Monday, February 25, 2013

Izalco Week 1

Que Tal Familia?
       Well its been a crazy week to say the least. Izalco Is very different from the states, a lot hotter and just different. I literally sweat from the moment I walk out the door to when I go to bed at night. I drink lots of water. Izalco is pretty poor, a lot of people have dirt floors, with cinderblock walls, but everyone here is really nice. I'm still not convinced that they speak spanish yet though, because they speak about 10000000 words per minute and drop of all of their s's. Our casa is also pretty sweet, no running water really. We have a spigot to fill up a water basin. We take showers by taking a bowl and dumping it on ourselves, it is actually really refreshing! I wish you could see my shoes at the end of the day, they don't even look black because of how much dirt they are covered in. But it is so beautiful, there are banana, mango, and coconut trees everywhere! Its way cool. the streets have alot of trash in them but thats just how it is down here i guess. Pupusas are awesome, Im keeping track of how many I have eaten and so far im up to 21, pretty pathetic, ill try harder this coming week. They are only $1 for 5 or 6 depending on where you go. So we can eat alot of pupusas for pretty cheap. Okay funny story, second day in the field and we are teaching this family with a newborn baby, and about halfway through the lesson the mom just started nursing, no big deal, that kinda threw me for a loop. People here are just different alot of the bolos (drunks) will just pee right on the side of the street. Speaking of the streets I think there are more chuchos (dogs) living in Izalco than people, they are everywhere! The bus drivers here are obviosly escapees from the local insane asylum because there is no way someone would hire someone so crazy to drive any sort of vehicle. But it puts a little excitement in my day every time I get on one.
         My companion is super awesome, hes Honduranian and doesn't speak much English so we really don't talk alot but I'm getting better. He's a hard worker and a good teacher. We had a baptism this sunday, it was a good way to start off the mission and we have a couple more investigators with dates, yesterday I extended my first invitation to a family to get baptized, it was a soft invitation but they have been super positive so far so I think (hope) they will say yes after some prayer.
        It sounds like you guys have had a fun weekend with Eli and Shih-Ping, It was funny to read each of your different takes on it. It was weird to see the pictures and realize that back home there is still snow and stuff on the ground, It is summer here in El Salvador, but the rainy season is coming up in the next month or so, so I´m in for a treat. I´m gonna try to send a couple pictures with my camera. hopefully you guys get them okay. In case you guys didnt hear, the church is creating 58 new missions as of july 1st, including two in idaho, and our mission is getting the ax. its being split into the El. Salv. Santa Ana missin and the San Salvador oeste/ Belice mission. kinda cool if I stay in Sonsonate or Sonzacate for two or three more transfers I will be moved to the new mission. I only have about 30-40 minutes to write so I hope that this email was sufficient for all of you. I am gonna try to figure out how to send pictures. I love you all and wish you the best!

Elder Schriever
PS my address is:
Mision El Salvador Santa Ana'Belice 
Apartado Postal #142, 
Santa Ana, El Salvador, C.A.

and if you send a package send it using USPS

typical streets here in Izalco
street in Izalco
central plaza of Guatemala city

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Note from El Presidente

Dear Schriever Family,

            We are happy to announce that your son, Elder Schriever, has safely arrived to our mission. The night of his arrival, we enjoyed getting to know him in a dinner at the mission home, and we can tell that he is a great missionary. We are grateful for his sacrifices and your sacrifices to allow him to be here. We pray that our Lord Jesus Christ will pour out his blessings upon your family. We are very happy to have your son with us and we know he will bless the lives of many people here in the great country of El Salvador.

He has been assigned to  the  Izalco area in the Sonzacate Stake. His companion is Elder N from Honduras. We expect to see many miracles from this companionship.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

In El Salvador

Well I have a minute or two to tell you guys that I'm alive and in El Salvador. I don´t know who my trainer is or where I am serving yet but as soon as I can I will let you know! Presidente should be sending you a picture sometime soon. Love you all and hope everything is okay!

Elder Schriever

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Guatemala MTC - Week 3

What’s poppin fam? It was so good to hear from all of you! This week has been pretty average, nothing too special.

Okay bad news first, one of my pairs of glasses broke and the other one (my older pair) the coating on one of the lenses is cracking and it makes it hard to see out of one side. Right now I am wearing contacts. I talked to the Mission Doctor here and he said that it’s fine to have contacts here as long as you don’t mind getting a little dust in your eye during the day and washing your hands before handling them.  Pssshhh a little dust in your eye? I have rocks for eyeballs! If it’s not too much trouble could you send contacts to me? It should be my mission address since I enter the field this Monday or Tuesday!!!!!

