Calling home was definitely the highlight of this week! It's kind of interesting, I've heard from a lot of missionaries that calling home is kind of a bitter sweet. That it's great to call home, but for the next couple of days afterward they have a really hard time working because they just want to go home. But for me it wasn't like that at all! For me, afterward, I felt really energized and ready to work. Elder Bucknum told me that it depends a lot on the family- some families are really good and positive (like mine!). But other families talk about how much they miss their missionaries, and how hard it is at home without them. Which is obviously really hard for the missionaries. Thanks for being the good kind!
After calling we stayed the night in the other missionaries' house, because the buses to Panchimalco don't run on Christmas in the afternoon.
Saturday was a crazy day. Saturday we did interviews for the people we were going to baptize this week. While Elder Alvarez (the Zone Leader) did the interviews, I had to talk to the families and fill out the Baptismal Register. One of the people we are baptizing is named Alicia. She is about 27 years old, but all her family lives together in the same compound. (This is pretty common, a space with a bunch of different buildings, the kitchen, a family room, different bedrooms). Obviously she is old enough that she doesn't need her family's permission, but she was expecting them to support her. During the interview I talked with the family trying to get them to help me fill out the register, and I found out that the mom does not support the baptism. At all. I got yelled at for about 10 minutes. The mom is probably only about 65-70 years old, but people age faster here, and she looks like she's 80-85 ish. But she is very strong in her opinions. That was a really interesting experience. You'll be proud to know that I kept my cool, and was very pleasant the whole time. The interview went long, and it was kind of awkward sitting there for another hour afterward.
I finished Saturday completely exhausted, I almost fell asleep on the bus back home. (we finished the interchanges in San Salvador and had to take the bus all the way back). We also had to buy presents for the white elephant exchange that we are doing as a zone. There is a tourist section of the ride back home that is notorious for having bad traffic, and Elder Torres and I had a great idea. When the bus got stopped in traffic we jumped off and ran ahead about 1 km to one of the little souvineer huts to buy the presents. By the time we finished the bus had caught back up to us and we jumped back on for the ride home. It was pretty risky, because it was the last bus home, but it worked out really well!
Sunday I woke up super super sick. I had what they call Los Chorros. Which translates to 'the gushes', more or less. I don't think I need to explain more, but it was the worst diarrhea I have ever had in my life. I felt completely drained. (heh). But we had two families that we needed to take to church. So I took the maximum dosage of the diarrhea medicine I brought and packed my bag with a roll of toilet paper and an extra pair of garments.. We have to climb a pretty steep hill to get to these families, and the whole time I kept telling myself the story of Brigham Young and the other missionaries standing up in the back of the wagon yelling 'Hurrah for Israel'! It worked! I survived all the way through sacrament meeting. Then I went to the house of the Planes missionaries with Elder Garcia who has chikunguyna pretty bad. And we just fell asleep. They had ran out of toilet paper the day before, so I was really glad I had brought my own. After church Elder Torres and Elder Bucknum came home, and they thought it would be a good idea if they went out to work and left me in the house with Elder Garcia. I had a feeling that it was going to get worse, and I didn't want to be sick in someone else's house, so we decided to get me home. By that time I was starting to feel pretty achy too, I think I had two different sicknesses. The travel home almost killed me. When we got home I just collapsed and fell asleep. Elder Torres gave all of our lessons that day over the phone. He woke me up at about 7:30 ish to try to give one lesson. But I couldn't do it, I felt too weak. I didn't eat or drink all that day, and I'd been having diarrhea (the worst I'd ever had), and I was really achy all over. I could stand up, but the walk too the bathroom was too far. (sorry if I'm going into too much detail :) By this time I was also getting the chills, and I was getting pretty scared, because I had no idea what was going on. But I realized that I was probably really dehydrated. So I started drinking as much water as I could. In sips. I called the nurse and she told me I probably had parasites. ( I'm taking a test for that today). I asked Elder Torres for a blessing, and went back to sleep.
Monday, This morning I woke up feeling great. I feel perfectly fine! I'm not sure exactly what happened yesterday, I never want to go through that again. Today I will take a test for parasites, but as of right now I feel fine! Dont worry!
Sorry for going into so much detail, but I had the time so I thought I'd make the most of it!
Have a great week!