarious and knows just enough Portuguese to lead it all. I love hearing them sing, even if they cant hold a tune! music is the best!
6. Its way more strict here! specifically concerning speaking in Portuguese because they think its sad if we talk in English. Its hard to explain but they have super high expectations for us. In our district we have had a teacher call us out a couple of times reminding us that we are here to teach in Portuguese not in English. anyway, I appreciate these reminders :) and because of this we had an English fast yesterday which was very difficult but showed me how much Portuguese I knew!
7. There are about 200 missionaries here compared to 2000 over in Provo :)
I'm done with comparing the mtcs and will just chat now. Lessons are going well. I feel like we are always in class preparing for them and then I forget everything I was just practicing! We are also doing TRC which is great! lessons with members. This Friday, in about 2 days we are going proselyting! I am obviously terrified. I just want to memorize the line "free book"
cause each of us has 3 BoMs to give out.
Oh good news! Sister Habel is here! yay! Saw her today and it was great! Sadly we aren't in the same district or branch but I will see her occasionally. Today we went to the Sao Paulo temple and it was amazing! A little smaller then I thought it would be but still the house of the Lord. since there was so many missionaries they held the session in English. It's a beautiful temple, and I can't believe I'm basically in my missiona already! the whole time we were driving I thought, is this my mission???? such cool stuff. In the celestial room, right before we left, I looked up at the chandelier (very pretty by the way) and noticed one crystal was purple while the others were white. It made me laugh because I had a comforting thought that I might be some crazy purple person, but I'm still a part of God's chandelier (a part of His family) and he loves me for who I am no matter how I look or how I comprehend things, or work. He can see my intentions and see where my priorities lie. Weird metaphor, but I've been thinking deeply lately, hoping to continue my conversion as a member of this church.
Another time I felt a huge burst of comfort was during our devotional last night when seeing my Brazilian roommates putting their arms around other sisters. I'm not a very touchy person but when I see things like that I get all mushy because they are such sweet spirits! They are converts. They are people from other countries who have fought for what they believe in and are here on a mission! I feel of their love even when they aren't hugging me! I hope one day I can be like them. I hope I can love something so much, that people just know. I am a missionary of A Igreja de Jesus Cristo dos Santos dos Ultimos Dias. Life is great! thanks for all the support. Love you all, have a great
Sincerely Sister Oldroyd "the purple crystal sister"