Monday, June 24, 2013

75 days out!

Ok my first and most important question this week is:
1. Was that your apartment in the picture you sent last week? The one with the dog next to you. That is unbelievable!! If that is your apartment I cant imagine what you are seeing.
  No that wasn´t my apartment. But it was about 5 minutes from it. Definitely not much different. It´s in a place called ¨8 de Septiembre¨ which is the most dangerous part of town.
2. Did you watch the Worldwide Leadership Conference on Sunday? If so was it in Spanish?
  Yes and yes. It was SO annoying to have to hear voiceover Spanish, when I know what their real voices sound like.
This picture is from Chances mission Pres. Blog. It is the Trujillo mission watching the Worldwide Leadership Conference on Sunday. Chance is 5 rows back in the red tie.
3. Have you been able to teach a lesson yet in Spanish?
  Yes tons.
4. How does your church money card work? Are you able to use it to buy fruit at the stands and stuff?
  Don´t know what card your talking about.
5. Are you better yet from your sickness?
  A little bit better.
6. Are the people kind and welcoming to you? Have you had anyone shut the door in your face?
   People laugh at me all day, every day. But after that they are usually pretty nice. Nobody tells us we can´t visit them another day... they just blow us off later. HA HA HA.
7. How are your supplies holding up from home? 
  I have been immensely grateful for your thoughtfulness in the that tote... You thought of everything... And I have been using various things like IMMODIUM. LOL. Thank you! 
8. What modern convenience do you miss the most?
  Definitely carpet.... Is that weird or what?
9. Tell us more about your companion? How long has he been out? Are you able to help him with English and he you with Spanish?
  He´s only got 7 months in the mission. He´s very ¨by the book¨ and ¨to the letter¨. I guess that´s good. I have learned a lot about exact patterns of missionary work from him. And Yes.
10. Have you seen the Trujillo Temple? How is it coming along? Do they have a date yet for completion?
  Jan 2015.  I´ll be here for it. It´ll be like the grand finale of my mission. Cool, right? We are teaching a family right now who wants to be the first family sealed in it. La Familia SaldaƱa. They are awesome. And Yes I´ve seen it. It´s just a lot of cement right now.
11. Did you use all your cash when you flew there? I noticed you haven't used any money in your personal account at all.
  No. I have been very frugal. I´ve only spent like 30 bucks. Or ninety Soles. I bought a soccer jersey.
12. Is your Visa and passport safe and sound haha?
  Yeah. They keep it in the mission office.
13. Do you have to pay to use the internet?
  Yes. But it´s like 30 cents an hour. So basically no....
14. Do you ever eat at members homes? How is the food going?
  Never. But the food is......... repetitive. Chicken and rice every day. Sometimes we get duck instead.... which still tastes the same. Food is very bland here.
15. Does your pensionista do your laundry too?
  Yeah. She is awesome.
16. Are you still loosing weight?
  Ha ha ha.................... yes..... sorry.
17. Have you been getting letters or emails from anyone? Are you getting the pouch mail letters?
  YES! I finally got everyone´s letters this last Tuesday! Thank you everyone! I really enjoyed all of your thoughtful letters! And Amy is hilarious. Ha ha ha. Tell her thanks for the comic. Ha ha ha. I miss you all back home so much. I love you all to the point that none of you could ever know.
Okay... a few quick things.
Funny: Peru flew the flag at half mast when their team lost to Colombia for world cup qualifying games.
Cool: I taught a blind lady who could play guitar like a FOOL. She lost her sight after a car accident.
Needs: I Need more socks.... I never imagined that the streets would be as dusty as they are. I really can re-wear them every day, and our pension takes a week to do laundry. So I usually have 3 pairs for the week. It gets gross.... Ha ha ha. So if that´s possible, I would appreciate it. Also, I would like a letter from Grandparents Thorpe.
weird: People here LOVE Nu Wave music from the 80´s.It´s gross. Ha ha ha.

I think that is all. I love you all so much. And mom.... don´t worry about me. I´m starting to get things a little bit figured out. Thank you for your love and thoughtfulness. I never told you that enough before.
- Elder Boekweg

Monday, June 17, 2013

1 month in Peru


;) I know it wasn´t dad´s birthday....... Ha ha ha.

