Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Happy 13 Months!

Hey guys!
Sorry for the delay.

As a heads-up to future weeks, there's a high possibility that the internet here will be down weekly every Monday. It really sucks.

There's only two internet companies in all of Nicaragua: Claro and Movistar. Of the two, Claro is much faster, but it's also the ONLY internet company that Puerto has for now, so when it shuts down, ALL internet shuts down. I don't want to worry you guys with any lack of emails, so here's the heads-up.

I'm sending a recording in this email; it's a bit shorter than I would've liked but I hope you guys like it.

I love you all.

[Mom Note: Zach is now getting comfortable with sending audio files. To access, click one of the links below. It will open a new page in your browser. At the upper-left of that new page, click DOWNLOAD. You should be able to open the downloaded file in your Audio Player or Media Player (whatever that is called on your computer) and listen to his quirky adventures. ENJOY!]


Quick summary of this week:
  • Tapeworm issue
  • Puerto zone improvements 
  • Upcoming visit from an Apostle 
  • Hope to resupply 
Nica Elders in Puerto and their pseudo facial hair issues.

Baggie of water

You cut open one corner...
...and drink (and maybe a little drips off your chin--it's okay.)

Monday, July 20, 2015

Moving Forward

[Mom Note: Zach is now getting comfortable with sending audio files. To access, click one of the links below. It will open a new page in your browser. At the upper-left of that new page, click DOWNLOAD. You should be able to open the downloaded file in your Audio Player or Media Player (whatever that is called on your computer) and listen to his quirky adventures. ENJOY!]




Quick summary of this week:
  • Parasite
  • Baptism
  • Got his birthday package


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Random Title!

Hey all!
Things are definitely starting to look up around here. I've included my first few recordings in a long time, hope you enjoy them!

-Zach
[NOTE: Two audio files linked below. Let me know if you have trouble with the links. -Mom]





QUESTIONS

1)Was this week better? Or still more “politickin’?”
* A mix of both. Still turned out okay, though. Lots better.

2) How are you and your companion getting along? What are his quirks? How are you similar/different?
*We are getting along fine. We don't actually have a lot in common. Maradiaga is the younger of two sons and lives in Copan, Honduras. He's a big flirt, even if he doesn't try too hard. It might help us get some more investigators. Still not sure on that yet. I'll send a recording for more on my CompaƱero.

3) Did you fully recover from your “birthday surprise” illness? Any lingering effects?
*Yes, I've fully recovered.

4) Any more ocean baptisms?
*No, unfortunately. The general rule here is that you have to baptize in the font, unless it's an emergency.

5) Have you gotten our birthday package YET?! I hope that helps pick up your mood!
*Nope! Our ZL's actually don't like bringing back/asking for packages. I've had to resort to asking the mission secretaries for help. They informed me that packages were sent out today by bus to Puerto. So, still waiting.

-Zach

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Big Changes!! Not Really!!

Hey all!
So changes happened today. Only people leaving are Hermana Alan, Hermana Cruz, and Elder Choque.
The Hermanas are ending their missions, but Choque got the short end of the stick and is getting taken out of Puerto to go to Chinandega. I'm bummed about that. I really loved having him here. He only had 3 transfers here (4.5 months).

We got three newbies coming to town, but nobody's quite as enthusiastic as they used to be.

Puerto as a zone has been doing worse performance-wise in these past few months. Presidente is getting worried. Personally, I feel like what we once were, all 26 of us on this island of a zone, no longer exists. We used to be so tight-knit, we called ourselves a family.

Now we have two ZL's whose unfortunate pride replaces their love for the missionaries.
We are no longer a close group, but a handful of 26 missionaries who happen to know each other's names. The Puerto Zone that once was is slowly dying.

I am trying my darndest to ignore the politics of the leaders (there's really no other way to describe it- "politickin'") and help my district out, but it's starting to get pretty rough here.

Don't worry about it. I'm sure this is part of the Lord's ways in making me learn patience and humility.

I guess it's just a rough patch in the mish right now. Oh well. I've gotten through them before; don't worry now.

I'm glad things are going well back home. I miss you all.

Shoutout to Alex, Yes I am getting you emails AND recordings. Thanks for both! I really like them.

-Zach

QUESTIONS

1) What would you say are your biggest struggles right now?
*My biggest struggles at this point are twofold. One, I am trying to find the same kind of resolve and enthusiasm that I once possessed at the start of my mission. Two, I am doing my best to look past the "politics" of the mission and do my job here in the Lord's service. I hate missionary politics.

2) What are your biggest joys?
*My biggest joys are finding investigators who are genuinely interested in the Restored Gospel and all the blessings it has to offer. I also take great joy in reading your guys' emails, and I am super pumped at having completed a year in the mission.

3) What are some unusual superstitions that Nica’s have?
*I will talk more about superstitions in a recording. There's actually a ton of interesting stuff.

4) Any more drunk people issues? Those are some powerful stories.
*Every. Single. Day. There's no real "weekend" attitude here, so we see tons of drunk bums on the streets everyday. The pervading culture is to go to work when you don't have any money, but to spend it all on alcohol and stuff (and not go to work) when you do have money.

5) How’s the water situation? Do you ever buy a drink in a plastic bag? Can you send us a picture?
*Water is fine. I will send pics next week.

Love you!
-Zach