Tuesday, January 31, 2012

This is the Place!

Alright, well I'll start off I guess by confirming the address.  You got it.  But I'd still probably say it's better to send packages to the mission office.  Mainly because I don't know when they'll get dropped off, and it's not like Calgary where they'll just leave a package on your doorstep.  So yeah, just send it there.  Scarsdale is like 20 minutes from where I .live, so not too far.  If the package is one of those padded envelopes and it fits in a box like 4x4 then you could probably send it to my apartment, SO it's up to you.

This area is normally referred to as Washington heights, but the missionaries commonly refer to it as Dominican Heights.  It has a higher Spanish population than my last area which I'd say was like 55/45 Spanish/English but here it's definitely a higher ratio, so yeah I'm super excited to be here serving.  My area itself though is smaller than my last one, but its way cool.  It's also a lot nicer, well at least the buildings are nicer inside.  I'll send some pics next week. 

Anyways, I was walking out of the apartment today to come write my email and I just got this way cool feeling like. This is where I'm supposed to be right now.  So yeah, I'm super pumped to be in this area.  The Ward seems way legit too.  It's not quite as big as my last ward, but from what I can tell they're more willing to come out with us to appointments and from what I could tell on Sunday it just seems more involved in the missionary work.  More so than the Spanish wards I have been a part of so far.  As for my district it consists of four Elders and two Sisters.  Myself and Elder Head, Elder McDaniels and Elder McMullin, and Sisters Major and Sanders.  So that's cool, I get to serve around Sisters which hasn't happened to me much yet, but the district is way cool.  

As for investigators, we've got a few of them, but most exciting of all, we have a baptismal date.  It was for this Saturday, but he still has problems with coffee so we had to post pone it until next Saturday.  His Name is Jesse, and he's just this way humble quiet man, who’s been investigating for a long time and just has so many trials in his life, but he really wants to take this step and I hope so much that he'll have the strength to quit coffee in order to make this change.  His wife is recovering from a brain tumor and he recently lost his job, so things are just hard for him.  But yeah, that's one guy we're working with.  We found another family on Saturday as well as a few other people that seem pretty cool.  As for my Spanish it's still improving and even though I feel completely comfortable speaking it I know there's always room for improvement.  But yeah, things are going pretty good.  Unfortunately I really don't have any cool stories for you right now, but I'll try and have some cool spiritual experiences and stuff by next week.

Just a couple questions I had for you, did you ever live in the 17th ward, or the West Stake.  Elder Head has a sister in law who is from that part of town and thinks she had some Dillings in her ward at one time.  Also, what is Jason's current address?  I've wanted to write him but don't have his address.  Anyways, that's life here in the Big Apple, I hope all of you have a fantastic week and all continues to go well.

Love, Carson

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Hello Manhattan!

Hola familia.

I guess that the first thing that I should tell you is that, I'm in a new area!  I've been transferred to North Manhattan!!!!!  Woohoo!!  And my new Companion is Elder Head.  He's a way awesome guy from Clinton, UT or something like that, and he's like the same as me.  Same likes in just about everything which is way cool.  Oh, also I'm a District Leader again, so that's cool.

But yeah, so as you thought, I don’t really have all that much time because of transfers and stuff, but I'm here in Manhattan as I said.  So here are the answers to your questions:

1. How did the baptism go?

The Baptism went great.  Unfortunately I won’t be there to see him get confirmed, but the baptism went swimmingly. 

2. When it snows in New York where do they put the snow they clear from the sidewalks?  And how fast are the sidewalks cleared?

As for your question about the snow, I honestly don't know yet, I've barely seen any snow, and none of it has lasted yet.  But upstate it was cleared really fast.  So I'm not really sure yet about the city.

3. What is the best food you had in the Bronx?

The best meal I had in The Bronx would probably be... I don't really know…I just love like all Spanish foods so much.

4. How many kids did the largest family in your ward have?

The largest family in my last area was like 4 or 5 kids.  Most families are pretty small because the houses here are really small, so yeah, that's a result.

5. Did you see many vandalized cars on the streets of the Bronx, like in the movies?

My area in the Bronx was pretty good.  I've only seen a few broken cars and only two where someone stole the rims.  But I'm sure it happens more in the South Bronx.

6. What are you eating for breakfast these days?  Are you including fruit?

I've normally been eating just a bowl of cornflakes with some bananas.  So yeah I eat fruit and stuff.

Anyways, that’s about all the time I have left for today.  Talk to you next week.

Love Carson

P.S. I used some of the personal money to buy some True Religion jeans for 35 dollars.  It was awesome.  I bought two pairs for way cheap.  But yeah, just thought you should know.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Ready for a Change...

Well I'm glad that all is well in good ol' Calgary.  Things are also pretty good here in New York.  Transfers will be happening next week, and yes Dad, they're every six weeks.  So for this transfers I'm really hoping that I get some kind of change, whether that’s a new companion or area I don’t care, I just want something to change, mainly because I want to serve around other people, and meet new people.  Currently I've served two seven month spurts in my areas, and that’s a long time.  Especially seeing as I only have like 8 months left more or less.  But whatever happens, I guess it is what it is, and I'll accept it without complaint.  But we’ll see, I'll let you know about that next week.

This week though we've had a couple pretty cool experiences.  The first one is just a funny one.  So Elder Hulme and I were waiting for the bus, and unfortunately the route we were waiting for wasn’t the most reliable one.  Se we're sitting there waiting, and we hear this crunching noise (the one that happens when someone gets rear ended).  So we looked in the direction of the sound, and saw this little green VW Golf, and a big Ford E-250 van or something similar in size.  And the funniest thing was the sound was being made because the van was pushing the car, kinda like a tow truck would pull one.  We both just looked at each other, and thought "WOW only in the Bronx!!"  So yeah, that was on Thursday.

