Monday, July 9, 2012

Ibarra, Ecuador

Hello!!!  My first area is a piece of the Ecuadorian countryside called Ibarra.  The same area that the guy from your work who wrote me spent some of his time.  It is beautiful here!!!!!!!!!
Saturday, we took a little 2 hour road trip through the Andes Mountains to visit a less active couple.  I was just amazed by all the sights, AND I DID NOT EVEN HAVE MY CAMERA WITH ME!!  I was really disappointed, but life goes on, I guess.  I completed my life long goal of walking on an old bridge that I could have died on!!  I am one step closer to my own TV show on the Travel Channel with Josh Gates.  I love how Ibarra has both a little city and loads of countryside in it.  It is so peaceful here.

The days here are such a blur!  I just follow my companion around and listen to people speak a different language.  I cannot remember anybody's name because they are all so weird to me, and I just feel so stupid.  People laugh at my Spanish.  Right now, I think they think it is endearing, but I am sure that will change quick and they will just want me to talk.  We walk a lot and take buses to where we need to get to.  We have a huge area to cover!!

I have never been whistled at or cat called so much in my entire life.  I thought guys here would be more respectful that the guys in Peru, but I was wrong.  I asked my companion, who is from Riverton, (so white and blonde) if it ever ends, and she said that it is not that bad... Then a few days later, she said that it was worst with me here... Apparently, two white girls walking down the street is quite the sight in this little city.  The other day, I was carrying a bunch of stuff and it got really windy, and it made my skirt blow up, and a group of guys started whistling.  It was the most embarrassing moment of my life!!!

At church on Sunday, there were 75 people, and I felt completely at home, even though it was in Spanish.  The chapel here is really nice, so much better than Grenada - sorry CeCe.  The branch president asked us to talk in church next week for 8 minutes each, I do not know eight minutes worth of Spanish though....  We will see how that goes.

My first lesson was with what my companion described as our most progressing investigator.  We sat down, Yolanda and Gaby were so sweet and welcoming.  We started singing Teach Me To Walk In The Light, and then Yolanda,s husband walked in and started yelling that he was very catholic and that he did not approve of other religions and some other stuff.  I was not sure if he was just casually telling us about himself in a loud voice, but then Hermana Umphenour started collecting her things and we left.  Her eyes started to tear up as we walked away from the house.  We are expected to have 2 baptisms a week down here, and right now, we have no close prospects.

I love Ecuador.  I love the people here.  They are so nice!!  The members are amazing to us.  They feed us lunch everyday - I really do not have to cook at all.  And they do our laundry.  Best people ever?  I think so!!

Okay, so for the downside of this experience... I cannot eat any of the food without getting sick.  Since I have been here (like 6 days)  I have had 4 meals.  I feel so weak!!  But not eating feels better than eating, so I just eat a cracker when I feel like I might pass out.... It has worked for me so far... We will see if die this coming week.  The mission nurse does not know what it might be, she thinks it is the food, but the food down here is pretty normal.  Rice, potatoes and chicken.

I am so happy here.  I love sharing the gospel even though I cannot speak Spanish very well.  I feel so inspired here!!

I love you all!!

Hermana Ellis

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