Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Week 18: Dasmarinas

Hey family! I'll reply to Dad’s letter today because I feel like I usually reply to Mom’s letter.

Sounds like things are going great in Flagstaff, Arizona! Speaking of Ben and Sam’s basketball, I played basketball this morning with a couple other missionaries and some local teenagers. It was super fun. My companion, Elder Matina, is pretty much unstoppable, being 6'3" 260lbs, he’s a pretty good post player as you can imagine. He's Shaq and I'm Kobe! Also, I am extremely close to dunking. Every morning for personal exercise, I'm going to start doing some calf raises and squats and get my vertical back up to where it was during track season, 36". Give it a month or two, I'll be dunking. :)

You know, we actually don’t have the Ensign here, we get the Liahona, which is like a mix of the Ensign, New Era and Friend, so I haven't read that talk yet, but I hope too! I love President Monson, he really knows what he doing haha. That last part of the quote, the part about us being the Lord's hands, is actually the Cavite Mission's mission theme! Sister Tye picked it when the mission was created back in June, I think it's actually an original quote by the big bad Gordon B. Hinckley himself. I really like it, it’s a great quote. It definitely is very important to always strive to serve others, no matter the circumstance! Every member a missionary also!

This week has been great, hot, but great. Like extremely hot. Very very very very hot. From 12:30 to 3 it’s literally so hot we can barely step in the sunlight. The moment the clock turned 12 we started sweating and didn’t stop until the sun went down. Brutality. 
But we are starting to find more investigators and some less actives in our area also! We still don’t know the members super well, but we should start getting to know them better because we have like 4 dinner appointments this week! Last week we had NONE. We starved, I probably lost weight. Maybe. I probably lost weight just from sweating so much actually. Then combined with little food, I honestly may have lost weight! Crazy. Anyways, we found 3 families this week who are interested in hearing from us, it’s awesome! During the lesson, the father in one of the families was like "there are so many churches and I just don’t know which one to attend! I feel lost. So I started thinking maybe we don’t need religion to save us. But then I had a talk with my sister and she said that having a religion and a familiarity with God in life is very important, so I said I would continue looking for the right church. That was 3 days ago, and then you guys show up at my door!" 

That was an awesome spiritual experience. We told him that his situation sounded a lot like how Joseph Smith felt, and he exercised his faith by praying to God, asking which church was true. We invited him to do likewise! It was sweet.

Oh also, last night, we were walking around an area of ours that we hadn't really done much exploring of yet, and saw this white guy talking to 2 teenagers (Filipino obviously), so we decided to go practice our English speaking skills and talk to him. Turns out he was Dutch, from the Netherlands. But he has a house here in Dasmarinas because he’s getting old and the winters in the Netherlands are pretty freakin cold I guess, so he’s here for like 6 months of the year. Anyways, we were talking with him a little bit and he started gettin pretty weird, sayin stuff about the "young girls" here in the Philippines. It turns our he was actually a 58 year old Dutch man trying to get with 19 year old Filipino girls. So we got outta there real fast. Very uncomfortable situation.

Oh also, I forgot to mention last P-day, I got my birthday package! And it was awesome! Thank you guys so much! Especially Ben, those Pink Dolphin shirts are dope. And I can’t believe you guys got me the Blvck Scvle Philippines shirt! It is tooooooooo cool! Thank you guys so much! Most of the candy I gave away to members in Bacoor because actually I received the package on my last day in Bacoor, about two weeks ago. I'm sure they were happy about the candy though! But I saved the Lindt chocolate obviously. ;)

Anyways, that’s about all I have to say this week! Mom about the Chino pants, my size is 31x32, 31 inch waist and 32 inch length! And a khaki/tannish pair and a black pair would be awesome. Thanks! 

Also, something’s up with my camera, it hasn’t been working too well the past couple of days, so I'll keep you guys informed on that. 
But I love you guys, I really do! And miss you all too.
Elder Lasley! :)

Week 17: My First Transfer

Hey Mom!

I only have 15 minutes left in the computer shop (unless I extend, which I may so if I do, disregard this sentence) so this may be short! Okay nevermind I extended 30 minutes :)

I did transfer I did I did! I am now in a city called Dasmarinas, which is about two cities farther South than Bacoor, so it is up a bit higher in a mountain range! So it’s a little bit cooler (emphasis on a little bit) and we get a cool breeze every now and then! It's also much cleaner and smells better than Bacoor did haha. My new companion situation is super cool! So my companions name is Elder Matina, and he is a 6'3"  half Samoan half American! So actually he’s American, and was in the MTC the same time I was! We are the exact same age in the mission ahahah! I met him maybe once at the MTC but never really got to know him, and now we're companions! So he’s in my same batch ahaha It’s pretty awesome. We get along great and have a very similar sense of humor, which is awesome. 

