Monday, July 29, 2013

Mexico...Arriba! - Elder Brian Burgess

Written by Elder Brian Burgess, currently serving in the Mexico Puebla North Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Spanish.

Hola Everyone!

I entered the MTC (Missionary Training Center) the 29th of May. I just barely realized earlier today that today is two months. Time has flown. And I´ve only just begun!

So, funny story to start us off. I don´t really understand the Mexico addresses, or Spanish in fact. But the other day my companion wanted to see if I could lead the way to an appointment. After taking a few wrong turns, and streets later, I hear a voice behind me (Elder Rodriguez, my companion), "Elder, ¿A donde vamos?" (Where are we going). So I thought I would be clever, and since I had no idea, I thought for a minute and said, " ¡El Reino de Celestial!" (The Celestial Kingdom!). I figured I didn't know where I was going on the street, But the Lord was happy I was at least trying. Haha! That's my first joke in Spanish. I hope you laugh. Because I tried hard.

Well, well, well... Mexico....I got my first haircut today. I was very scared because I forgot the words for haircut. So I just walked in (my companion thought it would be funny not to help), and I just smiled. She looked at me and acknowledged I had no idea what was going on. I pointed at my head. She pointed at the chair, gibbered some gibberish and laughed. I sat there and said a couple prayers, so I wouldn't leave bald. By the end of it, I was actually very pleased. I got the full, pampered treatment. And I like my haircut. It cost me $50 pesos, which is like 4 US Dollars. My companion's jaw dropped because apparently that's expensive. Oh boy! I´m used to paying 15 US Dollars. hahah!

"Those who keep a book of remembrance are more likely to keep the Lord in remembrance in their daily lives. Journals are a way of counting our blessings and of leaving the inventory of these blessings for our posterity." Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, May 1978

I found this quote in my backpack. No idea where it came from. I taped it to the inside of my journal, and it has pushed me to write in my journal everyday. A very wise mother and father once told me to write in my journal everyday as well. I´m happy to say I haven´t missed a day. And it's been a blessing already. I also refer to it for things to remember to tell you all on P-Days.

Some days are hard because everyone reschedules or isn't home, or the man of the house is gone. But I try, and keep working hard. I've talked to many drunks. It's funny because everyone that I have talked to who knows some English is drunk. So either way, in English or Spanish, no one understands me.

Soooo... Mexico dogs...... Scary. I´ve almost been bit a few times. One was very scary. I looked down right as his jaw was over my ankle, and I moved just as it closed its bite. Barely missed it. Afterward, when I looked at the dog (a weird dog with like 10 different mixes of dog in it), its right eye was like three times bigger then its left, and it was gushing out this liquid that was not a good color. I´ve seen many little dogs with big heads. And big dogs with little heads. Many pit bulls with flappy ears and long fur. And the list goes on and on....So next time you see an ugly dog in the U.S., just remember it is a model dog compared to its competition down here.

Well, I love you all. I love this work. I love the gospel. I´ll try and send some pictures.

Elder Burgess

Before my haircut

The volcano is called Popocatepetl. You can see ancient
ruins in the far right of the photo.
Popocatepetl on a more active day. This was taken from
my Mission President's balcony.

A Peak into my Life in Mexico