Monday, October 28, 2013

A Brazilian Pace is faster than you think!

Hello Family and Friends, 

I don't have much time this week to write, so I will just send a quick note to let you know that I am fine. While it´s been getting colder there, it´s been getting hotter and hotter here. Seriously, I've never sweat so much in my life! Not even biking in Kansas! I´m loving it though.

Brazilians walk on a completely different level than us! Especially missionaries! I think that we are currently averaging a minimum of 5 miles per hour at ALL times. More than that if we´re late (which is often). I think that I´m definitely getting skinnier, but I´m still a little fat from all of that southern food/MTC, and the other elders in the apartment always play with me and say that I´m gordinho (little fatty), but I think that they only play with me like that because I´m not and because my companion is quite a bit heftier than me, but they don´t say anything to him. One day we walked for about 6 hours at a Brazilian pace so think between 25-30 miles. Most of the time I think that it´s just 10 or 12 miles... maybe more. Who knows? I have no way of knowing the distance other than by pace and time.  I also have no idea how hot it is here, because people just say HOT. Because once it gets this hot that's all you can basically say!  My shoes are awesome - no blisters or anything, and my toe is completely healed!
Anyways, things are definitely starting to pick up now that I´m starting to get the hang of Portuguese. It´s actually surprising because the missionaries in my apartment said that I´m speaking better than most of the American missionaries they know that have already been out for months! My weakness is understanding what people are saying, because even the brasileiros say that the people in Cear√°, or Fortaleza, all speak super fast! It´s been fun, but very different. They also speak in a local dialect which means that they can understand me, but I can't understand them.

I´m a little scared for this Thursday because I will be on a companion exchange with another American who only has 6 more weeks here than me!!! I think that it´s be a disaster, but we just need to plan things out carefully the night before and be prepared for the day to come. Anyways, we have ridiculously high goals here, but as I´m starting to learn the language I can see us starting to hit them. My advice for everyone is to press onward. There´s nothing else we can do in life than just to push on through. If we are continually striving for something better, we will see improvements in every aspect of our lives.

That´s awesome for Abbey!!! (a friend who was called to serve in the Mexico City Mexico Mission.) I can´t believe that all these people are leaving on missions!!! Caleb is leaving next month, right? I´m super excited for all this!

Here are some of the interesting things that happened this week:
  • The police here pull people over by pointing an AK-47 at them and shouting ´PARA´ (STOP) .... I was more than a little nervous when I saw three policemen on two motorcycles pull over someone ... Kind of scary. 
  • I got to see the beach (sort of, where we were was mostly rocks) for the first time. 
  • I almost bought groceries at this supermarket called 'super chicken land'.  
  • Our washing machine broke, creating what I call the sea of the bathroom. We´re still waiting to fix that... 
  • More drunk people. 
  • We kind of made a our apartment... Totally safe! Haha we had a lot of fans so no smoke stains or anything.... I know, probably a stupid idea...
~Elder Colvin

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