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Thursday, September 11, 2014

September 3, 2014

[Note: items in blue brackets have been added for clarification]

It's good to hear from you! I'll do my best to get your questions answered.
No one in my district is going to Xalapa. In fact up until yesterday I was under the impression I was the only person at the MTC [Missionary Training Center] going to Xalapa, but one of the Elders on the consulate trip thought the same thing, so we'll likely be companions as we seem to be the only people headed to Xalapa on the 29th. I may be leaving two days early, not sure yet.
There's one other companionship of elders in my district, but they're in a group of three. I may be able to send you a picture later today if I get it from other members of the district.
Elder Funke (Funky) is our District Leader. He wrestled in high school, loved to hunt, and came out right after he graduated. He's also shorter than me. HAH! He was a little distracted and crazy the first few days, and I maybe made some angry comments to that effect, but he owned up to them after a few days and said he needed to be better. That was a huge change that really helped the district overall. He's a funny guy who sometimes gets stuck in that "I can't stop laughing" kind of phase, but he's a lot of fun. He apparently dealt with a lot of anxiety problems before he came while he was growing up, but he says the gospel has really helped him have them all under control. He (and the rest of his companions) is going to Tampico, where literally people are emigrating because its so violent. Have fun!!!
Elder Pastrana really likes talking to girls but had some brothers he didn't get along with so he has a hard time with the guys here. We're supportive as much as we can be but he's really become more and more introverted, we're praying for him and hoping to turn things around though. He was supposed to be in the beginning class apparently so he's really struggling to understand what is happening in our class most of the time. he's right out of high school.
Elder Gochnour (gok-ner) is a super funny, super tall guy. Before he came out on his mission he had hair past his shoulders and he talks kind of like a hippy, but he makes us all laugh and has really improved his spanish since he got here. He's done a year of a civil engineering program at UVU. Or one of those Utah schools...
The two sisters are going to Panama.
Sister Reeves graduated from college and taught math for a year, then decided to go out on a mission. She's from Arab (Ay-rab) Alabama, the birthplace of the KKK. She went to school and I think teaches in Huntsville, so she knows Cyndie (Hannah's brothers wife) which is kinda fun. She sometimes gets annoyed with all these silly kids she's dealing with, but we got her some time to talk to the branch president and she seems to be doing better.
Sister Smith did a year at CSU or SCU or something in Colorado doing equestrian science and wants to be a nurse. She's literally just Haley from Michelangelo with slightly darker hair and no alcohol. She's pretty fun but tends to randomly stop working and ask us about our life stories.
Elder Seely is from Washington, a place called Maple Valley near Seattle.
The weather is nice, though it's kinda cold in the mornings. I wear my sweater some days.
The visit to the consulate was really uneventful but it means my visa should be here with no problems in a few weeks. Lots of time sitting in trains though!
Spanish is going better though it's really a long learning process. I'm doing my best to get through the Book of Mormon though. I had read through 1 Nephi in Spanish before I came, right now I'm in Mosiah. I'm hoping to finish in Spanish before I leave the MTC.
I've just been writing in margins with my pen and marking things. That's what I usually do anyway. I could pick up some colors at the bookstore though, and maybe I will, but right now I'm reading to learn Spanish and keeping notes of scriptural answers to questions, so that's not really what I need them for.
My laundry bag is starting to tear at the seam where the cord is attached, but the fabric is pretty tough. I might need another one though. I don't know that I need much else though.
I think that would really help. I don't know that I can upload pictures right now, so a USB chord would be great.
Elder Wadman
From Left to Right
Elder Seely, Elder Wadman, Elder Gochnour, Elder Funke, Elder Pastrana, Hermana Smith, Hermana Reeves

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