Sunday, August 17, 2014

Bem-venidos de Rivera!--August 4, 2014

Hey guys how are you doing!? Im sorry to hear about dad, and I may or may not have chuckled a bit to myself. I know that sounds terrible, but just play that back in your mind and you will get what I mean;) Also because sometimes I feel a bit old at 6:30 in the morning getting off of my top bunk and trying to get to the ground without breaking anything. (Myself, my comp, the bed.....)
But hey! Im in Rivera! It is crazy here and I am basically going through Uruguay/Brazil culture shock again. My comp is Elder Harbold from Pleasant Grove and he has 7 months in the mission. I am his fourth comp. He is such a stud!! He is really tall too, just a little shorter than me, and really gringo, so we look pretty funny walking through the streets together. My district is two other elders, Farnsworth and Izquierdo, and two hermanas, Ventura and Amarilla. They are really fun and we actually had a really good district meeting this week and I am feeling really good so far about it! Our area is a neighborhood outside of Centro, and it is a small ward split with two other elders that live with us. We share a chapel with another ward (WHAT???) but our ward is only like 30 people usually. It was actually really good, just different from my ward in Cerro. But I am the sunday school teacher of the 14-18 year olds, which is basically 6 young women and 1 young man, so it was interesting but I really liked it and honestly just love teaching. We have a ton of work to do here because there is only one investigator progressing and their story is crazy...we will see if they are going to be able to move through some serious challenges they are facing. But she went to church with he daughter this week which was awesome! Her name is Paola. I will let you in on some more deets next week. But my comp says that in the last two weeks all of their super good investigators moved away. So we are basically starting from scratch. But yesterday we had a super good planning session and Elder Harbold is super enthusiastic which is something that I havent had for a long time, and we are both feeling super pumped about this next change!!
Haha but yeah, Rivera is right on the border of Brazil, and it is a open border so we can go into Brazil no problem. We actually go almost every Pday from what Ive heard because everything is super cheap over there. We are going in a little bit, so I will let you know how that goes. Thanks to the border here the majority of the people speak portuñol. (Portuguese and Español) Right when I was feeling like I was in the clear on spanish, I get here where they speak the craziest mix of languages. For the first two days I felt like a new missionary again, not really understanding anything. But it is amazing how fast the lord will help you. I dont really know all the words, but I understand what they are trying to say, and that really makes me feel good. I am reading the O Livro de Mormón in portugues a bit, and that is fun, it is easy to read but harder to listen too and understand. But hey, we are gettting there!!

I am also calming down a little bit because here it isnt dangerous at all basically. The first night I was like, ¨Hey why dont we lock the gate? Or the house? Or have dogs or take the keys with us or have barbed wire or not use backpacks?¨ So it was a bit of a transition, but Im really liking it so far!!! Vamo arriba la celeste!!!
Todo mi amor,

Elder Degn

ps. Happy aniversary Mom and Dad! 24 years aint too shabby. Sure seems like that has flown by... Love you guys tons! Thanks Mom for consenting to marry Dad. It worked out pretty well eh?


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