Monday, May 27, 2013

First letter from Peru

Ok, so I asked Chance a bunch of questions and he answered every one of them. So I will start off with our question- answer part.....

1. Have you been sick from the food?
    not yet
2. What is your mailing address, lots of people are asking and I don't know if its best to send it to the mission home first. I would think you wont get your mail for some time if it goes there first since they would have to get it to you.
    I have NO idea if I even have one. But Dear Elder still works
3. How was the long flight? Did you get sick?
    eleven hours. no.
4. Is your companion Peruvian?
    Yes. Elder Zavaleta is from Lima (los Olivos, yo creo) tell Roberto I spent the night in Callao (Cayow)
5. What is your apartment like?
      Apartment reminds me of.... a cement floor, cinder block walls, and a rotten wood ceiling. Ha ha ha
6. Are you drinking your 1 cola a day?
     no. There is plenty of fresh water.
7. How was it to meet the Turks? What is the mission home like?
    Turks are awesome. I´m pretty sure Pres Turk wears Nike socks under his slacks. Ha ha ha. The mission home in the nicest home in Peru by a long shot.
8. Did you ride a bus to get to your city?
     I took a vanpool-ish thing to Casagrande, where I am. It is in the far North of the mission, close to the ocean. It is surrounded by sugarcane, which is always on fire... Ha ha ha. It´s WILD here...
9. Are you by a university? I googled Independencia and its says it by Huaraz and there is a university there. It looks like its by the mountains.
    There is a difference between universities in the states, and universities here... So yes and no... ha ha ha enough said?
10. Do you need your priesthood lineage? Actually I am going to send it in an attachment in this email. Let me know if you cant open it.
      that will do
11. Do you want me to give out your email address?
12. How are you able to email me?
      there are little niches in Casagrande with internet. Kind of like cybercafés.
13. How is your Spanish? Are you keeping up?
      Mí Español es mejorando, pero necesito estudiar más, porque personas aqui hablan MUY más rapido que mis maestros en los estados. Es difícil para me entender que estan diciendo a veces.
14. How is the pensionista thing working out? Do you get 3 meals a day?
      The pensionista is awesome. She is the wife of our area president, whose name escapes me. Peruvians eat dinner at noon, and lunch at 7 or 8, if that makes sense.

And now I can say what I want. Ha ha ha. First of all, wherever I am..... is NOT where I used to be. Ha ha ha ha. I have never dreamed of poverty like this. I already don´t believe that poverty even exists in the states. We are so blessed. Also, I have been amazed at how.... dirty everything is. The streets, houses, and everything else are just filthy. My apartment is lucky enough to have a makeshift shower that is sometimes warm, but a lot of people don´t have one. There are a billion dogs in the streets, starving. Ladies breastfeed their kids in visible public all the time. There are things called motos, which seem to be the preffered mode of transportation. It´s basically a motorcycle with a couch nailed onto the back. Ha ha ha. Like a taxi.
   Everybody stares at me when I walk by... It´s surreal. But I guess if I had gone my whole life having never seen more than a few white people, I would stare at me too. I always hear them say, Mira! Un gringo! Ha ha ha. Then they usually ask me to say something in English or German. Everyone thinks I´m from Germany... which I find sort of funny. I guess it makes sense. Compared to them, I am this tall blonde haired blue-eyed guy with the name Boekweg. Muy raro, as they would say.
   I am going to start counting how many Barcelona logos I see in a single day it´s got to be in the hundreds. Little kids are always playing soccer in the streets with homemade balls. They idolize Messi. He´s kind of like a god here. Ha ha ha. I guess these people don´t need any lessons on which soccer team is the best in the world. Also, I can get nice jerseys here for DIRT cheap. So If you want one (And I mean ANY team) let me know.
   And a disclaimer... It looks like my time to communicate with ANYONE is going to be extremely short. So tell everyone that I love them even if I don´t write back. Especially Grandma Boekweg, whose note I recently found in the pocket of my white pants as I got ready for my FIRST BAPTISM! Ha ha ha. Not bad, right? He was a little ten year old boy named Brandon Castillo. And he has like, 18 other names that I don´t remember... Ha ha ha. I can´t figure out how to send pictures, and I´m running out of time. So I guess I´ll try to have it figured out by next Monday. You´re not going to believe the pictures... In only a week I have seen SO many crazy things.
   Anyway mom, I love you very much. Don´t worry about me. I am safer than I have ever been. I love you too, Courtney. And dad...... I loved hearing from you too... Ha ha ha. Just kidding. I love you. Everybody likes Van Halen here. Long live Rock n Roll.
This picture came because Sister Udy at the MTC took it and sent it to Chance with this message:
Your mom will love this!
She was right. I had asked for the famous picture by the map. Thanks Sis. Udy!!
From what Chance said I think this is where he is serving-
Casa Grande
—  Town  —
Casa Grande, Peru is located in Peru
Casa Grande
 / -7.7445833; -79.1881
Country Peru
RegionLa Libertad
DistrictCasa Grande
Casa Grande is a town in Northern Peru, capital of the district of Casa Grande of Ascope Province in the region La Libertad. This town is located beside the Pan-American Highway some 48 km north of Trujillo city in the agricultural Chicama Valley.

