Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Baptism Soon?

Hey all,

Your letters were great as always and It's good to here that all is going well in Calgary and that the weather is getting better.  Things here are going quite well.  We had the interview for baptism with one of our investigators and now we're just working out the kinks and getting the date and everything else ready.  Which is freakin awesome!  His name is Ricardo, he's the one that got married a couple of weekends ago and now he's ready for baptism, so that’s good.  It’ll be great for the entire family.  Aside from that we've been working to find more new investigators and teach as many people as we can.  Finally, the weather has cleared up a little here too.  It's been overcast for the last 8 days or so and raining everyday too.  We got back in contact with Nube the other day and found out that she's been going through a really hard time.  Her ex-husband is being a jerk.  He is planning on going back to Ecuador and leaving her with no support money for the kids. The government here is also talking about sending her son back to Ecuador, even though she is legal and he was born here.  Finally, her mom recently contracted cancer.  So suffice it to say, she could really use some prayers and I'm sure she would appreciate it if you'd include her in your prayers. 

I can’t remember if I've told you about this one guy that lives in Peekskill.  I saw him my first week here in the area and he always starts talking to himself or whoever else, about how dumb the Mormons are and blah blah blah.  It's really kinda funny and I look forward to the times when he sees us and walks past us.  It's gotten even funnier recently because he's changed from Mormon mode to JW mode.  Now he assumes we're JW's and talks bad about them when he sees us, which I have no problem with, it's almost like he's working to help us and remove the interest in the JW church that others might have, especially seeing as New York is like the JW Utah. 

Another funny thing that happened today is that Elder Fotu decided to clean the bathroom and grabbed a bottle that he though was 409 (like fantastic) and then sprayed it all over the bathroom.  He then noticed that someone had written “PER” on the bottle.  After he sprayed it he came to ask me what “PER” meant?  To which I responded.  "You didn't spray that did you?  That's permethrin."  (A really dangerous pesticide that if you spray indoors you have to leave the house for the whole day.) So now we're stuck outside with nothin really to do. Elder Fotu also told me after the fact, that permethrin is illegal in NY, but since the Church is an  organization, they get to use it.  So yeah, just an event that I figured I'd share with you.  I thought it was kinda funny.

As for Chester I think I know what the problem is.  He misses me.  Duh, it's because I've been gone, he never tried to run away before I left did he?  I didn't think so, so that must be the only reasonable answer.  You’ll just have to wait for about 16 more months and then it'll be alright again.  But hey, you have to give to him credit too; he's a pretty smart dog, having figured out how to open the gate.  You can’t really call him dumb, just a coward.  Just tell dad though that he really doesn't need a 3rd eye.  Maybe just try an electric collar.  I've met a couple of dogs here that it seems to work pretty well for.  Now as for dad and using my bike, that's totally cool, (as long as you buy it a new front fork.) JK, you can go ahead and use it.  It’s actually a very comfortable ride.  And as for your question about talks, I haven't given one yet.  I've been rather lucky and this ward really likes to use its members for most things and not the missionaries.  They feel that it strengthens the membership within the ward. 

The church uses Sprint for their phones and but I think the way you did things for me worked out quite well, just buying some international minutes.  Otherwise, I'd probably go with Verizon or something.  She shouldn't really need to be making a bunch of calls.  Texting is much easier and then if she does need to make a call, just keep it short.  Is Sarah going to bring my laptop with her?  Finally, I have faith in you dad, keep shedding those pounds.  I myself would like to put on 20lbs of muscle to bring me up to the 190-195 range, but that is rather challenging as a missionary because we really don't have control over our diet and not entirely enough time to sustain whatever muscle we do gain except from walking, which is even harder when you’re upstate and a lot more driving is involved.

Now finally, about my birthday.  I'm really not sure what I want, some ties would always be nice and to be a little more specific, ties that go with a blue or brown suit, and that aren't striped like [///] hope you get the idea.  But if they look really cool it's alright.  They don't need to be super conservative, like all red or blue... some different colors would be nice.  But I'll try and think some more over this next week and I'll let you know some more ideas in my next email.  Bye for now, 

Elder Dilling

P.S.  I got a ticket for turning left where there was a no turning sign that I dint see, so I'll have to use some money to pay that off.  The ticket doesn't tell me how much, and I'm going to court on the 31st.  I'll let you know what happens next week.  Have a good one.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pretty Stinkin Good

Hey all!

Ok, so I'll start off by answering your question about the Gopher Hunting.  The O'Bray's was great, especially if you stay in a truck or something and shoot the little creatures from there.  Tanner and I had some pretty good success out there.  I killed a couple gophers that Doug's Zombie killer would have been perfect for, just outside my door, like 5 ft away.  JK that would be a little overkill.  I did find though, that the lever action was the best gun out there.  I had the most success with it.  

By the sound of things, everything is going pretty swell.  Especially Sarah getting to speak at seminary graduation.  Go Dilling family, rockin the seminary grad talks.  Next in line, Christina!! Woo Hoo!  Was Sarah as excited about it as I was?  Cause if I remember correctly I really wasn’t all that thrilled about the opportunity.  And I'm sure Mom’s excited to not have to go to the church anymore after work once she finishes this course, but it's definitely a blessing to have so many buildings at the disposal of the members.  Now as for my journal writing, it's getting better, but still not perfect.