Question and Answer section:
1. Are you sick yet? ( I have to keep asking, Moms just need to know)
  YES. Ha ha ha. I have had bronchitus all this last week.
2. Did you receive any of my mail yet?
  Yes! Got your pics las Tuesday. I loved them. Thank you!
3. What is your companion like?
   He went to the smartest college in Peru. Ha ha ha. He speaks very little English.
4. Is your companion waiting for a visa to anywhere else?
5. What do you think about the mission change- losing Huaraz to Lima West Mission?
    I am really bummed. It seems like Huaraz was the last peice of ¨not desert¨left in our mission.    It also had the most ruins to go see. But oh well.
6. How did you like the Papa Johns Pizza- was it pretty much the same?
   It´s the same. Execpt nobody here likes Hawiian pizza. I don´t even think it´s an option.
7. How are your feet holding up? How about your shoes?
    Feet are fine. No worms yet. Ha ha ha.
8. Have you played soccer with the Elders yet?
    Yes. Last time was with the Elders. They are mostly natives.
9. Are you able to see the pictures that I send?
10. Courtney wants to know why you didn't write her back?
   I REALLY don´t have time.... I am sorry. I make this letter and the letter to the president a priority. And then my time is usually over.
11. Is it best for me to ship to the mission home? How do you get your mail?
    Mission home works fine. They send mail to us from there weekly.
12. Do you dream in Spanish? They say when you start dreaming in Spanish your getting the language.
      Ha ha ha ha. No. Give me a year.
13. How do you like the weather there? Do you have humidity?
    It´s really humid. But I´m used to it already. 
I´m okay. Don´t worry about me being sick. Our pensionista´s daughter had it and I guess
I got it... Anyway... Okay... I´m trying to send a picture..... it´s taking FOREVER to upload. But I will do my best to send it.
   I thought a lot about dad yesterday. I even wore his yellow and blue striped tie. I miss him... that weird old man.... Every once in a while, I am astounded at how my actions resemble his in some way. Like my humor that NOBODY understands here. And I totally adopted his ¨dumb guy smile¨ that he uses on Courtney all the time. I am sad that I don´t get to see him again for 21 months. But then I think that I´ve already been away for half a half a year. I´m already an 8th of the way done.... And I am loving Casagrande. I only have 6 weeks left here and then I get transferred. I don´t want to leave it. So there´s my shout out to dad.
   And grandpa Boekweg. I felt so much better after I read your email. I was thinking about your mission a few weeks ago and how much harder Dutch must have been to learn than Spanish is. I really appreciate all the messages from you and Grandma, even if I don´t have time to write them back, for which I am very sorry.
   And to the Gregrich family... How are you guys doing!? Is Taylor excited that it is finally summer vacation from school? I think it´s cool that y´all´re following my blog. (Which I, ironically, have not seen...) I hope it´s cool. My mom usually does a really good job with stuff like that.

 So Casagrande was founded by Nazis, I think. It looks like they came here after WW2 and started all the sugarcane stuff. The Gildemeister family apparently owned most of the town, including the smokestack. Then in the 60´s Peruvian government kicked them out for some reason I still don´t understand. anyway, here is a picture of their house, that arned Casagrande, or Bighouse, it´s name. Uncle, I think it could make a perfectly awesome map in Nazi Zombies.... because that´s the first thing I thought when I saw it. This is by FAR the nicest house in this city.... and it´s like 70 years old. so it´s falling apart. Creepy.
Anyway, I love you all. I will try to send more pictures................. but like always, no promises. Ha ha ha. 
Maybe Chances apartment?? He didn't say, but it fits the description.

House he referred to in email. 

 Chance and companion

 Pizza at Mission Home

Group photo of Chances and all the new missionaries. He is in the back.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Working on Spanish

I just really love the question and answer section. That's the only way I get to find out the things I really want to know.  So here it is again:

Mom -
1. Sick yet? No.
2. Are you in wards or branches? Do you have stakes? I am in the Independencia Ward. There is about 40 active members in Casagrande.
3. What are the church buildings like? Our church building looks like the church bought 3 neighboring houses, and knocked out a few walls. It is really makeshift.
4. What is your favorite food so far? Platanos is fried banana. It is SO good.
5. Is there anything you didn't take you wish you had? I only wish I had brought more American candy. Like swedish fish. The candy here is kind of gross. Ha ha ha. Except Casino cookies. Those are sweet.
6. How is the sunset there? SUPER lame. There are no mountains by Casagrande. So I just watch it set as if it were in Texas (Ha ha ha).
7. Are you emailing all your friends? No.... I feel so bad that I don´t have much tme to write anybody. Emailing time is really rushed, and letters just aren´t an option anymore. Entonces, I am very limited. But tell Grandma Boekweg that I really appreciate her constant messages and love. She has been awesome in all this.
8. Do you communicate with your mission pres often? No. Once a week I write him a letter and that´s it. He doesn´t reply to them either.
9. Have you played soccer yet? Yes! On a cement field in the middle of a sketchy area in Casagrande with native local players. It was like Fifa in real life. Ha ha ha ha. Street ball in so fun. These guys can stinkin´PLAY soccer. But they DID say that they were impressed with my skills.... for a gringo. Ha ha ha.
10. Have you been able to play the piano yet or any other instrument? Yes. one of our investigating families discovered that I could play guitar, so they make me play it every time we visit. I play them a SomeFish original probably every oter day. It´s so nice....
11. When will we get pictures? Don´t know. I´m going to try it again here in a second, but no promises.
12. How is your Spanish now, fast? NO. I am basically mute here. They all talk so quietly, that I can´t understand them, let alone reply to them. It is so hard being alone in your language. I can´t communicate with anyone. I get so lonely that sometimes, when we are walking through the dusty streets, I look up at heaven and talk to God out loud in English... because He´s the only that understands me right now... Ha ha ha ha. Needless to say, my prayers have lengthened greatly since I´ve been here. I testify that God is listening to us through every second of every day. He wants to hear from us. I have yet to ask Him for something I didn´t recieve. I know beyond any shadow of any doubt that our Father in Heaven understands us, and is willing to help us when we ask. I swear He almost audibly talks to me now. Every once in a while He tells me something. I know it sounds weird, but in some way I know it´s Him. Giving me advice and telling me things I need to hear. I love Him. I love my Savior Jesus Christ, who suffered every pain of every man who ever lived, so that He could know how to comfort us. He truly is the King of kings and Lord of lords. He is deeply interested in our success. And every person on this earth without exception can feel of His love. I have already seen His countenance appear in people´s lives and change them.

     Phew... I´m so weird now.... definitely not who I was only 2 months ago. I cry a lot more now. Ha ha ha. It´s like suddenly, somebody flipped a switch in my head and now I see things in a different light. God´s children mean way more to me than they ever did before all this. I see their spirits now. I hear them. I may not speak Spanish well yet, but I think I have been able to communicate with people in a different language. I am beginning to understand just how in-touch our spirits are with each other. It´s like people talk to me with their eyes now. Mouths have become almost useless.... It´s the oddest thing.
   Also... My brain is starting to get really confused with ¨who said what¨? Everybody tells me things in Spanish, but my brain stores it like they said it in English. So I can remember what they said, but I remember them saying it in English. It´s dang weird.
   Can´t get the photo to upload again... Sorry... But when I finally do, nobody is going to able to believe where I am.
   People are SO racist here. Ha ha ha. I get called gringo about a billion times a day. People stare at me and laugh at me when I walk by. Sometimes I forget that I´m different from everyone else, and then I shake someone´s hand and see the difference in skin tone... ha ha ha. I really am the white sheep here... ha ha ha. Yesterday we went to Sausal for a refferal visit, and to my understanding, I was the first white man to ever set foot in Sausal. Crazy, right? 
   Anyway, HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD! And happy father´s day. I love you.
   I love you all and hope home is still.... boring. Ha ha ha. Enjoy the fiery mountain. 
- Elder Boekweg
*Just a disclaimer- It really isn't Andys birthday! I don't know where that came from HAHA!!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Short and Sweet

I really liked the question and answer thing and apparently Chance doesn't mind it either. So I will start the blog there again,

Time for some questions:
1. Have you received any of the mail Ive sent so far? I sent some by dearelder and 1 thing by regular mail.
 I haven´t recieved a thing yet. Sorry...
2. Are you sick yet?
 I don't feel sick.
3. What is your address where you live?
I really don´t think I have an address, but if you want to look up close to where I live, look up ¨Madre de Dios, Casagrande¨ because that is the street next to me. It is SO poor. Ha ha ha.
4. How are the fruit stands, do you buy any?
 I´m not allowed to buy anything that doens´t have a peel. But I bought a mandarin orange from a stand the other day for what is probably 7 Americans cents, and it was SO good. Way better than what America has. It was fresh. Ahhhh.....
5. Do you eat lots of rice? haha
6. What are your Sundays like? Have you spoken in church yet?
irreverent, No.
7. Do you have a bed?
8. Do you have running water and toilet?
9. Do you need anything?
more time to email.....
10. Do you hate the question / answer thing?
It´s cool.
Uhhh.... I am so sorry.... but the guy who owns this email place just tapped me and said my time is up.... So I have to go. I will figure our how to send pics and stuff eventually..... I DO have two years here, after all...
I love you all very much. I will try to write the mission pres for less time next time. Sorry. Ugh....
 - Elder Boekweg
*** Chance refused to sing in the ward choir. I told him it would catch up to him on the mission. I found a picture to confirm that HAHA!! Sis Turk put on her blog that.... The Elders all sat on the first two rows... we weren't sure what they 
were doing ... but they were a part of the big last choir
number that they had prepared.