I think this might be what Chance meant by the sugar cane is always on fire. His Mission Pres. wife- Sister Turk posted this on her blog:
                                            You can tell we are in Casa Grande because of the
black and white smoke constantly pumping
out of the Sugar Cane factories.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Elder Boekweg is in Peru!!

Dear family,
I am here in Trujillo.  We got here at about 8:00 this morning, all is well. This morning the missionaries, and President and Sister Turk picked us up from the Airport. Then we had breakfast, today we have a bunch of trainings and I will meet my trainer later this afternoon.   I am tired, but fantastic!!!
I will email you more next Monday.
Elder Boekweg
Chance and his ticket to Peru!!

Chance and group checking in at SLC airport

Chance and his trainer Elder Zavaleta. 

Chance with his group of 28 missionaries. You will see Chance in the back next to the bus.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


Chance called today from the MTC to let us know his visa came today!
Off to Trujillo Peru on Monday!!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Yay! Pictures finally

      As far as the cd goes..... Give it to anyone who wants it. But more specifically, Linzi, Jacee, and Tyler Kelsey all need a copy. Sadie needs one. Tali needs her own. Give one to Kirk. And then I really don't know who would want one after that. It was awesome to see though... You did a really good job. Thank you very much! Ironic that I wasn't there for the release of my album.... Oh well.
   Elder Richards has become a friend of mine. We are both going to Peru. He says he thinks our Visas came, but I have my doubts. Until I'm holding it in my hands, I refuse to believe that it's here. But that would make me very, very happy. While I'm on this subject, I will tell you about my companion, Elder Cunningham. I really, truly could not have asked for a better companion. He is awesome. We get along perfectly well. I doubt that I'll have another companion this good ever again.  Either way, it has been good to have such a cool friend here at the MTC... And tell grandma Boekweg that he is the missionary she looked up online from Rexburg.
   I can't believe it's been 6 weeks since you dropped me off here. Time has flown by. I guess that's a good way to describe it. Ha ha ha. Slow in the moment, fast in review.
   There is an hermana in my district that Courtney would LOVE. Her name is hermana Udy, and she raises sheep on a gigantic farm up in Plymouth Utah. She's been breeding sheep for a thousand years with her famuily. She thought it was awesome that I had a grand champion pig one year... At least SOMEONE thinks it's cool.... Ha ha ha ha. She's big into FFA, and with hearing about Courtney's new FFA Vice-Pres stuff, I thought her and Courtney might actually be the same person. Anyway, hermana Udy looks EXACTLY like MJ from the old spiderman movies.
   I laughed so hard at DJ's graduation announcement. He's still the exact same kid as he was all those many years ago. My oldest friend. Ha ha ha ha. I love that guy to death. And Kenzie's announcement was the envy of every missionary on my floor. They all tried to steal it. Glamour shots of girls are kind of sparce here....... So that was funny too.
   So I believe you (and Nancy) are going to kill me... I promised you both that I would take a lot of pictures, and so far I've taken about 8.... Ha ha ha. And I show up in like..... 2 of them. With that being said, I will try to take more when I get to scenic Idaho Falls. Until then, I will continue trying to upload these few pictures... Ugh. I GOT IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! But I can't see which picture's I'm uploading, so I hope they're good ones.
   Dad's letter was funny. Long live Pink Floyd.
   Courtney.... you better not be dating by the time I get home... I have already been weirded out by your getting a job and stuff.... In my brain, you will always be that little brat who was missing her front tooth. Ha ha ha
   Also, if at any point in the next 2 years dad gets my car sold.... I would like to know about it.
   I am sitting next to Elder Wood, who played on BYU-Hawii's soccer team! He is sick good. His skills are from his eagle powers. He says his club team before college was in the top 8 in the nation........ So he's a ton of fun to play with, now that the field is opened here. He runs circles around us all. He is a Messi fan. And he hates Ronaldo... which is all that is truly important among humans.
   I was talking to a guy from boutinful, and I told him I was from Tooele. He said, "Tooele, Idaho? I've been there." I laughed my guts out. I told him we are close to the Nevada border, but not quite Idaho. I find it amazing how many people don't know where Tooele is.
   Also, I have discovered about 5 more Boekwegs in the last week. As it turns out, our name is an LDS church name. Tons of Mormons have it. I used to think I was pretty special and unique, and then I realized that half of Provo knows a Boekweg already.
   I hope you all have another good week. Time is flying. Before you know it, I will have been gone a year. It's weird to think that in the situation of Hermana Gomez, I will have been away from her longer than I've known her when my mission is done. Pretty. Odd. (That was for Linzi Kelsey)
   Anyway, I love you all and I hope I get to call home from an airport this week. We'll see how things go, eh?
      Todo con amor,
               Elder Boekweg
As you will see- Chance finally figured out how to upload pictures. Although this first one came from the mom of one of the missionaries. She found us on facebook and shared the photo. I was so excited to see it. The Elder next to Chance is his companion Elder Cunningham.
Here is Chance and Elder Jeff Monson from Tooele

