Wednesday, March 19, 2014

First Week in Assomada

March 17, 2014
Mickey, who was baptized the week after Nate left Praia

This is the first letter from the new area, Assomada! Last week I was transferred to serve as a zone leader with Elder Fernandez.  So how that transfer worked, was I got in a Hyass with three other Elders, also going to Assomada.  A Hyass is like one of  those big vans they have in America, but a lot different than those big vans we have in America haha.  When you are in Praia, these big hyass things drive around, and people always yell out of them, "Assomada, Assomada!" and Its super loud, and annoying.  And we joked the whole day Monday that later that day I was actually going to get on that Hyass and go to Assomada.  It was funny because we had heard so many people yell that everyday when I was in Praia, and it was funny actually getting in one.  But we called one, and two guys came running at us like linebackers, and just grabbed out suitcases and threw them into the back of this huge van thing.  So Elder Cruz, Conduane and I got in the hyass and took the hour ride up to Assomada.  So Praia in on the far south end of the island of Santiago, and Assomada is dead center.  So we took that ride up the mountains, where my area is.  It was an hour, and a super pretty ride!  Its the dry season right now, but it is still insanely green, and its pretty!  I got a little car sick, but it was sweet. RIght when I got there we had lessons, and I feel like we have been in lessons ever since. Elder Fernandez is awesome! He schedules comprimissos like every 45 minutes, and we kinda run around like crazy all day, but its super good.  Our house is by far the nicest thing I have lived in on the mission.  We have hot showers, and we both have our own bathrooms so that's super good! 

By far the coolest part about the mission is the monkeys that are downstairs!  There is this big cage, and there are four monkeys, and they are so dope! I go play with them every time we leave the house, Ill try to send some pics!

The biggest thing about this place is that it is freezing!  We are up in the mountains, and it was just super cold! My first day I was absolutely freezing, I slept with like a sweatshirt, pants, and every blanket I could find  But I'm getting used to it, and I'm sure in relation to Utah its super hot.  I just got used to that nice Praia weather haha.  This is by far the coldest place in the mission, so it will never get worse haha.  It is the first time in my mission that I am living in a two Elder house, and I would be lying if I said that I wasn't a little more lonely these days.  But overall I love it up here, and its super sweet.  
Our house is literally right next to the church, and the store is super close to our house as well, which is nice!  
We also had a couple baptisms last week.  Dulcy, Jasmine (mom and daughter), and Maria (19) and they were super sweet! 
Dulcy, Jasmine, Elder Jarvis and Elder Fernandez

Its really nice because my district leader in Elder Smith.  He was my Zone leader when I started my mission, and he was my Zone leader my third  transfer as well, and we are pretty close.  I look up to him a ton, and he helps me a lot with he language.  He is absolutely incredible at Creole and Portuguese, and he teaches me new things every time we talk.  I actually had the chance to do a division with him on Sexta, Friday, and we went to Tarafall, the other side of the island to do an interview.  So as of right now I have literally seen the whole island of Santiago!  Tarafall is super pretty, and I'm doing another division with them this week, so I will get to see that area a little but more.  It was super fun to get to hang out with Elder Smith and do those interviews tho! We took and hour hyass ride, and just saw the island and talked about everything.  He is from Florida, and he is super sweet.  He is dying soon, (finishing his mission) and he is pretty trunky (ready to go home).  We always joke that he is gonna be kissing girls pretty soon here while I'm living in Africa! But there really is no other place I would rather be! 
Also Sister Gates is in District and Zone.  I think she knows Deb Cowen?? 

Also another cool thing happened in church.  First of all, our ward is huge! We had 158 people in church, and that's a ton!  It was sweet to see so many members in one place!  Also during church I got to translate for a man that is from Nigeria that only speaks English.  It was super fun, and a really good experience.  There may have been some parts that I kinda made up, but people speak Creole, and the Creole here is different than it is in Praia.  I'm still learning the Creole here, but its kinda similar to the Creole in praia.  I never really speak it unless I'm just joking around with members, but I can understand most of it haha.  Were not suppose to speak it, so we try not to haha. 
We also have our interviews with President on Wednesday, and after that I am doing a division in Tarafall.  All the Elders in the Zone will come to Assomada for the interviews, so it will be nice to see all those guys!  
I would be lying if I said I hadn't thought about March Madness basketball all week, and that kinda makes me homesick because its my favorite.  But I love what I am doing and I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.  Its the best uniform Ill ever wear!
Hope you are all doing well, I love hearing from all of you guys so keep writing!
Love Elder Jarvis
In the blue shirt is Zito, Nate's first baptism when he arrived in Achada Traz

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