In answer to your questions, mi compañera es fantasticó! We get along great and she even used to swim too, though she also played water polo and did gymnastics. Yup, I already love her. (Her name is Hermana Capps and she's from Apple Valley, CA. I've never heard of the place, but maybe you have. She's also 21 and graduated this last spring semester from BYU-I in exercise science--she wants to go into dietetics.) I really like her. Also, we're both going to Chicago West so that's pretty awesome.
So far the language is pretty great. Mi compañera tells me that I ought to be in the intermediate class (we're in the beginning class) but I like our distrito. I help out the elders y las hermanas with pronunciation and conjugation and grammar. I told them I'm sorry if I'm being a know-it-all, and their response was "Well you are!" But they appreciate my help, so I feel better about that. Side note, our teachers are Hermano Villalobos and Hermana Pérez. Hmo. Villalobos must've recently returned from his mission because one of our hermanas has a friend that was on the same mission as Hmo. Villalobos and her friend only got back in May, I think. So that is pretty cool. I do feel like most of our class has been review for me (other than the Gospel vocab) but it's okay. It's a really good review for me and I'm sure it'll come in handy.
Our first full day they gave us basically credit cards with pesos on them (120) and we hermanas get 120 más cada semana. So I don't think I'll need real pesos, though they are very pretty. There hasn't been anything I've needed (wait, I kind of lied. I need you to send me my slip(s). Think you could get those to Josh in some sort of wrapping that won't embarrass him? They're in my closet on the shelves built into the left side. Should be easy to find....I think I have two or three. I won't need the longest one though. None of my skirts are that long....) and I'm planning on getting a shirt that says "CCM" on it--because everyone who goes to México needs proof that they went, right? Yeah. Also, there are these sweet scripture cases en la tienda but they're 480 pesos....so we'll see if I end up having enough.
Also, for sure the México Ciudad templo is closed for the duration of my stay in this city. But we do get to visit the visitors center with our distrito sometime before we leave.
Yes, my luggage did make it so I haven't been wearing the same three clothing items for a week. It was fine. I've included a picture of all of us on the plane from Dallas to México. (Hopefully. Sounds like MyLDSMail kinda sucks with sending pictures...)
And I LOVE the food here. Although it might be doing weird things to/in my digestive tract, it tastes delicious. So far, my favorite thing they've served is called tacos duranos (?). They were basically taquitos, but then we dipped them in crema de poblano (I have no idea what that is) and it was delicious.... The most random thing we've eaten was this one day for breakfast we had refried black beans and mozzarella cheese baked onto a piece of bread.....ya. Our zone líderes told us that one morning they served peaches and hotdogs. On the same plate. So there are some weird things....yesterday was American food all day though--we had hamburgers for lunch and corn dogs for dinner. Tonight is pizza night and our líderes de zona told us it is THE best. So that's something to look forward to.
I'm also gonna try to include a picture of our district, and hopefully next week I can get a picture of our zone from Hermana Powell. En Domingo, we all decided that we would wear orange on Lunes, so we all matched all day. There were so many comments about it....but it was great. I'll include the picture we took.
Uh, what else is there....? I'm not really sure what to tell you, so you should keep asking questions.
Oh, these are the names of those in mi distrito: En la pictura, us hermanas from left to right are Hermana Powell, me, Hermana Capps, and Hermana Haws. Other than Hma Capps and I, our entire distrito is going to Nicaragua. Same mission even. Then, los elderes, from left to right, are Elder Ruiz, Elder Jensen, Elder Bronson, Elder Hoffman, Elder Olsen (nuestro líder de distrito), y Elder Bradbeer. I think I've got the best distrito of all time. Seriamente. They're fantastic. We have a blast every day. The first couple días, we were quiet but then we all opened up and now we get hardly any real studying done....which is slightly irritating, but está bien.