Cool- his name tag in Spanish

This one is random- but hey Im just grateful for the pictures!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

One month in the MTC

So according to the MTC, this is actually my 5th week. Meaning I "should" only have one more after this... but there is some bad news. Apparently, 1 in 4 Peru missionaries gets reassigned to wait for their Visa. The other 3 wait the extra weeks at the MTC to pass the time. My other companion just got his Visa, so he'll be leaving at the end of the week, probably. I turned my papers in before him... ha ha ha. Ugh. This means I'll be what's called a "solo" missionary. Because there are 4 hermanas in my district, I can be alone in rooms with them. So I'll be some sort of freakish breed of missionary. I even get a sticker for my nametag that says "solo." But this also means that when I need to go to the bathroom, I have to drag 4 girls with me to wait outside the door. Ha ha ha. I better get that stupid Visa soon...
   I met the Marlers (My mission President.) They are here learning spanish just like the rest of us. They are awesome people. It was a fluke, too. We were on the way back from the temple session last P-day, and I overheard them talking to some other missionaries. I heard the name Marler, and I asked, "Hey you wouldn't happen to be the next mission president of the Trujillo Peru mission, would you?" He laughed and said yes. Then we talked for close to an hour. He said it was okay. He doesn't get to Peru until July. But he and his wife are also Visa-waiting... He said that there is no tracting in our mission because the members give the missionaries enough referrals. I am bummed about that... Ha ha ha. I was all excited to tract the dirt streets of the poorest place on earth. He also said that there are only 2 meals a day in Peru. A small breakfast, and a big lunch. That's not what uncle Roberto told me, but maybe he just meant for missionaries. He also told me that only 20% of the Elders in the Trujillo mission are North American. crazy, right?
   It has already been a month. I only have 23 left. One went by so fast. I have a feeling that this is going to be over before I even know it. I just hope that I can eventually be in Peru...
   There is no way on this green Earth that I will ever figure out how to upload pictures on to this piece of junk... I am sorry. I'll just send you my SD card or something. Maybe I'll just print out the pictures, tape them to rocks, and throw them home. Ha ha ha. It may actually work... I have frustrated myself for 4 weeks in a row now... I give up.
   I wish I could convey my many thoughts to you... But I just can't type them like I want to. I don't have enough time to type out the many things that I want to tell you about. So I'll just talk to you in 2 years when I get home. Ha ha ha ha. These computers are the bane of my existence. I have to erase every single word and fix the spelling of it at least once because I hit a wrong key.  Ugh.
   Tell Eileen that I loved her letter. It was good to hear that they are raccoon free as of late. Ha ha.
   And for the package this week..... I guess I could use some more Irish Spring wash, because I'm out... And if it's possible, I would like a loaf of Grandma's bread with some butter and jelly. Ha ha ha.
   I love you all,

Height- written by Elder Chance Boekweg May 2, 2013


A dozen seeds fell to the ground,
a grassy forest floor,
and quickly started sprouting up,
to join the great tree war,
Eleven started growing fast,
the way that most trees do,
one seed fell behind the rest,
but tried to grow fast too,
Eleven sprouted many leaves,
to catch the tasty sun,
the other, doing all he could,
had sprouted only one,
Eleven's leaves were much too high,
when many deer came by,
so the little tree was not surprised,
when he kissed his goodbye,
Eleven trees would laugh at one,
through snow and sun and rain,
poke twigs at him 'cause they were tall,
and he was not the same,
Eleven trees were old and bent,
when one tree finally grew,
but eleven trees still laughed at him,
and the best that he could do,
Eleven trees fell to the ground,
when heavy winds came through,
their trunks made weak by growing fast,
they each had snapped in two,
Now one tree stands alone, made strong,
by constant trying times,
a sturdy, thick, and gnarled trunk,
alone in tasty light