On another note, that youth conference sounded like a freakin blast, running around with swords and what not sounds like so much fun, not to mention you were reenacting the best part in the Book of Mormon!  You should read and use chapter 47:1-19 in a family home evening lesson with everyone some time.  Read/act it out and then you can discuss how Amilikiah is kinda like Satan and we can’t let our guard down with Satan, even the slightest bit.  It's a fun lesson that I like to share with people.  But yeah, that really sounded like a super well put together conference, I applaud whoever was in charge of that, like I said, they just should have done it all about 3 or 4 years ago.

But now to the work, things here are looking up, we had a very successful day yesterday and on Monday we were finally able to get in contact with Nube again, who still seems pretty solid, just she's been really busy and is looking for a different place to move to as her current apartment is too small.  We also went to a house the other day looking for a potential and found out he moved, but the guy inside asked us to come in and share some words of comfort with him.  Now I know that my Spanish is far from perfect, and I really had no Idea what to say to him, I kinda gave a little “help me” glance at Elder Fotu, to which he gave me an “it's all you” kinda shrug.  So I decided shared Ether 12:27 and Mosiah 2:41, with him, I'd shared this scripture with a few other people in the past, and I think the Ether scripture is a particularly good one.  After wards, the guy asked us if we could come back and talk a little more with him, so we set up a return appointment for tomorrow and left him with a copy of the Book of Mormon.

Anyways, I really don’t have a ton to add and I'm running out of time on the computer, but just know that I'm lovin life and things are going pretty stinkin good here in New York. 

Les Quiero Mucho,

Carson/Elder Dilling.  Whichever you prefer to call me.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

5th cycle in Yorktown

Alrighty, so Sunday was really great.  I loved getting to talk to each of you, and to find out how everything was going.  I think it's kinda funny what happened with Chester.  Maybe you should put up an electric fence. JK.  At least the guy didn’t make you pay the $100 fine.  And congratulations Christina!  That’s amazing getting 1st in the 600m.  It seems to me like you Sarah and Daniel got the sports genes.  I just have the video game genes :)  But in all seriousness, congratulations, that’s awesome.  Also congratulations to Sarah for the Pan Am thingy, too bad you can’t do both UTEP and the Pan Am thingy.  But hey, you’ll have a fantastic year at University.  It's SOOO much better than high school.  Just make sure you are self disciplined, because it's so much easier to not do everything you should be doing when away from home.  Now another thing I thought was cool was that I could understand what Dad was trying to say in his email, and the only word I didn’t know/couldn’t figure out right away based on context was "Falar."  So, I've decided that when I get home I want to learn Portuguese.  I was thinking, I'd teach dad better Spanish and in return he'd more or less teach me Portuguese.  I don’t know, what do you think dad? 
As for the shot calls, no one got shot.  Myself and Elder Fotu are going to be staying here alone for another cycle.  What President Smith is doing is turning this area into a Zebra area, which means that we are now in charge completely of teaching both English and Spanish.  Woohoo.  Unfortunatley I was kinda hoping to get transferred out, not because I don’t like this area.  I love it.  But I kinda want to get to see different areas and meet different people at some point.  Hopefully I get changed soon.  But hey, it is what it is.  And I know that President Smith receives revelation for what happens during the transfers, so obviously there’s a reason why I am where I am.  But anyways, that’s what’s happening with me.  I still have the same address, so don’t worry about changing it in the ward bulletin.  And as for Dad’s question about me writing people, no I haven’t yet, but that’s on my list of things to do for today. 
Anyways, I really don’t have a whole lot to add since Sunday either, so I'll end it here.  I hope everything continues to go well with each of you, and I love you all very much.
Com Amor,
Elder Dilling
P.S.  Thanks for the pics of my car.  I did get them all.
Carson's beloved car, Shirley (sold on May 1st))

