Nov 21, 2012

Trent's email 11/14/12

Hi Mom!
It´s cooling down here a little bit.  I´m happy.  I don´t think it ever gets below 80, but I don´t have any way of verifying that information.  Dominicans freak out though, they think they´re freezing cold.  Aah, Thanksgiving.  Aah.
The visit from Elder Cornish was FANTASTIC.
Wow, I really feel like I´ve been elevated as my ability to teach, significantly.  They always tell us that we´re supposed to invite people to be baptized in the first lesson, and set a date for baptism by the second lesson, which feels REALLY UNCOMFORTABLE if you don´t do it the right way.  Well, Elder Cornish helped us find the way--just teach them what GOD wants them to do, and offer your help.  Often, we try to help them get baptized because WE want them to get baptized.  I learned how to get myself out of the picture and help the investigator strengthen his or her relationship with God.  It´s fantastic, and I really feel like a better teacher.  That´s definitely the highlight of the week.
Today we went to Jarabacoa, a town up a little higher in the mountains.  We went to a BEAUTIFUL waterfall (I didn´t bring my camera, but I´m hoping my friends will send me lots of pictures soon) and a nice hike, and we played some sports and relaxed at the Church.  Another good day.  I love this country, it´s really beautiful.  We made lots of sandwiches, and took them up with us, and played some frisbee.  We used our Taz hats that we bought together last week, it´s really fun to wear something exciting with your comp.  You miss having a really good friend.
There are domincan girls here, watching me type, amazed that I can do it without looking.  Now, they´re asking me if I know their friend who also lives in the United States, who is named Isabel.  Next time, I´ll lock the door of the internet center.
Yeah, the church runs way smoother in the States.  Man, the stories... if I hadn´t seen these things with my own eyes, I don´t think I´d believe it if I hadn´t seen it.  It´ll take a while for me to get used to normal American life again, surely.
Senso´s not baptized yet, but we´re still working with him.  His daughter got pregnant and had a miscarriage, and it´s been a rough week.  We´re working on it.  He´s excited.  We have a lot of people that are excited about baptism now that we know how to really teach people about baptism.  I think it´ll be really successful next transfer, hopefully I get to stay.  I could be writing you from a different place next Wednesday, we have transfers.
I´m sorry the cat´s annoying.  If it´s any consolation, our neighbor has a little chihuahua that tries to enter our house, and we had to put up chicken wire to keep him out (the door is just metal bars, it´s not actually a door) and he poops ALL OVER the back patio that we share with our neighbor.  It´s not very fun.  I can´t decide if it´s worth complaining to our neighbor or if I should just suck it up and deal with it.
Organization is SO ESSENTIAL!  Man, I just never realized how much basic things help in organization, and how much easier life is when you are organized.  I had forgotten for a little while with all this insanity of this country.
By the way, I´m not going to be a very punctual person, I don´t think, when I get home.  To people here, 3:00 and 3:30 both mean that you were on time, even if you were supposed to be there at three.  You´re not actually "late" til 4, and it´s not that embarrassing to be late cuz it happens all the time.  The whole Caribbean is very laid back, I expect.  I´ll have to work hard to get accustomed to punctuality again. 
Yeah, Zoe told me "suck it" with love.  I don´t know that many things would change if we put in President Romney anyway... I´m losing my faith in politics.  They have to spend so much time worrying about their popularity, they can hardly worry about actually helping the people who need it most, so things just don´t get done.  Sometimes I´ve noticed that people are super critical, and when, as a leader, you do your best to solve the biggest problems, people don´t want help or think you´re dong it wrong.  I definitely plan on being more supportive when I get home, especially when I´m uneducated about decisions.
I´ve seen a couple quinceñeras around here, and always wondered what happens.  I wonder if that tradition has a little bit to do with why there are lots of pregnant 15 year old girls... they think they´re women?  I don´t know.  Either way, it´s disgusting.
Aww... I miss buffets so much.  I would love to eat various foods until I´m stuffed.  Here, I get stuffed quite a bit, but only on rice.  And I miss dinner.  I´m gonna make my comp pork chops and rice this week.  YEAH!  I would´ve loved to be at the party, just to mix with the Spanish-American culture a little bit.  I´m excited to see what it´s like, to keep practicing spanish and stuff.
I love you Mom, Dad, and Becca, and Cody!
Yeah, Jessica sent me a letter, telling me that he´s 26 and Jimmy´s not happy about that, but that Brittany´s happy and it sounded positive.  Weird, weird, weird.  She´ll be married before me.  She´ll have kids before I´m married.  Weird, weird, weird.
Love you all!
Elder Taylor

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