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Week 3- New P-Day

Madre y la familia,
Pday got moved to Tuesday. So here I am again.
   I got put in another Tri-panionship. We have a guy that's waiting for his Visa to Monterrey, Mexico. So I guess it's "possible" for any of us to leave any day. But it's not looking likely. A sister in my district told us about a guy she knew that waited for his Visa to Peru for 17 months. I'd bet I'm going stateside for the better part of my mission. I just hope it's not to the Tooele mission. Ha ha ha. Our old tri-panionship guy just wrote Elder Cinningham a letter telling us about how awesome Peru is. He's had 2 apostles come visit the Lima MTC. He plays soccer every day. He loves the Lima temple. The weather is great....... and on and on and on....... Ha ha ha ha ha ha. Ugh. Oh well, huh?
   Today is the last day that the first verse of "My Dearest April applies..."
   You know how most people gain weight in the MTC? I've actually lost like 5 pounds. I don't eat anything here because...... it's interesting. Ha ha ha. My rule of thumb is that you don't eat anything that can carry out a conversation with you. So I don't end up with much, usually. Ha ha ha.
   I'm going to get my hair buzz cut right after this letter. That should look pretty fascinating.
   I actually feel like I have too much computer time here. What on earth am I going to do with an hour on the computer? Typing is a horrendous chore. Not to mention that I can't watch Pink Floyd videos on Youtube to pass the time anymore. Ha ha ha.
   This week marks the halfway point with the MTC. Whether my Visa comes or not, I will be somewhere else in another 3 weeks. Hopefully. Unless they keep me here to wait in the call center or something. This last Sunday, our Branch Presidency asked me and Elder Cunningham to be the zone leaders, which would be a harder job if we had more than 7 Elders in our Zone. Ha ha ha. We actually have way more sisters than Elders. I hear that the MTC is now 51% Elders, and 49% Sisters. How crazy is that?
   I am just so unquenchably excited to get my feet on Peruvian ground and get to work that it's sick. I just pray that it is God's will to have me in Peru soon. Every day I wake up believing my Visa will be in my mailbox, and every night I go to bed disappointed that it wasn't. I'm beginning to lose hope for it. But Elder Bednar said something cool about wanting things on a mission... "Who cares what you want? A mission is not about you." Ha ha ha. And so I will wait... wait and hope for, but not focus on getting out of Provo.
   I figured something out about Uncle, and therefore me. (Ha ha ha) His humor is totally missionary humor. We joke about funny situations happening, because they never do. Ha ha ha. Uncle must've brought it home from his mission, taught it to me, and kept it alive through Saturday night zombie hang outs. So I already understood the missionary humor when I got here. I also have a picture for you to see in 2 years where I look exactly like uncle... it's eerie.
   Oh yeah.... y'all're never going to believe this, but... I went to a meeting for new zone leaders yesterday, and I randomly sat next to ELDER BOEKWEG! I was like, "Elder, we have GOT to be related..." His name was Jacob Boekweg and he was from Provo. Apparently, we are from two totally different Boekweg families, both coming from Holland. But as all Boekwegs know, we are all related somehow. There's not too many of us kickin' around. He didn't seem to know about the Buckways, or the whole world war 1 name-changing story, but it was still cool. I thought he stole my nametag at first.
    (I don't know how to do unpside down question marks or accents on a keyboard, but here's this...) Espanol es muy bien. Es posible que en dos anos, no puedo hablar Ingles. Tambien, yo creo que orando en Espanol es mas bonita que Ingles a veces. Mis companeros son de acuerdos. Yo se que el Libro de Mormon es la palabra de Dios en nuestros dias modernos. Es un don para los ninos de Dios, y necesitamos lo estudiar. Es muy importante saber que es nuestro proposito en esta vida, y no podemos vivir con nuestro Padre Celestial otra ves sin el conocimiento que somos ninos de Usted y tenemos mucho para hacer aqui. Si queremos saber la mente de Dios, debemos leer las escrituras. Entonces, necesitamos hacer algo para nuestros hermanos.Todo es sobre amor. En esta vida, no debemos nos servir. Esta vida es sobre ayudando otras personas.
To the native speaker, I hope that all made sense...
I love you bye!