Thursday, October 31, 2013

October 21, 2013, At Home Sick this Week

Greetings from Laura!

There's sadly not very much to report this week because I was home sick most of the week.  I got a nasty cold in my chest and I also have a fever off and on for three days.  I forced myself to go out and work Tuesday, which was a bad idea because then I felt worse.  We didn't go out Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday so the week felt really long.  I got a chance to write some letters, sleep, and do laundry, so that was nice.

I still have a bit of a cough and crap in my lungs, but I'm doing so much better than before. I hope that will fully go away in a couple of days.  

One day this week Sister Samuel made boiled bananas to go along with some meat and vegetables she made for lunch.  Oh man, they were so gross.  I guess they eat these a lot in Vanuatu.  The bananas get really hard, flavorless, and starchy.  They kind of tasted like a mix between potatoes and taro.  I actually ended up eating them with ketchup (I know, it sounds disgusting) and I liked them better that way, but now when I think of them I just want to throw up.  It really was the waste of some good bananas!  

You can see a grave behind them

The wards here all had conference this weekend.  They get DVDs sent from Salt lake that have it translated into Marshallese.  I don't know how the actual translation is, but the pronunciation is awful!  They've got to all be returned missionaries that are now working for the church.  I don't know why they don't get some Marshallese people that live in Salt Lake to come work for them...I'm sure they'd do a much better job.  At least the pronunciation would be better.  I think about 3 members came on Saturday to the Laura ward, but a lot more came on Sunday.  The building was so hot though.  I'm surprised as many people stayed as long as they did.  It didn't feel terribly hot, since I'm now more used to the heat, but I was dripping the whole entire time.  My shirt was completely soaked with sweat and sweat dripping down my legs kept tickling me.  We took a break between sessions to sit out by the lagoon and eat, yep, you guessed it, marshallese donuts and orange koolaid.  Not very many stayed for the second session, which I don't blame them.  I don't know why we had to be there, since I didn't even try to listen (I wouldn't have gotten anything from it, even if I did understand).  But we had some investigators come, so that was good.  

We have conference tomorrow and Wednesday at the Weirs' house in Long Island!  I'm excited to watch it, spend time with everyone, eat good food, and enjoy AC all day. It will be a really nice break.  

We've gotten a few more senior couples in the last month.  One couple is doing something with helping people find jobs and another couple are CES missionaries.  One couple just came this last week and they'll be the senior couple for Ebeye.  They all seem very nice.  I think there are 6 elders and 2 sisters on Ebeye right now.

I think Annie asked how many sister missionaries there are in the Marshall Islands, so I thought I'd respond here so everyone can read.  Right now there are 2 in Laura, 2 in Ajeltake, 2 in Long Island, 3 in Delap, and 2 in Ebeye.  There used to be sisters in Rita, but we've had a few go home recently, so they closed Rita.  They should reopen it when a new batch of missionaries comes in the first week of November.  I think we're only getting 2 more sisters then, so there still will be a trio.  The Ebeye sisters will both probably stay, and the Long Island sisters will stay, so I'll most likely go to Delap or Rita if I get transferred out of Laura.  I like how pretty Laura is and I like all the good food out here, but I think I'm ready for a change and a new ward.  If Sister Samuel trains, then I'll be transferring.

I made a tasty dinner one night.  It was just pork chops fried in onions and garlic, and then I added a can of black beans, half a can of diced tomatoes, and a few handfuls of chopped up cabbage (similar to bok choy, but more wrinkly and's probably just yellow because it's old.  Sad.).  It was really pretty good.  I've been using the steak rub the siblings sent me on everything!  I usually add too much though, so everything is a bit peppery (which I never have a problem with).

I really don't think there's anything else to tell from this week, which I feel bad about.  I wish I had better stories! 

Oh, one day we were at a less active's house and she asked us to wait while she walked to a mon wia (a little shop) to get something.  We ended up walking around her farm.  It was huge!  I had only seen part of it before, but her piece of land just kept going and went all the way to the ocean. We walked down a dirt road to the ocean, and there wasn't really a beach there, so the land just kind of ended.  The waves were really strong and it looked deep.  It was pretty cool.  There were papayas, a few different types of bananas, cucumber, tomatoes, eggplant, and some other plants.  I'll try to upload some photos from Sister Samuel's card.  My camera died a couple of weeks ago.

Ellen and cucumber plants

Hopefully I'll have some better stories this next week.  I miss you all and hope you're all doing well.  Love you, 

Sister Ellen Butler

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