I dont think that a week could have gotten any better than this week. Although trials are destined to come into our lives, with the companion of personal righteousness, we can ask the Lord for a one week blessing advance and almost be guaranteed immediate help!!! I have a ton of stories, and only a couple minutes, so im gonna kick it down a gear and pump this email out!!!
I have yet another nasty food to add to my "foods that will probably cause intestinal worms eaten in the Philippines by elder Muller" list. It is called "bugok." Now, with a name like that, it cant be too pleasant right? CORRECT!!! I have always seen the people selling it on the motorcycles, but I never tried it. It is the eggs that are broken-the ones that wont form a fetus because they have a defect...they throw them together and cook them into this egg loaf thing. It is the WORST smelling thing that I have ever had the misfortune to smell in my life:/ Like, rotten eggs nasty-cause thats what it is. When you ask natives about it they say its "bulok" or rotten...and they live here so I dont even want to know. Elder Miranda and I saw a guy selling it so we decided to buy it. I tried some with his homemade hot juice stuff and I couldnt have chewed it for more than half a second before I spit it out faster than you can say coo coo kachew, and spent 2 minutes spitting on the side of the road while the Pilipinos laughed at me cause they know how gross it is. Elder Miranda ate two bites and was like "oh man elder...I cant finish this. Ugh!!!" He was about to throw it to the side of the road, but I stopped him and was like "wait...I want to be able to say that I have eaten it." I reached in and took a little peice out. I decided that I was going to chew it once, and swallow it as fast as I could. Quite possibly the worst decision of my life. I chewed it once and was immediately grossed out by the texture. It is really hard to describe...like this spongy dry nastiness. I could barely get it halfway down my throat before I practically threw up all over the place. I spit it up and sat there heaving for the next minute or so. It was quite possibly the NASTIEST thing I have ever eaten-cooked rotten eggs...next story...
In the mission you make a lot of friends. Elders, sisters, mission presidents, senior couples, members, non-members, etc. There is this girl here in Majayjay that caught my eye the first time I saw her. Haha no, not caught my eye as in ill be calling you in a month telling you I want to marry her, but caught her eye because she seemed like a little me. She is a young woman-age 15-by the name of Cherie (pronounced Cherry). The first time I saw her, she came to church with rings on each finger, an enormous 4 inch long steel cross hanging from her necklace, in ripped jeans, with a purple shirt on. She is best explained as a "black sheep." The first time I saw Cherie, I noticed something in her-almost as if I saw potential. It is hard to describe, but its what I saw in her. Over the past couple months she has kind of become a little sister, and I thought she was getting closer to the church...until what happened last friday
I feel like I should put a chapter heading here because if this was a book it would go here in this story so...
Elder Miranda and I had just gotten done an appointment at 8:23 at night. We were about to go home because the work here is really hard at night and after 8 oclock, there is nothing. Plus we take our dinner hour at night after we get back so, usually, 8 is when we go back. But, as we came out of the lesson I felt we needed to go visit a member who had given us a referral. I knew the odds of us being able to contact the referral were slim to none because we had gone to her house a couple days before and the referral was still in Manila. I dont know why we decided to go visit her, it just seemed like the right thing to do. As we were crossing the bridge to cross into barangay Banga, we saw a bunch of people huddled around this person-who was crying and screaming. I looked at elder Miranda and he looked at me and we hurried over to see what was going on. The girl looked like she had been through vietnam. She had no shoes, her clothes were covered with dirt, and gravel. Her hair was all over the place, and she was crying and screaming. At first I didnt notice who it was, but elder Miranda was like "elder...uh...thats Cherie!" I got closer...and it was. It needs to be known that Cherie is a lesbian. She is yet a kid, so hopefully that will change. She hangs around kids she shouldnt hang around-ones who most definitely dont follow either the law of chastity or the word of wisdom. We asked what happened and to our horror found out. Cherie had been hanging around with her friends when they started drinking. She drunk and drunk and drunk to get rid of her depression (pressure from parents to become active again in the church, the want to fit in, troubles regarding her future and studies right now). She came at the point where she couldnt drink any more...but her friends didnt stop. Now, I have had enough experience with enough drunk people (from teaching them to almost getting into fights with bunches of drunk guys...but I dont include those stories in my emails:/) to know that there are different levels of intoxication. There comes a point when the person will either pass out, or be so drunk that they cant handle any more and they, although drunk, will have enough common sense to stop. There is also the level that is only attained when you are a chronic alcoholic, or when you are forced that your body cant take it anymore. That is the level that Cherie reached. She cant weigh more than 90 pounds, and after she wanted to stop, her friends took her and made her drink more...and more...and more until she was in excrutiating pain. Cherie, crawled to the bridge, hobbled up and over the waist-height stone fence, and was about to throw herself off when a passerby saw her, ran to get her, and ripped her off the fence-saving her life. We arrived when she started throwing up an ocean. Cherie was in pain-she had fell down the hill earlier when she was climbing up to the bridge and was covered in wounds. Her friends were trying to hide her-they were just going to leave her there (which pissed me off. People in the Philippines, although I love them to death, have no standards-hence 14 and 15 year olds getting pregnant left and right. Had they left her there, it is 100% sure-confirmed by members later-that she would have been raped time and time again by passerbys. You have to realize that the Philippines run off power, money, and corruption. Its NOT a nice place to live), but when she was found by the young man and pulled down, they needed to cover their tracks. They were going to take her to this house of someone they knew and leave her there until she could walk again, but we stopped them and told them to wait there because we were going to go get help. I was about one inch from just picking her up in a cradle and carrying her to bishops house. I may not be the strongest lad, but I can most surely pick up a 90 pound 5'4" filipino girl. BUT, I didnt know what would happen to me if I did. She is a young woman, and I am an elder. So, we decided not to. We sprinted up the hill to the nearest member and got him, and ran back down to the bridge...but they werent there. We asked this old guy there where she was, and he said that they had taken her to this house up the street where "people would take care of her." We hurried up the street to find her being ripped out of the tricycle by people-despite her crys to stop-who claimed to be her friends. Before they had left, there was this random guy who offered to take her to his house and help her. I am so very thankful that the Lord prevented that from happening. Brother Pableo, who moves 250KG pigs all day (and is ENORMOUS) practically ripped the tricycle apart getting the friends away from Cherie. To make a LONG story short, she, after the proper process, was fortunate enough to recover and not get alcohol poisoning. The problem is that she not only tried to kill herself, she was almost raped by the guy on the bridge that offered to take her to his house (one grown man against a couple of girls with a 16 year old kid in the darkness of night? Not that hard to assess who would win if force was used.), and was almost stashed in a house of people she doesnt know. A little heart wrenching-plus the story is a bagillion pages long, but that is the summary of what happened Friday night in Majayjay, Laguna. Fun times right??
I had a funny experience the other day with a couple of kids. I was teaching this 12 and 10 year old with their friends and I had just gotten done teaching prophets. I asked "now, who is our living prophet? Thomas..." and this awesome little 4 year old was like "THOMAS AND FRIENDS!!!" in english referring to the thomas the tank engine show that plays here. Funny stuff hahahahahahaha.
I have a quick question mom, could you include a watch in my next package? Just some garbage one from walmart. I kind of need a watch:/
I hate to have such a crappy email. I dont have any awesome spiritual experiences in this email although this week was full of them-cause I now have no time left...next time maybe!!!
Love you all,