Wednesday, January 14, 2015

CTM - Week 4

So last Thursday, we went to the federal police station, which is like a huge 6-story building (so 7, for you Americans) a ways from the CTM. We went there to get fingerprinted so that we could get Brazilian ID and stay in the country, which would be cool. So when we got there, there was a line that went outside the building for at least a couple blocks, probably more, and there was more line all the way inside up to the fourth floor, which is I think where we went. So that took all morning.

Then on Friday, we went proselyting! So we walked from the CTM to a bus station with one of our instructors, took a bus to the big bus/metro station, and then gave out 4 Books of Mormon per companionship outside the station, since I guess we're not allowed to talk to people about church inside the station. Anyways, it was a pretty bad spot, since everyone was rushing around trying to catch busses and whatnot. It was easier to catch them when they were leaving. But we ran into an inactive member who talked to us for a while, and bought us Guaranas. Which was awesome. And he took a Book of Mormon to give to a friend. Another guy was sitting on the sidewalk, and he definitely looked like he did not want to talk to us. So that was pretty interesting. And then another guy talked to us for a good 25 minutes while we tried to convince him to take one; I'm reasonably sure he was saying that he didn't want to take one if somebody else could use it more and would actually pay for it (I'm not sure if he understood that they were free for anybody). Also, it was super hot the whole time, during actually proselyting and the two bus rides, so that was enjoyable. The whole experience was a little frustrating for me, since I couldn't really understand anyone that well on account of how quickly they talked. I could always say what I wanted to express, but a lot of the time I didn't know how to respond since I couldn't figure out what they were talking about. Oh well, we made it, and that's the only time we're doing it during our CTM stay.

On Saturday, our district committed to not use any English for the entire day (except for asking how to say something in English). It went really well, although the rest of my district was not a fan of it. They like telling jokes and talking to people, so they couldn't really do that too well in just Portuguese. But I liked it, I'll try to get them to do it a lot more. And on Saturday I finally noticed that whenever we were writing in our journals or getting ready for bed, at around 10:15, it's always a solid 86 F in our room. Which is also great. And that's with a fan going. So it goes without saying that I almost always just sleep on top of all the sheets and such.

Then on Sunday, Elder Keller (from the other companionship in our district) and I blessed the sacrament. It was pretty cool doing it in Portuguese. And I still haven't been randomly picked to give a talk in sacrament meeting, so I'm pretty sure it'll be me next week. Also on Sunday, the Guarana machines in the cafeteria ceased to function. So that was a traumatic experience :) Only the Brazilian version of Sprite (can't remember what it's called, sorry) for a whole 4 meals or something, which is 4 too many to not have Guarana with.

Then on Monday, it's worth mentioning that we had CHEESEBURGERS for dinner, with mayo and ketchup and tomatoes. And, during that same dinner, they had the Guarana working again. So that was amazing. But, the burgers still tasted very Brazilian somehow. I can't really explain it. So that was the only meal I've ever gone for seconds on.

Then on Tuesday, the big district in our zone left. They had the only four sisters in our zone, and one of those sisters played the piano for our sacrament meetings. So I guess that's me now. So we said goodbye to most of them Tuesday morning before breakfast. The ones that hadn't left at 4 in the morning anyways. It's pretty crazy to think about, that we've got two weeks left ourselves. I don't know how a month(ish) has gone by already.

And then we went to the temple again today, except it took longer for some reason so we'll have less time outside. But that's alright. I have an actual shopping list this week, and then we have to go to Mr. Cheney's for sure :)

So I said I'd give you my schedule last week, and I totally forgot. So the general schedule is: (I thought about giving it to you in Portuguese, but decided I'd be nice :) we get it in Portuguese)

6:30 - Wake up, shower, get ready, etc.
7:00 - Breakfast
7:30 - Personal study
8:30 - Language study
9:15 - Get ready for physical activity
9:25 - Physical activity (run 5 laps around this weirdly shaped track, and then volei or basquete)
10:10 - Shower and get ready, again
10:45 - TALL (technology assisted language learning), which helps you learn phrases/words/grammar for the missionary lessons
11:30 - Additional study
11:45 - Lunch
12:30 - Additional study
1:30 - Instructor time
4:30 - Dinner
5:20 - Additional study
6:00 - Instructor time
9:00 - Plan
9:30 - Snack
9:45 - Get ready for bed
10:00 - Quiet time, in the dorms
10:30 - Lights out

So I hope that's informative as to what I'm up to. Every Tuesday, there's a devotional, so everything is normal until after dinner, then there's choir practice and the devotional. And Wednesday is P-day, obviously. And I'm not going to bother with Sunday schedule, there's meetings until lunch (at 12:30ish, though) and then free-time, for the most part. And a devotional as well.

Some of the other elders in the other zone are really good at quoting Nacho Libre, so that's been pretty funny :)  And I'm getting in some basketball, so I feel like I'm kinda honoring Curt in a way. :)  Plus his tie, of course. I hope that doesn't make you cry.

That's about it from me this week, I guess a lot of stuff happened actually. Everything's going well for me, though! Love you guys! And thank you for the gift card again, we're going to go blow 50 reais at Cheney's after this :)


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