Wednesday: Sister Curameng and I forego'ed the shopping because I needed to pack and she has a tiny store in Siaton called 'Migs' that she can go to with her new companion on Thursday. I couldn't do laba because it didn't have time to dry, so I had to take like a weeks worth of dirty laundry to my new area. I got smart with packing, I moved my luggage downstairs before beginning the packing experience because I knew there was absolutely no way I was going to get that full suitcase down the stairs if it was full. I would perish. That night when we went out to work I didn't tell anyone I was transferring. I know, I'm rude. More like a 'SURPRISE! SHE'S GONE!' for my companion. That night when we got home we just talked it out, our fears and expectations for the upcoming transfer.
Thursday: I got up at the crack of dawn, packed up my last minute things, and we got my luggage down to the chungie and onto a jeepney. It decided at that exact moment when we left the apartment that it was going to pour down rain. LYFE. Shortest transfer of my life. We got to the Ceres station, I waited there for my new companion to arrive, I loved her as soon as I saw her.
SISTER ATIENZA! She's 4'7", weighs like 5 pounds, has long black hair. She's adorable, and so sweet. We speak in Visaya, so that I can improve. She's teaching me a little bit of Tagalog too, so I can become doubly bistak, but just a few words. I'm focusing on Visaya jud. She's from Batangas which is pure Tagalog, but one night when we were FTE'ing we encountered a group of men who speak Tagalog and she discovered that after 3 months of Visaya she can't speak Tagalog anymore. It was pretty funny. I admire her for enduring the FTE.
The Zone Leaders drove us to the apartment, I love it, it's small, I have my own bathroom with a flushing toilet and everything! My first flushing toilet since I got here. We jumped into studies because it was still early, and during lunch she asked me "Are we going out at noon?" and I just looked at her confused and was like "yes..." it wasn't until later that day that I realized, it was her first day out of training which means that she leaves at noon now. During training you leave the house at 1:00, for extra training stuff, but now noon. I felt bad, I didn't even realize. I was ready to just get to work, but she killed it nonetheless, she is a powerhouse teacher and FTE'er. She was trained well.
Sibulan is a beautiful area! We tracted on the beach my first few nights. As in, wonderful view of Cebu island! It's so fun. There was a giant group of people trying to get a boat into the water by rolling it down the beach on bamboo logs, there were children knee deep in the water looking for salowocki (sea urchin) for dinner. It was just picturesque.
Our last appointment of the night was these three girls named Miller, Trixie, and Carla. During the lesson i killed a mosquito that was sucking on my leg and Miller says "thou shalt not kill" I was stunned beyond all belief. Then she, and I kid you not, grabbed a fan and said "So you don't kill anymore mosquitoes". She's so funny, she likes to give me a hard time. I sang "where love is" from the children's song book because they like my American slang (accent) when singing.
Friday: the senior couple worked with us for the last time before they go back home to Oregon. It was my first time translating a lesson. I was translating for them everything my companion and the investigator were saying into English, and then had to turn around and translate everything they said from English to Visaya. I think I'm a seasoned missionary now. It is not an easy task, but it was a lot of fun.
Miller informed me I have bad Visaya. I'm telling you, she makes fun of me. I just laughed it off though, I love her.
Saturday: Vanessa (the investigator I translated for) has a son, his nickname is Dodong. He usually is terrified of white people. In two days flat he has become my best friend. We play hide and seek, we're tight.
We had a baptism! A really sweet couple, it was really nice. It was Sister Atienza's first baptism she was so excited! While we were there a boy from Germany shows up (he's on vacation here with his family) he was with two girls that live by the house he's staying at. I quickly discovered that all the German I learned in high school has been replaced by Visaya and I know zero German. I was talking in Visaya to the girls he was with and one of them turns to him and says "You should be like her, she speaks our language." I felt bad, because he's only here for a few weeks, and I've been here for 6 months. Anyways, he was really nice.