Uh, oh, here's a picture of me on Domingo. I tried looking nice--but my hair is already driving me nuts. I've gotta figure something out. What would you do if I just chopped it off and came home with a pixie cut? Just curious. Because the thought has repetamente crossed my mind, and I've seriously considered it...
I'm not sure how many more photos will fit in this email, (if these will all fit even) so I think I'm gonna end this and try sending the rest of my photos in another email. Or multiple emails, as the case may be.
Oh, momma, will you photo copy the short hand Grandma took from my setting apart and send it to me? I meant to get that before I left but....that didn't happen.
If I think of anything else to say before my time is up, I'll let you know as I send these pictures.
Con Mucho Amor,
P.S. Psych. You get one picture per email.... Lo siento.
Road from the airport to la CCM en este bús. (People en México Ciudad drive like maniacs......)
Us four hermanas share a sala together--and a distrito. So far, it is working out great.
Lechita. What about this is NOT cute? Nada, I tell you. Nada. I mean, look at la vaca....
Mexican Independence day is next Monday. And there will be a celebración! In the meantime, we had this jello stuff. It tasted like a car air freshener, but it looked cool...also, the comedor is all decorated for the holiday. I'm hoping to get a picture before they take it all down.... próxima semana.
Also, if you wouldn't mind, would you find my soccer sweats and send them with Josh as well? I believe they are in my yellow swim bag. If not.....then somewhere in/on the shelves in my closet, or up overhead. Sorry, I'm not more positive on that.
There's me. En Domingo. Looking all awkward. Sorry Momma.....but hey, at least I took a picture with my tag.
Hermana Powell and I. Eating our ice cream sandwiches. Seriamente, some of la comida they serve here es delicioso....this was definitely one of them. In case you couldn't tell..
Our distrito, all dressed en naranja. (I'm wearing Hermana Powell's shirt...) Aren't we adorable? Also, sorry the descripción of quién es quién is in the first email....but ya. Here we are!
Our distrito líder and his companion (Elder Olsen and Elder Ruiz). Oh my. When the other districts in our zone came and introduced themselves, one was insane. But Elder Heart/Hart leaned over and told me to wait, that our distrito will be like their's soon. I didn't really believe him....but now I do.
Us four Hermanas, pointing to our missions.... yeah. There wasn't much room for the elderes, plus Elder Jensen wasn't feeling good. So we were short two elderes.
Hma Capps and I, pointing to Chicago West. In case it wasn't obvious.
Just me. Aren't I (insert adjective here)?
And this is our street. Sorry, I don't have a picture of just our casa.... próxima semana, I will. Esperamente. It's purple. We're casa numero 16..
Just remembered! On Sunday, since it was Fast Sunday, we fasted Saturday dinner and then breakfast. (I was famished by the time lunch rolled around....I never get enough to eat because I eat so slow! Curses....) During sacrament meeting, which was just with our branch, and it was only in Spanish, (this sentence will drive me nuts but I'm trying to move on), and they had told us previously that all of us needed to have testimonios ready because there would be time for everyone to go--of course that didn't happen. However, four of us from our distrito all got up. Hma Haws, Elder Olsen, me, and Elder Hoffman. I was kind of surprised at the number of missionaries from other districts that still wrote down their testimonios. Granted, there were only two, maybe three, but still. It surprised me. I bore mine without writing anything down, but, like I told my distrito, I bore my testimonio en español at my farewell, so I've had some practice. I wasn't planning on saying anything though. I could feel the spirit the whole meeting, but I thought to myself, "No, I don't need to get up and say anything. It's fine." Next thing I know my heart is literally pounding and I can feel it throughout my entire cuerpo. So I thought again, "Okay, okay! I'll do it..." So I did. Apparently that is the best way for the Lord to get my atención. I didn't even feel like anything I said was great, but ah well. I could hardly look at the audience (can't remember the right english word) because Elder Dahl, one of our zona líderes was smiling like a maniac. He is awesome. His district leaves next week or week after next but we are already gonna miss them. It must be next week, because contemplating next Sunday....no bien. (Sunday we say goodbye formally to all those who leave the next couple of days. We sing God Be With You Til We Meet Again, which isn't my favorite song at all, but it is beautiful en español. Although, all of the himnos are beautiful en español.
