Friday, October 4, 2013

4 October 2013 - Update (IN REAL TIME)

I would like everybody to know that this week (and every week here on out) I am on top of things and I am posting this email mere moments from when I received it. Hence, the update in real time. I would also like to take the opportunity to let you know that if you email Kieren at she is currently online and would also read it in real time! Which would be kind of neat, and also it would make her day. Here is her letter from the week, I think it exemplifies everything I love about her:

Dear family and loved ones,
What a lovely week here in São Paulo! It went by so quickly and now I have to write about it in less. We only have 45 minutes of email time (strictly monitored by teachers) so forgive the shortness of the letter or typos.
Português is amazing! I love speaking with the natives during refeicões and learning about the culture. They have the coolest doorstops here. There is a little latch on the back of the doors and a knob in the floor that the notch catches on. I don´t know if that makes sense, but it is so convenient for opening doors and keeping them open without woorying about moving around a doorstop. Also, most places don~t have rolls of toiled paper, they have something like an upside downh kleenex dispenser. It is super weird but kind of cool haha.
So today I went to my first official Churrascaria! Woohoo! It was called the Simpático Gaúcho which is roughly translated the nice cowboy. Porto Alegre is the capital of meat and gaúchos and all that jazz so I am super pumped! We ate all sorts of new meats like chicken heart, pumba (warthog), ox, and other things I am not sure of. It was great fun! Everywhere here always has arroz e feijões (rice and beans) and they always go together. Always. I don´t think I will ever be able to have an almoço o jantar (lunch or dinner) sem arroz e feijões when I get back.Dinners here always have at least two, usually three meats, arroz e feijões, lots of colorful fruits and vegetables, bread, more arroz e feijões, a sobremesa (dessert) and juices and guaraná and stuff. I actually got to have the real guaraná at the churrascaria. Good stuff. hopefully my instructor will send a picture of us at the restaurant because we are not allowed cameras outside the building but she is.
Today is obviously Pday, and I got to go on all sorts of other great adventures, like Sonja´s (a store where I got a jersey from a team from Porto Alegre) and the candy store where I got some delicious brazilian fruit candies. The temple, as always, was absolutely amazing and gorgeous.
I have learned so much from my district. They are such amazing people. All the elders are 18 but they are very mature for their age. Our district leader, Elder Thurgood, shared his experience about receiving his mission call. he was his high school´s quarterback and did track and choir and all sorts of stuff so basically everyone knew that when he got his call and he said he got to share the gospel with so many people that way. I think that is one cool thing about people being able to go when they are younger, that they can share it with people in high school and stuff. He reminds me of Gavin (sorry if I embarass you) because everyone looks up to him and he is funny and nice, but knows what is most important in life and knows when to be serious and be a great leader. He leads the district in unity and dignity.
Right now, we have two investigators, Samuel and Carol. They are so amazing! They both are so willing to try reading the scriptures and praying. Carol is struggling with problems at home, but she has such great desires to create a happy home and have the spirit always in her life. It reminds me of the scripture in Mosiah 2:41 about the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. I have felt the Spirit so strongly here and especially when I teach about the happiness that the gospel brings when we are obedient. I just want todo mundo to be happy! (That´s how they say everyone).
English is hard. Also, I can speak Português 50 times better than Spanish at this point even though I have studied Spanish since first grade and portuguese for such a short time. The gift of tongues is real.
I got to play for a special musical number with my friend, Elder Tello, who is an amazing singer from Argentina, I think. It was a wonderful experience and it has been so great to have so many opportunities to play the piano and share my talents here. So much fun!
Até mais!
Sister Smith

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