Then on Friday we were going to a few of our appointments and we arrived at one and found out that she was holding a bible study group, so at first I thought “dang, this might not turn out very good”.  So they invited us to join them and we just quietly sat down and listened and eventually one of the people turned to us, and kinda in his own way asked, I know that Christ is my savior because of the scriptures, and I can know him.  How do you know what you believe?  SO I was like wow, that’s quite a question, so I explained a little that I'd have to do a little bit of background before I could answer his question, which he was cool with, so we began teaching the restoration to this group of four people who meet together often to study the scriptures and stuff.  And eventually we got to the end of the restoration, and it was kinda cool to say that this (the Book of Mormon) is how I know what I know, and how he can know it too.  We then followed that up by giving him a copy of the book and committing him to begin reading it and praying to know if it was true.  So yeah, it was just a really cool experience, and then to finish it all off we said a prayer.  One of the others did it, and the funny part of the prayer was that they read it out of a study book thing, so we finished our lesson with a recited prayer.  So yeah, we have a little way to go with these people but I think they definitely have a chance of progressing if they do their part.

And then since then we unfortunately haven’t had all that much success finding people.  All the people we've found have juked us or just had something come up, but the work continues to progress and go forward here in the Bronx.  I also have a baptism this Sunday which should be good.  His name is Jesus.  He's a nine year old who’s been coming with his aunt and recently we found out that the cousin of Jesus is actually the Second Counsellor to the Stake President which is cool.  So we've asked him to do the Baptism of Jesus.  So yeah, that’s the other stuff going on in my life right now here in the Mission field.

Umm... yeah, I really don’t have anything else to add today.  I wish you all a good week and hope all continues to go well and that it goes well at the home show.
Love, Carson

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Happy New Year from the Big Apple!

Dec 28th email from Carson: Well it was so awesome to talk to y’all on Sunday (Christmas Day).  Not all that much has changed since Sunday.   I'm somewhat jealous that you’re out skiing right now, but that’s cool.  Things here in New York are going pretty swell.  We're just looking for a few new investigators to kinda take the space that Mark and Angel left after being baptized. 

But yeah, the Christmas season has come to an end, and as great as it is, I'm kinda glad.  Mainly because here the people were really busy around Christmas, and we've lost contact with many of our investigators, but hopefully we'll be able to find some new people whose hearts are softened by the Christmas Spirit.  I know they're out there, now’s the time to find them.  But yeah, that’s about all I've got for this week.  I hope all goes well, and that you all have a wonderful ski trip.

Love, Carson
                                                               Our Christmas Tree

Jan 4th email from Carson: Hey everyone, Happy New Year!!  It seems like everyone is saying that, even 3 or 4 days after the fact.  Anyways, things are going pretty good, we had a good New Years Eve playing board games until 10:30 and then we got the amazing opportunity to listen to college parties going on above and all around us till like 1:30 in the morning.  I think I was the only one who was able to fall asleep and stay asleep through all the partying.  So that was nice.  I got a decent sleep.  But aside from that it wasn’t too special. We had to come home early, and when we got home we just chilled till bed time. But yeah, it was great.  And before I forget too, I have planned to write the letters today along with a few other letters that I have to send and have written, but I just want to stick them all in one envelope.  So you should get them in a week or so.

So Elder Hulme and I more or less take turns approaching doors, although it seems like he does more of the English doors, and leaves the Spanish ones to me.  Not that he can’t speak Spanish, he's just kinda gotten into the habit of using me as a crutch which I think is kinda funny.  It's mainly because I'm his trainer, and that’s just kinda what you do it seems.  I know when I got here I did the same.  My trainer did all the speaking, and I just tried to do what little I could.  But yeah, we normally just whoever’s closer to the door does the talking and that normally is pretty half and half. 

Our chapel is a building itself.  And it has a parking garage below it.  It's pretty big seeing as it's the stake center, but the funny thing is that it's not big enough to hold the stake, so we have to rent buses and use a chapel that’s not even in our stake boundaries  (my last chapel actually).  But it's got very few windows, and what windows it has are really barred up.  And the whole thing is just red brick.  I think I've sent a few pics of it home.  Just look for a building with a white steeple.  And the nice thing is that it's not too far away, normally we take the bus to get there, but it's within walking distance as well.  Although for me, everything is within walking distance, it's just a matter of how tired out do you want to be at the end of the day?  So yeah, we take the bus to church.

For laundry we have to go to a Laundromat not too far from our house, and I don’t really air dry much except for the normal shirts I wear, because I still don’t want them to shrink.  But everything else goes in the dryer.  It normally takes just under 2 hours to do all my laundry on P-Day.  And as for dry cleaning, I've only dry cleaned my suits once my whole mission, and that wasn't until I hit my year mark, and to dry clean two two-pant suits cost about $25.00.  So I avoid doing it too often.

And as for the snow, we still don't have any, but the weather has finally gotten cold, and I'm more than done with it already.  Yesterday was bitter cold and windy, so I've decided that one cold day a year is enough for me with a good number of chilly days.  I don’t like the cold at all.  Mainly because it's not fun.  I can’t believe how warm Calgary has been! 

But yeah, that’s about how things are right now in the Big Apple.  Today we're having a Zone Dodge ball tournament, and then after that I'll start writing letters. I hope you all have a great week, and that all goes well for you.

Love, Carson
My Zone