Okay. I think that's everything I've got time for.
Love you lots!
- Hermana DeBuck
Also, mi compañera is still emailing, so here are some more picturas I just took. There's this little model map thing of the campus. I took a picture of the side of the campus with all the buildings (the other side has a track and soccer fields and whatnot), then a close up of our casa.
Also, in case you're wondering, the weather here is perfect. I think it's supposed to be the rainy season, but while it does rain every day it's usually not for very long. It's usually warm without being hot, and it cools off nicely.
I wish I had a picture of the mountain next to us (there are actually mountains!) because there's a white letter B painted on it and it reminds me of our G, plus you can see all the cute little casas on the mountain, in all their bright colors. (The B was for the CCM before it was the CCM. I don't remember what the school was called but there's "B de A" on a bunch of things, so I know that has to do with it. When it was a school, every year the students would hike the mountain and paint the rocks so you could see the B really well, but not it's the CCM and we don't get to do that.
They did tell us how many acres the campus is (I wanna say it was like 200 maybe 2000 acres. I honestly don't know how big an acre is....) and that we have I think half as many missionaries as there are in the Provo MTC. So, kinda, sucks for them. Plus, if we want, we can take chairs outside and have our meetings or study time on the grass or wherever we want really. Missionaries in Provo aren't allowed even to contemplate taking chairs outside. Really, everything is just super chill here. It's great.
I will say, these keyboards are super weird. I'm gonna get used to these and then get back to the states and have to relearn American keyboards. These ones here are nice for accents and stuff though. American keyboards, not so much.
Oh, I was supposed to tell you this: if you get the hankering to send a package, you can do so through this website. I believe it's missionarypackagemx.com. Yeah, almost positive. 99% sure that is correct. Not like I'm saying I need a package, but should you so desire, it is possible. For example, you could even somehow send Krispy Kreme donuts through this site. (Krispy Kremes are Hermano Villalobos' favorite pastel. Learned that the first día de clases cuando we all introduced ourselves.) But, right now the main thing is that I get a slip. I could buy one at la tienda, but I don't want to buy another. And I'd rather just have you somehow get that to me through Josh....haha if he's got room in his suitcase(s)....I'm hoping. It wouldn't be such a big deal but it's a CCM rule: we're supposed to wear slips with everything.....so I have kinda been breaking that rule for the past week. Except we didn't find out until Friday I think, so......yeah. I'm sorry. I'm a sinner. But I will repent and then begin wearing a slip for the next five week. Holy cow. Five weeks! Crazy, right....? In no time, I'm sure, we'll be back in the States and in Illinois.
Well, mi compañera is all ready so I better sign off.
Love you again!
Con Mucho Amor,
Su Hija Amorosa,
Here's our casa. Sort of.
Lastly, here's one more picture of mi compañera y yo.
At lunch just now, we ate some crazy stuff....I was gagging. We tried this fruit the natives call guayaba, I think, and the center/pit thing is super big so I got some of the seeds in my mouth.....ugh. Disgusting. And we tried some jugo stuff that tasted like tea, I guess. (I wouldn't know from experience but mi compañera has accidentally had it.) And then this jello stuff. The top looked kind of like flan but the bottom was that weird car freshener tasting stuff, plus some "goodies" stuck in there (walnut, cherry, etc.). I did try cauliflower the other day in some soup and I liked it. I've also tried zucchini that was delicious, and super soft. And I try not to pick out onions and things but when there are chunks of onions/tomatoes....can't do it.
Well, I was hoping you'd have gotten this by now, but I guess not. So I'll here back from you next week! Hope work is going well.
Love, Hermana DeBuck