The area we are in, Dasmarinas 2, used to have only 2 missionaries in it, but Elder Matina and I were just added to it because they split the area, so we are doing what is called a shotgun, where neither of the missionaries of the companionship have ever been in the area where they are serving. ahah so its pretty wild! Neither of us know the area, the members, the investigators, anything really, but we do get a lot of help from the other two missionaries in our apartment who know the area quite well, Elder Haufano a rugby player from New Zealand, and Elder Tinasas, 5 foot Filipino. We have quite some diversity in our apartment. 

Anyways, that’s all about my life for now, I don’t really know enough members or investigators to have any stories to tell or anything like that yet, but stay tuned! 

Well its about time for me to go now! That’s all I have time for this week, I'm sorry! I'll send pictures next week, I promise. I love you guys and miss you a lot!

Elder Lasley

Week 16: My Birthday!

Mom! its your son! I'm mostly going to reply to Dad's email this week because I believe I replied to your last week, but I'll answer a few of our questions now! About the chinos, I cant remember what size the ones I'm wearing here are, but there probably 31x32 like most of the pants I wear. so if that is a possible size, that would be fine! And I would like a khaki/brownish pair and a black pair! Also, I have another pair of khaki ones that I'm pretty sure I left at home, if they are still at home, could you send those too? So all in all if you find those ones from home, I would possibly be receiving two khaki/brownish pairs and one black pair! Oh, actually if they have a conservative navy color, I would take that over the black. alright yeah that’s all. :) Awww I wish I could be watching American Idol with you guys! I heard there's no more Randy and there’s a new judge in place of him!? NO MORE RANDY JACKSON? Is that even legal? But oh cool, Salt Lake City auditions should be interesting! I'm gonna reply to Dad's email about my week and stuff so watch for that one! I love you! Byeeeeeeeeeeeee _______________________________________________________________________
Dad! and Ben and Sam and Mom! Hey you guys! Sounds like things are going great in Flagstaff! Busy busy busy man. Basketball and lacrosse and W.L.Gore and Associates and driving everyone around until Ben gets his license, crazy! AND now you guys are celebrities with your picture in the newspaper! Flagstaff celebrities! Has anyone asked you for autographs? You guys are pretty much famous! :) No but that’s really cool though haha. At least you look pretty thug in your picture Dad. And how the heck is it already my 19th birthday?! That's crazy! I've been on this earth for 19 years! And 0.5 of those years I have lived in the Philippines! That means for 1/38 of my life I have lived in Asia! What? Crazy. So the transfer day got switched to Thursday for some reason, so it is no longer on my birthday. But that means I get to spend my birthday in my first area still! Yay! And yes I am most likely getting transferred. I officially find out tonight if I will be, but I'm pretty sure I will be. I'm a little bit nervous, a little bit excited, but I'm fine with whatever happens! Whatever it is it’s meant to be. ahahah I totally understand the missionaries now that I am one. When an appointment falls through, called getting punted, we just say "hmm what members live in this area?" and go give them a quick visit! ahah and we always know the member that cooks the best. Anyways, this week was just fine! We did quite well in our work this week, We had a lot of appointments, and the ones we were punted from ended well because we were able to go to other people so it all worked out yay! We have a group of three investigators that we are focusing on lately. They are the cousins of a member, three young women, 13,15 and 17, and they are great! They are super interested and love to ask questions and have them answered aha. They’ve come to church 3 times now, so they are really looking like great baptismal candidates. We're excited! Other than that, everything is pretty normal. Tonight, we have a family home evening at the famous Nanay’s s house, the 85 year old feisty grandma, who is by far the best cook in our area, and I think they are planning on celebrating my birthday! They already gave me a gift (which I opened early) of a sweet new journal! So tonight should be fun. This week, before transfer day, I'll most likely spend a lot of time packing and cleaning and saying bye to members and investigators that I've gotten close to, but that’s really all, not much work will be done before Thursday. There’s never much work on a transfer week. Anyways, I'll send some pictures now! I love you guys, and miss you all a ton! Love, Elder Lasley :)

BIRDEMIC 2 in the Philippines.
But look at all these cranes! geez a criminity.

If I wasn't a missionary, I would steal so many cats.
I'M THE CAT MAN skiptilfj be do bop kflkg bfbe do bop
get it, like the skat man? :)
 Filipino Sunset, otherworldly.