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Monday, August 6, 2012

Una Semana Muy Loca

Here is the quick lowdown. This week has been pretty interesting and abnormal, just so you know!
I had a great nap today, by the way, and hope you all are having a great Monday. Mondays are probably my favorite day, whereas they are probably just a routine day for you all. Anyways, thanks for the letters, and here is what I have to say:

Dog Bite. So yeah, dogs roam the streets, serve as property guards, live in the woods, and just hang out together in groups all throughout Argentina. Anyways, so I went up to a house to perform a standard contact. Right now, we have a small investigator pool and are trying to enlarge it a little each week even though we have little time while juggling our office duties. So I walk up through some long, untamed grass just like we do all the time, not thinking much about anything. Elder Hull was right behind me, waiting for me to talk to the person who lived there. All of a sudden, a dog jumped from behind a tree, followed by three others. Normally they run up and just sniff us, as if it were no big deal. What I didn´t know was that this dog belonged to the house as a guard dog and had slipped under the fence. It came up to me running, skidded on its paws, and turned its head sideways. I jumped, but its jaw locked on my shin, which really scared me! It honestly took a full three seconds to realize what was happening. I shook my leg fast and then ran like half of a block away, scared for my life. Elder Hull laughed at me, and luckily, it wasn´t anything too serious. I wasn´t even bleeding since it didn´t penetrate deep or even hardly break the skin since it was my shin. It still hurt pretty bad, though. It felt similar to being kicked in the shin during a soccer game. Ouch! I talked to the mission president´s wife, which was fortunate since we live in the same place, and she helped me. She also called the area doctor, and after describing the circumstances and everything, everything was fine. So that´s my story. I won´t lie. I totally screamed like a girl and my heart was beating like a thosand beats a second. Good thing it wasn´t a german shepherd/vicious dog!

Saturday Morning. So we continued our investigator hunt on Saturday morning. We started knocking houses at like 10:00 am, which should work out fine, right? Wrong. haha. We touched the doorbell, waiting some, pressed the doorbell again, and waited some more. No answer. Then finally a 40-year-old man emerges wearing nothing except briefs! As you can imagine, this disturbed both me and my companion. He yelled some pretty interesting Spanish, chuck-full of swear words, bascially saying that he had slept hardly at all and that we had woken him up. It was kinda funny. He just had walked outside his door in basically nothing, and it was like 10:15 in the morning, usually a time when we never have problems contacting houses! Just so you know, it currently holds the record as the funniest contact for me. Most missionaries have some pretty hilarious ones by the end of their mission, and this one will get added to my list :).

Cultural Note. Clapping/applauding hands is extremely common here. Close to half of the houses in Argentina do not have a doorbell installed. To make matters a little more difficult, fences enclose almost all houses for safety reasons. So more often than not, a person can´t knock since the safety fence blocks the door. So if you can´t find a doorbell, you only have one other option, which is clapping! This is completely normal, and I felt weird doing it at first. It is really just part of the culture. Most people always leave a window open, just so they can hear the clap. So for my whole mission, about 80% of my contacts or even when I would just go to a member's house for lunch, we would get their attention by applauding outside the fence and waiting until they came through the door to let us in through the fence. Cool, huh?

My advanced Spanish grammar book came through the mail. I now have more resources to understand people better and to help prepare me more for my exams when I come back!! Wahoo!

Alright, we plan to play soccer this afternoon. We will see if it actually happens. Thanks for your support and everything. I really do enjoy your letters and funny comments.

Elder Jones

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