Troy’s Letter: December 29, 2009

11 01 2010

Yo familia,

So I don’t know if you got my letter that I sent home for Christmas or not, There’s some stuff in there about what we did on Christmas. But not everything. Um let’s see, after present opening and breakfast we listened to Elder L. Tom Perry speak about the gospels of Christ. Then we had a big Christmas dinner and later a talent show with a bunch of Elders and Sisters, which was pretty cool and hilarious at parts. It was a really nice break- no Spanish and no classes. It was a much needed day. Definitely different from any Christmas I’ve ever had before, but much more focused on Christ than I’ve ever been before. Then on Christmas night, we had a devotional by the famous church painter Greg Olsen- the guy who painted the cover of preach my gospel and a lot of other famous church paintings. It was really good to hear his thoughts on Christ and was a perfect ending to Christmas.

So before I forget there are two things that I need. First of all, I need some pictures. My district wants to see pictures of when I was fat and when I had long hair. So Savannah could you send me the beached whale on the stump picture and there’s a picture on my facebook where I have long hair. I’m wearing a bra haha over my sweater- it’s pretty hilarious. It was one of my old profile pictures. So savannah your job is to send those two pictures in a letter.

Secondly, I need my address of when I’m in the field. I need to send it to my friends in the field who are writing me and I forgot to bring it with me. If you could Dear Elder that to me that would be perfect.

So anyways, John comes tomorrow! I’m really excited I can’t believe that time has flown by so quickly. I will definitely keep an eye out for him, I’m pretty excited to see him again. I will definitely see him every now and again here I’m sure. We will take a picture or two together and send it home.

So I officially have less than 3 weeks till I leave. 3 weeks from yesterday. It’s really weird to think about. In 3 weeks, I will be in a nice South American summer. I have to admit, the cold and snow sucks when you can’t ski it and enjoy it. It’s very hard knowing that Sundance is less than 20 minutes away from where I am. In fact, it’s hard to keep focus here at all haha. I seriously can’t wait to leave. It’s not that I don’t like it here because my district is sweet and I have a lot of good friends. It’s just that I can’t wait to teach real people for once instead of teachers, volunteers, or other missionaries. I have to admit 12 hours a day of classroom learning does get old after 6 weeks. January 18th is going to be one of the best days of my life, haha.

But I was really touched to here that you guys are praying for me to learn Spanish. Your prayers and mine are definitely being answered. When I first got here, I could understand maybe 50 percent of what all the Spanish teachers here were saying. Today I can understand what they are saying perfectly most of the time and I can even respond with more than one word answers. Elder Smith and I are teaching in Spanish all the time now. We have like 15 appointments this week to teach lesson 1 in Spanish to different people. The Spanish is definitely coming. I’m so grateful for it as well. I know that I’m already a lot better off than a lot of people who leave the MTC for Spanish speaking missions. And I still have 3 weeks to better it. Of course, I know that when I get to Chile their Spanish will be completely different that the stuff I’m learning here. There’s a teacher from Chile who teaches the natives next to our class. He speaks totally different. Apparently, in Chile they don’t pronounce their s’s. So something like como esta would sound like como eta. Except for super fast. Everything is amazingly fast. He says otra vez (again) so fast and without the z so it sounds like “ochre” It’s crazy. And apparently Spanish is called castellano in Argentina and Chile. So if we go there and say I’m trying to speak Spanish they will laugh at us. There are many different countries and parts of South America, which have totally different Spanish accents. It’s funny because they all think that they speak true Spanish. Sometimes we will have to adjust our Spanish according to the country that our teacher or investigator is from. It’s really entertaining. All the Spanish teachers will make fun of each other because they are all from different countries and speak different accents of Spanish. I’m beginning to love the Spanish language. when I speak it just rolls off my tongue, it’s much easier to use than English and it makes much more sense than English- it’s much better put together. It even sounds so much better. Every sentence is like a song it’s awesome. Someone learning English would have so much trouble learning the language because we really have no rules for the way sentences are put together and pronunciation changes for letters in like every different word. I’m so grateful that I don’t have to learn English for my mission.

But anyways, that’s the Spanish. My friend who got here 3 weeks ago is leaving for South Africa because he only speaks English there. Punk. My friend Elder Lew is getting his Visa today for Brazil so he is leaving too. John will be the only person here I know soon from before the mish.
So I got the plastic cards for the memory cards I just didn’t even think about using them when I sent them home, but I definitely will next time. I absolutely loved the Christmas letter from the ward.  It was awesome. However they switched mine and Elder Taylor’s message from the bishopric, but it’s all good. Thanks for all of your love and prayers. Right now I just need to learn to have patience for the next three weeks, you think I would have some by now right? haha Well I love you all and I hope that your Christmas break is going awesome. I look forward to hearing from you this week.

Love, Elder Teeples




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