Elder Gardner

Elder Gardner will enter the MTC on Wednesday, June 23rd. We will keep this blog up-dated every week with his letters and pictures. If you would like to write to Elder Gardner, please click on the "write a letter" link on the right hand side for directions and his address. If you don't know much about Mormon Missions read the "about missions" page to learn more; it may help you understand some confusing terms in the letters.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Fiesta (office week 8)

There is always a party in the offices. Especially the week of transfers. Quick overview:

It all starts Sunday nights. At six o´clock the farewell fireside for the missionaries going home starts. The housing coordinator is in charge of the technology for said fireside. I get to set up everything to be able to show two video clips and make sure all the sound works. Well, I tested it all out before the meeting and there was no problem. So the meeting started and half way through came the time to show the first video. I pushed play and for some reason there were subtitles (the mission president had specifically told me not to put subtitles; and when I tested it before hand there weren´t any). Then, when I tried to turn the volume up I got some major feedback. The microphone wasn´t plugged in when I was testing it earlier. While I was trying to figure out how to turn off the mic, president came over and had me unplug everything and plug in his own speakers. That fixed the problem until I tried to show the other video clip a few minutes later. For some reason Windows Media Player froze and I couldn´t get the video to pause or go full screen or anything, but it kept playing (that´s what I get for using a PC!). So President made an announcement over the microphone, ¨fortunately I´m a scout and I´m always prepared.¨ He busted out his iPad and had me plug that in. That worked just fine. I felt like a failure, but afterwards President told me not to worry about it; there are always technical problems. ¨Always plan that everything will fail.¨

With that experience out of the way we went to the offices to work on transfers. Elder Nielsen made all of his phone calls, I updated the phone lists, the asistents did their thing, etc. At two o´clock we finally left to go get some sleep just to wake up at seven. We headed back to the offices to wait for everyone to get there. All the elders that are changing companions come to the offices to find their companions and then leave again. It is a crazy mess. I play church videos the whole time hoping people will sit down and watch them, but everyone just wants to talk to their friends (can´t blame them). There are a ton of taxis outside waiting for the elders to take them back home. Lots of missionaries taking the opportunity to talk to me to ask for things. Cell phones to change out, mattresses to change from one apartment to another, etc. Around three everyone had finally left and we were able to eat lunch.

There were six elders who were waiting for flights to either go down south or go to another mission; so four of them stayed with us in the offices. We have two bunk beds and two people slept on the floor. At four in the morning three of them left in taxis to the airport. The other one stayed with me in the offices the next day while everyone else was at the mission home with the new elders that just got here. It was a holiday so nothing was open and I didn´t have much to do except go through a box of electronics. Sadly, none of the 12 american elders that were going to come have visas, so we only got 7 latin missionaries. The americans should be here within a month.

On wednesday things were pretty calm. Thursday we had a zone conference and one of the APs left to go down south and another one came. O yeah, I forgot; there are two new APs with us. Both of them arrived in the mission the same time as Elder Kelly and I. Their names are Elder Bruce and Elder Beck (Elder Beck was one of my roommates in the MTC). They are both really cool and it´s lots of fun with them here.

Friday (yesterday) Elder Nielsen and I went on a road trip to the hospital. He had an eye accident a while ago and we just went for a check-up. Everything is great with his eye, and it was fun to see all the fancy machines they have at the hospital. It´s one of the best in all of Argentina. Today, p-day, we went bowling and then went to get some ice-cream cones. Bowling and ice cream, two of my favorite things.

As for preaching the gospel: we finally were able to figure out why this little girl doesn´t want to get baptized. She wants to, she was just afraid of telling her grandmom. So we made some plans for her to tell her grandmom, and she should be baptized this Sunday. We also have been teaching this 13 year old girl with a hard life. She has been going to all the youth activities and really enjoys it. So things are going pretty good there too.

Well, that´s about all the stories I have for this week. As always, life is crazy and I don´t know what is going on. But I´ve learned that is the way things normally are. God takes care of the rest of it. We just have to do the best we can.

Hope everyone has a great week!

Love you lots,
Elder Gardner

That´s what are apartment looked like the night after transfers.

That´s right. I won. Two strikes at the end to break the hundred.

Left to right: Elder Bruce, Elder Beck, Elder Nielsen, Me, and Elder Kelly

That´s a huge ice-cream cone. Way expensive but way worth it.

We call it office ping pong.

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