Monday, January 20, 2014

Go Broncos!

Hola Todos!                                                                            January 20, 2014

Stephen with a Bolivian Family in Budge, Argentina

GO BRONCOS!  I´m super frustrated and happy about the Broncos. I always joked that this would happen when I left, but I never actually thought it would! So yes, they will win, because it’s just my curse. But if anybody erases that recording on our  home DVR, it will be a dark day in the Chipman Home! I guess it could be resolved by some homemade cinnamon rolls. (If you want to make those anyway when I get back, that’s ok too!) Gracias!

First off, you would never guess what I found in a little shop here in San Francisco, a Duck Pin! I sent you a picture of it! It’s great. There’s a little duck holding an Argentinean Flag! Que Bueno!

Wow, its been an interesting week! I was reassigned last week to a place called San Francisco, just outside of the city of Florencio Valera. It is practically the opposite of Budge. Very few buildings are over 2 stories, there is a bunch of farmland, and we have bikes! The area is calm and peaceful. There are a lot of farm lands and things like that so it’s nice.  It is so much more peaceful here. I can wear a backpack and a watch without worrying about being robbed! So that is nice. Plus it’s really actually pretty--especially in the late afternoon on a bike going through the fields. Life is good.

My companion is Elder Yachi from Peru, but I think he said that his dad is Japanese. We serve in a small branch and share a chapel with another ward. He is a hard worker and we are getting along fine. I´m not sure how hard he worked before I came because we practically don’t have any investigators and most of our week was spent finding some. We were able to find someone and set a baptismal date! I think the people here are a little lazy.  A lot of the members are inactive solely because they are tired in the morning. So I´m a little worried about baptizing anyone, but I guess I can only do so much.

Something that I´ve learned so far is the importance of commandments. I see so many people who are living under their potential for happiness because they are too lazy. I can see that we can literally replace the word “commandment”  with “blessing”  because every commandment has a partner blessing. We just have to wait long enough to see it! 

Our pension is actually really nice but it is outside of our area. We live across the hall from other Elders of a different ward, and have to commute to our area every day. Luckily, it isn’t too far. This week though we didn´t have any water for about 3 days, and no, I wasn’t able to shower or shave. Luckily I can’t grow much of a beard. Luckily we woke up this morning and there was water in the faucet, so we all took long showers this morning!

The bikes are really fun and nice, but really junky. We usually have to put the chain back about 3 times a day. We were blessed though and got new bikes! They only have one speed and we brake by pedaling backwards, but they were really shiny. We soon found out though that one of them had a hole in the back tire. So I was on an old bike again, and my comp was on the new one. We started our day yesterday and all was good. But after about a block, the chain fell off the new bike. So my comp stopped, fixed it up, and we started again. About a block later, the chain fell off again. And it was like this for about 10 blocks. Finally we decided to walk to a members house who could help us fix it. After we worked for the day, we picked up the bike again and headed home. All was well until about 5 blocks and the same thing happened. So we play on taking the new bikes into the shop after about 2 days. But after that, all should be well.

It been an interesting week. I learned a lot about my self and how I need to change—which is hard.  I was discouraged some and I spent a lot of time praying.  Then yesterday, I remembered something that Megan taught me. She said that missionaries shouldn’t focus on being just good missionaries, but we need to love the people, and everything will fall into place. Lately, I´ve been working really hard on being a super good missionary, which in truth, usually results in feelings of discouragement, unnecessary pressure, and homesickness. So I think I´m going to try and focus less on me, and more on the people. Overall, I am tired, but happy.

There is a lot going on, its true, but I can’t put it in a single letter. Sorry!  But things are good overall and I’m really happy in this new area. I think I go for a roller coaster every time I have changes, but I am adjusting and things are getting better than ever.  I bought a bunch of food! So that makes me very happy, and I actually bought fruit, because I have been eating straight carbs for the past week.  That way I won´t get scurvy! (Megan knew an Elder in NYC that got scurvy because he refused to eat any fruits and vegetables!)

It is great to hear how well Ben Burgoyne is doing with his basketball! That´s awesome that he´s starting Varsity already! I can´t wait to play with him when I get back (and get back into shape).

The Lord has blessed us a lot in the work and all is going well! I love you all and hope you are all great!

You´re the best!

Love, Elder Chipman

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