Hey family of mine,
How are yáll? I´m glad you got to visit with Ladee and Kirk. That´s super cool.
Mom, I´m glad your flowers are growing and that you got to eat an abundance of vegetables. When you look at Ladee´s lemon tree, you can think of me too... they´re all over the place here. Things are progressing-ish with the hna who had the dream. She loves learning more, and she loves reading the BoM with us, she just has a big family with lots of responsibilities, so it´s tough to find time to teach her and she has a hard time getting out the door to church, but she´s great. Her family is super pilas (like, great).
Dad, that´s cool that you and Lance are homies. I miss normal (non-flea-bitten, with both ears and tail, without flesh wound, clean, friendly, etc) dogs. Someday I´ll be able to cuddle a woof woof again. I can almost cuddle this one puppie of familia Cano. His name´s Bull and he´s really cute, he just likes to bite me with his pointy puppy teeth, so cuddling gets a little tricky. I don´t envy your drive home, but I do envy your California quality time. It´s a great place to be and even greater when there are people like KLAC to spend your time with.
Thanks for writing and for all the love and support.
It´s thundering right now. It´s been raining for three days. We get soaked a lot. The other day, we entered a house and within 30 seconds, it started POURING. We were trying to have a lesson, which is really hard with tin roofs, but I think it went well. My favorite part was as we were singing (ok, let´s face it: shouting) the opening hymn, Oh Little Town of Bethlehem, and the very first line was talking about how peaceful and silent everything is (as the rain pounds racously on the correagated tin above our heads). I just couldn´t handle it... I just had to laugh manaically. Afterwards, we prayed, and I offered it in the loudest shout I could muster, but even so, when I screamed ¨amen,¨ everyone was still in prayer position, so then my comp looked up and screamed amen in the ears of the investigators. They caught on. As soon as we finished the lesson and said the closing prayer, the rain stopped very abruptly, making us think maybe God wanted us to be in that house at that moment.... We stepped out the front door and into the very muddy road when I realized that I couldn´t possibly forge through all of this without ruining my last pair of shoes (I gave away my other non-hole-y pair), so I took them off to cross the river (aka the street). You may be thinking, what a stupid idea, but if I had had my camera with me, you would not be thinking such things. The water was half way up our shins, and we had to get to the other side (as a side note, the ¨why did the chicked cross the road¨ joke is not a joke here. It is a legitimate question that people ask several times a day, because chickens are always crossing the road for no apparent reason). We made it across just fine and I put my shoes back on. Then we got to the next river (aka the next intersection) and I realized this would be a long day of taking off and putting on my shoes. We finally made it to the calle principal and crossed over to dirt roads of the dionisio. At this point, I saw the water rushing down the dirt road, carrying big fatty rocks with it, and I remembered the plethura of glass, trash, and random scary pointy things that line the streets of Honduras. It was in this moment that I realized that I can always buy new shoes, but I cannot necessarily buy new feet. So I made the plung. Let me just say, when it rains here, the rivers which are the streets are super strong, and I was glad to have my shoes as a sure footing, because we almost got swept away like 3 times. It´s not dangerous, it´s just inconvenient. Also, it makes VERY slippery mud. I slipped like 5 times and almost went down in full mud and water. Happily, I have a companion, so when I started to go down, I grabbed her and pulled myself up. haha.
I can´t remember if I´ve told you all that the power goes out all the time here. Usually it goes out during the day here in Olanchito, but this week, it went out once in the night time. We have a mission rule that when the power goes out after dark, all missionaries have to enter their houses. I always thought this was a stupid rule... until the power went out after dark. It was so dark, I couldn´t even see my own hand in front of my face, and suddenly every punk in all of Olanchito decided it would be a good time to go Gotham City on us. Luckily we were walking with some young men from the ward (one of whom is the biggest, most intimidating man in all of Olanchito), so it wasn´t so scary, but it was super hard finding our way home. We were super blessed in the whole situation. First becasue we were with those young men. Second because we were relatively close to home. Third because we had just bought mini flashlight keychains (because all of the elders in Coyoles told us about when the power goes out after dark) for our backpacks and candles for the house. Fourth because we didn´t have any super important citas to go to. It was super creepy though. People change in the dark.
This week we had the privilege of meeting some strange (but harmless) people. We were shouting at the door of one of our investigators when suddenly we heard, ¨don´t worry. Don´t get discouraged.¨ We turned around and saw this man walking toward us. He then proceeded to tell us, ¨If they don´t want to accept you and hear the word of God, brush the dust off your shoes and move on.¨ He then started to walk away, but when he saw our puzzled looks, he told us again, ¨don´t worry. Brush the dust off your shoes and move on.¨ Hahaha. I´m pretty sure we won´t be condemning the city quite yet. Also, that´s a priesthood ordenance, so that´s not really a concern for us.
One of the sisters of one of our investigators asked us, ¨hey when´s your next baptism?¨ We responded when the next one was if she´d like to see how baptisms are in our church. She said, ¨I want to get baptized.¨ Well that was a surprise. We´re going to work with her and see how serious she was. haha.
At least three times a week, we teach the zipotes lessons. We all either sit on the curb of the boulevard (their are I think 5 paved streets in Olanchito and that´s one of them) or in the street and we sing hymns and teach them the lessons. We´ve decided we are Wendy and they are the Lost Boys. But really. It´s actually super sad. Almost all of them live by themselves or with an aunt or grandparent. Their parents all live and work in other bigger cities. They´ve got some tragic life stories. We´re hoping to undo that.
I met a very small dog named Pulga this week. Funniest thing of the whole week. (Pulga means flea).
Things are good, God is good. Never give up and always go forward in faith.
Love you all oodles,
Hna Bayles, the barefoot missionary
p.s. Tell Marylin Allen I say Hello and I love her!
pps. Same for the Whitings and the Waites and the Hilbi. :)
ppps. And everybody else. Cause I love them all. haha. :D
pppps HAPPY BIRTHDAY JIM!
ppppps Is Nancy still alive? Does he miss me? I would like picture evidence, please. :)