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Some Pictures

Ok, so first I want to ask.  Do you have any pictures of my car because I don’t and I'm really hoping that you do because I want something with which to remember “Shirley”.  Also, I wish I could have gotten a little more notice (but don’t worry about it) so that I could have told you to tell the guy who bought the car what her name was and finally, as for the whole thing about getting a new car when I get home.  Don’t worry about it.  Remember when I called home at Christmas Grandpa Smigel told me he'd give me his TL.  So all is good. 
 Aside from that, that hockey game sounded pretty legit.  I've actually been kinda following the playoffs through the members here and although it pains me to cheer for them, I've been cheering for Vancouver and Washington. To answer your question about the teaching of English people, to be honest we really haven’t been teaching anyone.  The work has kinda slowed down here a little.  It's been hard, but that’s just the ways things are occasionally.  Also, I finally brought my camera and stuff so I put up some new pics and a couple videos. 
Daniel:  Good to hear that all is well with you and that you are enjoying grade 6.  It’s probably getting pretty close to those finals that you've gotta take right?  (I don’t remember what they're called.)  I'll bet you’re excited for that!  Flag football will sure be fun, but I'm starting to be much more a fan of Futbal, and Volleyball.  Currently those are my favorite team sports.  But you didn't really ask me any questions so I have no answers for you right now.  But that’s ok, you can ask me any question you want on Sunday.
 Christina: The weather here is very overcast, but..  SUPER GREEN.  Everything is so freakin green the night is darker here because all of the streets are covered by trees and they don’t really believe in having street lights.  But aside from the gloomy aspect, it's nice and warm, so that’s great.  As for the Spanish it's getting better little by little.  I can communicate with people more or less now.  Congratulations on making the high jump team.  Personally my favorite event when I was in track was the 3000m mainly because I wasn’t very fast and that’s the slowest running race.  The 1000m is still pretty fast.  If you’re gonna do that one, make sure you really train for it.  I'm sure you'll do great.  Also, good luck with Chester.  Has he gotten much better at listening to people yet?
 Sarah:  Unfortunately I can’t write to you since I haven't received a letter back from you yet.
 Dad: Just kidding Sarah!  Gotcha, (I hope) I agree with you about sushi, well at least for the majority of it, some of it is good.  It also smells terrible.  I had a roommate at BYUI who made it and it stunk up the whole house for like 2 days and no, Spanish people don’t really have any special Easter dishes, although, I have been asking the members to cook us cuy (guinea pig).  Anyways, that’s about all I got for you for now.
 Dad: for real this time.  That’s kind of a cool story about the drunk guy.  My drunk story is about this guy I was teaching who was obviously drunk off his rocker, but didn’t want to admit it.  Anyways, he wanted to pray so we let him and in the middle of his prayer he jumps up and starts yelling and grabs one of our pamphlets and refers to it as the bible and well it was just a mess.  It was a fun experience but a mess all the same.  I have another story to tell you, but I don’t want to tell all of them, I need something to save for the phone call home.  Which I have been thinking about and I think the best thing to do since we don’t really have any set plans is I'll call you on Sunday some time after 2 your time.  4 my time, and then from there you can call me back.  Just make sure your afternoon is more or less free.  Also, what mission is Sam going to again?  I've been meaning to write him, but it just keeps slipping my mind.  I am looking forward to talking to you on Sunday.
 Mom:  Last but certainly not least.  Good to hear that your class is going well, as for Jessica, that’s crazy, I don’t know how someone could be that willing to be apart from their husband, especially after only like 2 weeks of being married.  Is he a member of the church?  As for Tanner that’s quite the journey he's taken to come to his decision.  But hey, we all learn from life and lessons are learned through many different paths.  I'm sure he's had experiences doing things this way that I'll have to learn another way.  As for the transfer thing, I'll be receiving what they call shot calls on the 9th.  Those are the calls that inform you about who's leaving and who’s staying in an area. 
 Anyways, I'm gonna save the rest for the phone call on Sunday.  Until then I hope all continues to go well.
Elder Dilling
Inside of the "missionary mobile"

Our new missionary wheels (Subaru Imprezza)

No explanation required

One of my favorite ceviche ingredients - squid!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

No Letter?

I can't believe how short your last email was!  Don't you love me any more?  Just kidding! It must have been a finger slip or something because I know you really wrote more than a couple of lines and I will look forward to seeing them next week.

Anyways, unfortunately we still haven’t had an opportunity to give Nube a date, she wasn't at her house last Wednesday, and we haven’t really had an opportunity to go back to her house recently, so we're hoping to change that within the next couple of days.  Wish me luck; or better yet prayers are always nice.  Aside from that our other date is also getting pushed back once again. His work has been really busy, and has been keeping him from meeting with us and from coming to church, which makes things really hard when you’re trying to baptize somebody.  But hey, what can I do, everyone has their own agency.  Aside from that we are trying to find new people to begin teaching.  On Monday we had a Mission Training about the importance of finding people to teach.  This also happens to be the least enjoyable thing to do.   The most enjoyable being teaching people.  But I can't do one without the other. So.. Elder Fotu and I think we are going to have to make some new goals for the coming week, which might also be my last week in this area.  I've been here for about four cycles, and I think there’s probably a high chance that I leave at the end of this cycle.  So next week will be potentially my last P-Day here.  I'll find out the day after mothers day. 
On another note, I went on a split this last week to Danbury with the companion of one of my Zone leaders.  His name is Elder Kropf, and he's been here for about one cycle less than I have so I thought that it was going to be a little interesting with both of us being new and speaking Spanish.  But it turned out to be much easier than I thought that it was going to be we actually ended up teaching a first discussion to somebody that we door knocked, it was pretty cool and I was amazed at how even though we don’t know much, the Spanish that we did know was definitely enough to allow the spirit to be there and to work through us to convey our message this Older Gentleman.  It was just kinda cool to think back afterwards on how much my Spanish really has gotten better since I got to NY. 

But that’s about all I got, as you all know I'm not much of a writer.  But I love you all even though you didn't actually send me an email this week.  I live you all and look forward to next Wednesday and the Sunday after that when we can talk again.
Les Quiero Mucho,
Elder Dilling