January 8, 2010

Posted on 9:57 AM by Elder Messer | 0 comments

Well this week was kinda crazy down here in Ecuador. Everyone went crazy for New Years. Apparently it’s a really big deal here. They have a lot of very strange traditions. Let me explain… all over the place there were road blocks with men dressed as woman standing in the middle of the road dancing and asking for money. They put ropes up so that cars cant pass and they don’t let anyone pass until they give money to the guy dressed as a woman. If you don’t give them money they dance all around you and touch you and act like they are your girlfriend until you either give them money are walk far enough away. It was pretty crazy. Luckily we took taxis and buses everywhere so we didn`t have to pass them on foot all day. We only had to pass one on foot right in front of our house and I just gave him super dirty look like I was way pissed off to try and scare him away. Luckily he didn`t touch us or anything. We had to be in the house at 4 so we weren`t around when they were really drunk and crazy. There was a huge party right next to our house and they had music blasting really loud until about 1:30 in the morning. I managed to fall asleep at like 9:30 but all the fireworks and explosives woke me up at about 5 minutes to midnight so I got up and looked out the window to see everything that was going on. Another tradition here is that every makes these huge wooden and cardboard dolls and they burn them at midnight so when I looked out the window it was like there was a bonfire in front of every house. I kinda felt like I was in a war zone. It was all pretty surreal since I was still kinda half asleep.
I guess the spiritual story of the week would be that we did manage to find a new family.. The Garcia Salazar family. I was on divisions on Tuesday with elder choez and our 8 o´clock appointment wasn`t there. We had been contacting and knocking doors almost all day and usually there is almost no success contacting late at night because everyone always says that they are busy and that it’s too late. Anyway, I really didn`t feel like contacting more. But the options were to visit a member or keep contacting. I thought about the story that dad always tells about that family that he found in the last house on the street and I decided that the miracles always come in the last minutes so I decided that we would just keep contacting. At about 8:30 we knocked a door and they let us in and we taught the restoration to the whole family. They were really receptive and accepted a return appointment. Anyway it was a good experience to show the importance of working hard and being diligent until the last minute.
Other than that nothing else really exciting happened this week. It was a pretty slow week because no one was working so there were a lot more drunks in the streets and a lot of people went on vacation so we couldn`t teach that much. This upcoming week is gonna be pretty slow as well because we`re going to Quito for zone leader conference and leader meeting.
The picture is definitely PG-13 but I just wanted to show you how crazy new years was. This was a sign left over from the night before at one of the road blocks by our house. Basically what it says is that if you give the guy dressed as a woman 10 cents he will kiss you with his tongue, if you give him 25 cents he will do a strip tease, if you give him 50 cents he will kiss you on the cheek, and if you give him a dollar he will just say happy new year and let you go by…. Scandalous, I know… If I had to make a bible reference to this I would probably compare it to Sodom and Gomorrah… .

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