I am so excited, and a little nervous. An elder from the San Salv. had to come stay here at the Guat CCM for some visa troubles. I was talking to him and he said that the Salvadoreans eat Armadillo and Iguana all the time should be pretty... interesting? I can’t wait for that. I have also heard that they eat rat... could also be good.

Spanish is coming along okay, I can normally get the gist of what people are saying, but I can tell that the Latinos here slow down for us Nortes as they call us. People here get offended if they ask you where you are from and you say "America" because they are Americans too so it’s "Norte" or "Gringo" or "soy de los Estados."

In our room with Elder A and I are four other Latinos, they are pretty cool. The first day they didn’t go to bed till like 11.30 and woke up at around 5.30 I was a little worried but they have gotten more into the normal routine. They are super patient and willing to help me out with Spanish which is really nice.

Could you guys do me a favor, everyone here talk about "camel spiders" and we are trying to figure out if they are poisonous or not. Any help would be appreciated, it’s hard to find out stuff like that without being able to use the internet or have books. The Guatemala City temple was closed this week so we didn’t get to go and do that today, which was fine we just played basketball and lifted. It was perfect.

I’ve been trying to eat a little better since we can have ice cream with every lunch and dinner, they have a cheesecake flavored ice cream sandwich made by a brand called "Sarita" if I remember right, they are heavenly if you guys can get a hold of some do it. The milk is also UHT milk kind of like the Gossner stuff that the McGregor’s always have. But they have yogurt like that, it’s a little runnier than regular yogurt but it tastes the same its way good.

Anyway I was really glad to hear that you are all reading scriptures as a family, during this email I was going to make an addition everyone’s goals to read the scriptures as a family but you guys already took care of that! Keep up the good work! Hopefully next week I will be able to send some pictures, have more stuff to talk about, and have longer to write! Until then I love you all and wish you the best!

Elder Schriever

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Guatemala MTC - Week 2

¿que tal familia? 

Today we got to go on a little excursion into Guatemala City while they cleaned the CCM. We got to go to a acre sized relief map of Guatemala and talk about how it might be where the BoM took place pretty interesting. It was made in like 1906 by some dude on a horse with prospecting gear, amazing. You can probably find a picture on google images since I can't send them yet. Just google Guatemala Relief map and it should come up, it was pretty sweet!

Then we went to a market thing and walked around for about an hour or so. Dad I tried to find an Amanita but the group of missionaries I was with weren't really interested in the food section of the store. Maybe in El Salvador. The market was crazy, that's really the only word for it! Everyone would swarm you if you even looked interested in something at their stall, and they would kinda follow you for a little bit trying to get you to buy stuff. I didn't buy anything because I don't want to carry it around for another 22 months. But they did have some pretty sweet blankets, jackets, carvings etc. Some lady was selling marijuana paste which was different. You don't see that every day in the states.

Even the drive to the place was different. Traffic here is terrible. People just ignore traffic lines or there aren't any on the road. People don't walk on the sidewalk, and motorcycles just drive between cars and weave around traffic. But the people are really nice if you can stop and talk to them.

I got a cool picture in front of one of the main government buildings once I can send a picture I'm sure Dad will be able to find out exactly where it is on google earth but its a big government plaza somewhere on the north side of Guatemala city. I believe it was in zone 4 if that helps.

There were all these pigeons everywhere and for a quetzal you could get some food to throw to them. The only people who were entertained by the pigeons were 4 year old kids and 20 year old gringo missionaries. It was funny to see all of the weird looks we got. We stopped at a Wendy's and got lunch too. I don't think that a chicken sandwich with french fries has every tasted so good!

I found out that I will be leaving for El Salvador on the 19th which is a little earlier than I expected but I don't mind. I kinda want to be out in the field already. I got a dear elder from Anna this week. I don't know if anyone else sent them or not. If you did hopefully they will get here before I leave.

Happy birthday to Eli! I was actually kinda glad my P-Day was on Tuesday instead of Wednesday so I get to say that. What else... I'm not sure what else to write really. I hope you all have a great week and that everyone is happy and healthy. Keep working on your goals!

Love you all. Elder Schriever