This is me opening my package!! Notice the 'Jessica knows MITT is IT!' pin!! I wear it around the house! Thanks mom!
Hello Family! Well.... I wil hit my 6 month mark in like... TWO DAYS!!!! I honestly can´t believe it... One third of my mission is gone!!!! Some days it feels like I have been gone for-ev-er and other days it feels like I just got here... So time is moving whether I like it or not! Things here are fine but transfers are next week and I think I am going to get transferred. I am actually really nervous about it, but this change will be good. I need to get away from English... My companion and I still talk quite a bit in English so it is kind of hard for me to learn Spanish when I can just say it in English faster. This week was pretty normal once again, I must be getting used to everything here so things "seem" normal when they aren't really. But a highlight was the cow foot soup that I ate on Friday.... Not the best soup I have ever had but it wasn´t as bad as the squid fingers I told you about a few weeks ago! It actually didn´t taste that bad, it tasted like.... a meaty soup with a tinge of lemon. But my mind couldn´t get over the cow hoof sitting in the middle of the bowl... so needless to say it was hard to swallow every spoonful. Another thing that I am getting pretty good at is cutting my meat with a spoon. People down here in Ecuador for some reason don´t believe in forks or knives... So they just press the side of the spoon as hard as they possibly can into this meat until the fibers of the meat separate. And then they scoop up some rice and the piece of meat that they fought with on their plate for a good 30 seconds and eat it like everything is normal. They would have a hard time cutting through a thick steak that dad grills. My mouth is watering just thinking about one of those steaks... I am kind of sick of rice and soup... This week we were supposed to have a baptism for Ignacion... But his family didn´t go to church this past week so only Ignacion could get baptized... Well when we went to visit them the next day we found out that his wife and his daughters don´t want to get baptized because they don´t feel prepared... (This not feeling prepared excuse is code for I just don´t want to get baptized....) Well we talked to them about it and asked his daughters if they still wanted to get baptized... They would look at their mom before they answered and then they would say "No... I want to get baptized with my mom." So that is really frustrating. Ignacion´s baptism was still scheduled for this coming Saturday but I didn´t feel right about him getting baptized alone. So I had been praying about it all week just to know what would be better... Postponing his baptism to see if his family changes their mind or just going through and having his baptism anyway. Well we decided to postpone it. Our Zone Leaders and District Leaders were FURIOUS with us but we felt like we needed to wait. We went back to his house on Thursday and asked Ignacion and his family if they would like to be baptized the following week. Ignacion said yes they would, his wife was still a little unsure but agreed. Then his daughters said that they didn´t want to get baptized.... FREAK KIDS!!!! What do we have to do now!!! During this lesson however Ignacion had recently taken a shower and he started coughing so badly that I was afraid I would have to brush up on my 8th grade CPR skills. He was coughing really really bad... So bad that when he would take a breath it sounded like he was rattling on the inside. He then mentioned when his coughing fit was over, "That is what I get bathing with cold water!" (Here is a side note... This guy is super duper sick... He coughs all the time and he is really weak because of it. When my companion asked, "Do you have Tuberculosis?????" he told us no... so hopefully this guy is telling the truth.) Luckily he didn´t die during our lesson, but when Hermana Romero and I left the lesson we then started talking about how his baptism will probably kill him! There is no hot water valve to any of the baptismal fonts here. How were we going to tell Ignacion that the water for a baptism is cold? We then decided that we were going to have to heat the water for his baptism... There is no way we are going to make this guy get baptized in cold water. So we called around and asked if anyone had those cool water heaters that you just stick into the water and they heat it up but no one did... We then asked if they sell those things here in the Peninsula... They don´t even know what those things are... So we are going to have to boil water at the church and pour it into the font right before this guys baptism. One of Ignacion´s daughters and his wife went to a baptism before and they knew that the water was cold. Well when we told his daughters that the water for the baptism would be warm they agreed to get baptized... "Come on in boys... the water is fine" Say that like Delmar from Oh Brother Where Art Thou. Oh my gosh I almost forgot this crazy tidbit! So Ignacion´s wife and little girls all have lice. Whenever we go over to their house they all are scratching their heads like crazy and I always see his wife scratch her head for a few seconds and pull something out of her hair, she then examines what is in her fingers and then squishes it. It is creeeeeeeeeppppyyyy!!!!! My head is itchy just thinking about it!!!!! Well during one of our lessons she had taken her hair out of it´s pony tail and was brushing her hair with a comb. But she wasn´t just combing her hair, she had a towel draped over her lap and would swipe the comb through her hair, examine the comb and pull out bugs and squish them on the towel... I was so nervous that one of the bugs was going to jump in my hair... But what was worse was our lesson was about to end and I would have to still say goodbye to her... And the way we say goodbye is by kissing cheeks... With our heads that close together I am sure to have one of those blood sucking bugs jump right into my hair!!!! As we were asking them if there was anything we could do for them they said no and we closed with a prayer... During the whole prayer I was praying so hard that she would put her hair up into a pony tail before I had to kiss her cheek..... As we all said Amen I looked up and she had put her hair up during the prayer!!!!!!! The Lord really does hear and answer our prayers!!! Well I need to wrap this up... sorry this email is so stinking short!!! This week was pretty normal! Hope you all are doing well and I heard that Batman was awesome!!! So jealous!!! Love you more than I miss you!!! Love Hermana Welch (Jess)
Here I am grinding corn for Tortillas! It was very hard!! But it was fun!