Me and my wonderful companion: Hermana Abilee Manner
I have made wonderful friends here and the Spanish is coming along. I am trying to have patience with the language but there are still frustrating moments.
Proselytizing! So they didn’t tell us much what to expect and so it was really scary when a teacher just gave us a map and then we got dropped off on the side of a busy road just with another set of elders! It took us awhile to figure out where we were since there weren’t street signs, they were painted on buildings instead. And wow it is really hard to explain what the city looked like. All the houses are concrete and had gates surrounding the front of their house. There was graffiti and trash everywhere. And so many dogs!!! Every house has at least 3 and then there are strays. None of them really bothered us though. We talked to and gave a pass along card or pamphlet to 25 people throughout the afternoon, mainly just street contacting. We tried clapping outside of gates but didn’t have much success that way. People either avoided us or would just stare.
I love wearing this nametag, and all it represents
It was hard to get up the courage to try to talk to people since they looked so busy with their own lives. We didn’t understand a lot of what people were saying, but they said they didn’t understand us either even though we thought we were speaking slowly and clearly! I guess we still don't pronounce Spanish words quite like the natives. It wasn’t so bad though. It was great practice! Two older men tried to kiss us as is the culture, but I retreated both times and gave them a handshake both times as we were told, but my companion wasn’t as quick as I was so she was kissed and it was really funny.
The 60ish Latinos that were all here left since their 3 weeks here were complete so there was almost 2 full days when it was just 16 of us North Americans. We had some really fun volleyball games during exercise time and we just loved having the building to ourselves. All today, the new set have been coming in and we are the seniors since we are the only ones that have already been here 3 weeks. Our new roommates seem nice enough but none of them speak any English so we will definitely get lots of practice!
The Spanish is coming along. I can string sentences together pretty well and teach lessons with my companion but I know my grammar is terrible. I often wonder how I will ever remember all these conjugations and tenses. Someday!