Saturday, January 23, 2010

Happy New Year! Stranded...AGAIN!

January 5, 2010
Dear Mom and Dad,
I don't even know where to begin right now. This week was so awesome I probably can't describe it in words. New Year's Eve was incredibly awesome. We had a branch party outside the house during the day that was mostly for cooking all the food. There was so much. I took pictures of it so you can see how much rice these people eat. As the sun was setting Elder Kuss's dad brought over a large stereo. We blasted Chuukese music and hung around. We turned the light on in our house and the church so it made a little bit of light on the basketball court. That became the dance floor. Chuukese dancing is different than American dancing and I enjoyed watching it. Elder Cherrington and I would run out occasionally to get the party really going and the members really liked it. We had a ton of fun with everyone and we would throw out a bunch of candy every now and then. When midnight rolled around all the "teams" came aorund and did their routines. For New Years the Chuukese always form their teams with a bunch of people and walk around the island screaming and banging on pots and empty cans. As the teams would come they would dance for a bit and do some fun stuff for everyone. We would throw candy to everyone as they were about to leave to celebrate. About 2AM we got too tired and went in. It was impossible to sleep though because the stereo was going all night. All the members slept outside on the grass. Well some of them at least. A lot said they never went to bed.
I thought that was the only night people would party, but it carried over for the next night too. The Chuukese consider the party from midnight to the next midnight. We didn’t stay for all the partying on Romonnum because we had stuff to do on Paata. We went in the afternoon and didn’t get too much done because when we got there everyone was out in their teams. That night things got really rowdy and we stayed in the house for safety reasons. Luckily, there is a fence around the property so it was really safe. We were curious to watch some of the excitement there so we climbed up on the roof and watched from there. We carried our mattresses up later and slept on the roof but it started raining about 1:00 a.m. so we went back in. New Year’s on Romonnum was more fun than on Paata. I loved it.
You’ll never guess what happened to me when we were there. Siramino was supposed to pick us up on Saturday around noon. We got all ready and waited . . . and waited . . . and waited. But he never came. THREE PAATA TRIPS IN A ROW! It is so frustrating, but then I realized it just doesn’t matter. I’ve learned to take things as they come now. We ended up going to Church on Paata which was fun. We had nine people there total. I ended up teaching Sunday School to all of them. They don’t have a very functional branch. It is hard with only nine active people (three of which are under 3 years old). After Church Siramino showed up and we went back to Romonnum. As soon as we got there, we had to get to work and do a bunch of stuff. It was a hectic day. Monday came and we got back on our normal schedule. It is good to have things back to normal now.
So I’m going for a record now on my longest time of being on Romonnum. We won’t go in for another week until zone conference. It will make three weeks straight out here. Since I’ve been here for so long it will be awhile before you get any letter from me. Sorry about that. I can’t really do anything about it.
So, update on Elder Kuss. He went to Guam last Saturday to have a test done on him. It is more of an in depth physical and we will find out the results on Thursday or Friday.
Work went well this week and we’ve been getting new investigators. If they understand the Gospel, they will work hard. Nothing else really matters when someone understands it. The Gospel encompasses all the important things of life like family, faith, freedom, etc. It is hard to see those who reject the Gospel miss out on something so amazing. I hope you are both doing great and had an awesome New Year. Thank you so much for everything you do.

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