I found a really delicious halohalo place on the beach that uses all fresh fruit. We're going there again today, it is fabulous.
Sunday: We are officially out of food. and out of rice. We have reached crisis mode. We were supposed to shop of transfer day but we didn't have money. We are currently surviving off of biscuits. New missionaries bear their testimony in sacrament meeting on their first sunday in an area, that should be tradition in America too I think. It's a lot of fun. I just stared at my comp to get through it, my visaya was okay though. I had no idea what I was going to bear it on, and then I got up there and just started talking about the family. Umbot.
After church we went to Dumaguete because Sister Atienza was getting her patriarchal blessing! While I was waiting outside Sister Hartog showed up (WE'RE CO ZONE AGAIN) and I just ran at her saying "SAY IT AIN'T SO!" and we tackled each other in a hug. I missed her dearly. We're staying in the same apartment in Cebu so it's going to be a blast.
Then a family of people I ADORE from Bacong showed up! I didn't have a chance to say goodbye to them, so that was a real tender mercy.
We went to a bukid part of our area that afternoon. My comp said we would be hiking, I was like "haha yea whatever, i hike all the time. my whole mission has been bukid". No. I was not prepared for what she meant. It was like legit hiking up a mountain, grabbing on to rocks, and everything IN A SKIRT! It wasn't bukid. It was super bukid!
We extended a baptismal date for the people who live up there so we have two new IBD's! On the way back down the dangerous mountain side, Sister Atienza slipped and fell and now has a massive bruise on her leg. poor thing.
Monday: Right when we woke up there was a brown out. Curses! Luckily I had water in my bucket so I was able to shower. Then right before studies the water came on again. tsk tsk tsk. Life is never dull. We went to Dumaguete again for District meeting, lingaw kaayo. Sister Hartog was there. We were able to be companions for practice teaching, that was a lot of fun. We had KFC for lunch, I ate something called a zinger, I think everyone should try it.
One of our investigators that night requested a priesthood blessing because they had fevers and so we called the Elders, they didn't have oil with them, so they borrowed it from a member. The bottle was from 1988. As in, the bottle of oil is older than I am. It was really interesting.
Wednesday: We're back again. Well the personal study I want to share with you is two weeks in the making.
It's the story from the New Testament after the Resurrection of Jesus Christ where he meets his disciples on the shore and they rejoice together. And then Jesus asks Peter three times "Do you love me?" I was studying Jeffrey R Holland's talk from October 2012, it's a beautiful talk. His reply that he creates for the Savior is absolutely heart wrenching, and has really put my mission in a new perspective. He said: "Then Peter, why are you here? Why are we back on this same shore, by these same nets, having this same conversation? Wasn’t it obvious then and isn’t it obvious now that if I want fish, I can get fish? What I need, Peter, are disciples—and I need them forever. I need someone to feed my sheep and save my lambs. I need someone to preach my gospel and defend my faith. I need someone who loves me, truly, truly loves me, and loves what our Father in Heaven has commissioned me to do. Ours is not a feeble message. It is not a fleeting task. It is not hapless; it is not hopeless; it is not to be consigned to the ash heap of history. It is the work of Almighty God, and it is to change the world. So, Peter, for the second and presumably the last time, I am asking you to leave all this and to go teach and testify, labor and serve loyally until the day in which they will do to you exactly what they did to me."
I've been trying the past two weeks to, every time that I get tired, or even a little bit lazy, remember the words here. Sister Curameng said it best in zone training meeting "It isn't supposed to be easy. We are supposed to work hard." I wish I had my journal with me, I have her exact quote there.
The point is though, that we need to remember our job here. Exactly the reason we are here. I reread my call this morning, it talked about how we are expected the live the highest standards of conduct that are expected of a servant of the Lord, and if we do, then we will be endowed with power. Alma and Amulek were given power of the Lord, and only then were they able to work the miracles.
I love Sibulan. I love being a missionary.