Welcome to the very last email of 21 year old Sister Beyer. Next time you hear from me I will obviously be older and wiser and very different. Seriously though I had so many emails today wishing me a happy birthday. I printed them all off and will read them later. But thank you so much. I love you all. And I cannot begin to tell you how much the support means to me.
So last wednesday, we had to wake up early to do our laba. We wash it by hand, it is quite the process, and I had an american, and indonesian, and an american teaching me how to laba. I'm absolutely hopeless. I think it's better if I just pay someone to do it. Seriously, I'm horrble at laba. We had a big zone activity that day, and we played ultimate frisbee (can there be a more "utah mormon" activity? the answer is no, there can not) I'm not a huge ultimate frisbee fan, and the elders were gettin a little crazy over the game, so I just went and hung out with Elder and Sister Anderson. They packed snacks. I think I chose the better option here. That night I witnessed the most horrifying thing I have yet to see in the Philippines. We go out onto our back "patio" where we cook all of our food and I just see Sister Bateman's eyes go really big and to go back inside. I asked her why and she just says go inside and get sister Minguez! Now, Sister Minguez is Filipina, so I knew this was serious business. And then I see it. The death spider. This thing was a BEAST. I kid you not, it was the size of my hand. I scream and run for cover. I grab my huge flashlight to further inspect it, and alas, I see that the situation can indeed get worse. It was an eggsack filled with millions of tiny spiders that will soon grow to be beasts as well. okay, at this point I basically just accepted defeat and booked a plane ticket home. So we start trying to figure out what we're going to do. We can't just smash it, because all the eggs will run out. But we surely cannot let it live, it is in our "kitchen" and way too close to entering our home. So thus starts a ridiculous half an hour procedure of the four of us attempting to kill the spider. I filmed the whole thing. We safely killed the spider, and all of it's future dispensations. I truly do not like spiders.
Thursday: It was just a normal day. But I love it. I really like San Carlos. And I really like Sister Bateman. It is really easy to be her companion. It just comes pretty effortlessly for us. We get along really well, and we laugh a lot. She's 20, from Idaho, and she heads home this December. Her visaya is DREAMY. I want her Visaya. It hasn't rained since I got here, which I am absolutely stoked on. But it's pretty dang hot. It's usually about 90 degrees in our room every night. I'm back to the good old ghetto aircon of strapping frozen water bottles to myself. That night Sister Minguez and Sister Tandiman came home and told us they have a special treat for us. They bust out all these tiny crabs. So I sit down with Sister Minguez and she is showing me how to eat said tiny crabs. You eat the claws, I'm thinking, okay, this is great, totally normal. Then she has me crack open the middle, take the top portion off and eat the rest. Shell and all. I just looked at this adorable tiny Filipina who was so excited to have me eat this, and I asked, wait, even the shell? And she goes, "IT'S FOOD LAGI!" Which means like, "obviously" so, Sister Minguez and I sat down for half an hour and ate tiny crabs and rice, with our hands, shells and all. I didn't even die.
Friday: We met a man who just moved here from Tacloban. He told us about his experience in Yolanda. He grabbed his two little girls (both under the age of five) and carried them both as they ran from the water to the top of a hill. This man is incredible. He just moved into the branch, and he played such a beautiful piano arrangement on Sunday. While we were teaching this week along the beach, five wild turkeys just ran through where we were sitting. One of them almots jumped on me. I didn't know turkeys existed here. I don't know why I'm eating tuna and eggs when turkey is available! I demand a sandwich! Also, as we were walking there were some little kids playing basketball, they passed me the ball, I took all my courage and prayed that it would work. I made a perfect three pointer swish! Everyone freaked out over the American who had mad game (It was pure luck). Everyone is obsessed with basketball here, and if they know you're from Utah they immediately say "Utah Jazz! Karl Malone!" So when I made my three pointer I told them all I was Karl Malone. It was a grand old time. So then as we were walking around, we both just got kind of tired, it was hot, and we got a little discouraged. So I decided that we needed a bevarage. (thank you mom) So I stop at a tindahan to get a coke. We start up conversation with this 60 something year old man. His name is Boy. We see that he has a jar of knottsberry farm jam, so we start talking about that. Then, we mention we are missionaries, and he picks up a pamphlet that he keeps on his desk from missionaries from a few months ago! He just has a restoration pamphlet! And then he says I have a question. He turns it over, and points to the picture of the book of mormon on the back and says "do you have this book? I would like to read it" I DIED. I immediately pulled my Basahon ni Mormon out of my bag and gave it to him. Sometimes, you just need a beverage for reasons unknown, and then you find wonderful prepared people. The Bacolod missionaries talked to him, but they didn't teach him. We went back and taught him later, he read well into 1st Nephi. He is so smart. And he really understands it all. This man is golden.
Saturday: We went to a part of our area kind of by the ocean, apparently the tide comes up really high every day, and it gets up to your ankles in the streets. We had some men come over trying to talk to us. We could not for the life of us figure out what they were trying to say. These shirtless men kept hunchingover and hitting their backs. Finally it all clicked. Basically, these shirtless men were trying to act out in charades that they would give us a piggy back ride. Um SIRS. No thank you. Very kind of them, but we passed. You know, shirtless men,carrying americans in skirts through the water on their backs just didn't seem like the best idea. There is this adorable little girl of a member who is terrified of me. She is three. She adores Sister Bateman, but is so scared of me. She literally runs. So I talked to her the other day as she is hiding behind her mom and I ask her if she is scared of me. She says yes. I ask her if it is because I'm tall. She says no, it's because I'm a bayot. OKAY. Let me just tell you what a bayot is. It's a gay man who is a cross dresser. There are two kindsof bayots. The kind that is oddly gorgeous and looks like Beyonce and J-Lo, and the relatively ugly kind that just walk around in girls clothing. What one do you think the child would be afraid of? Sister Bateman laughed for hours. I have no idea why the child would think that about me, but she truly truly believes it. My heavens, send help. We taught a wonderful family that night, and the mom of the family was telling us all that she needed us to do. And then she says 'you don't have mothers here! I have to be your mother!" She called us a trike so we didn't have to walk home in the dark. These people are so dang sweet.
Sunday: Such a good day. Some solid people came to church, Sister Bateman and I ran relief society. So many tender mercies. After sacrament meeting, I felt someone touch my hair, and there were ten girls gathered around me playing with my hair because it is blond and curly. This happens way more than you would think.
Monday: We went out and taught Teabing, she gave me a huge seashell for my birthday. We had District Meeting and Sister Anderson made real honest to goodness chocolate chip cookies. I was in complete bliss.
Tuesday: Yesterday was ridiculous. So many random things happened. I'll sum it up like this, I was sitting in the front of a trike, I got out, and the trike immediately fell back, and three Filipina's screamed. Aka, I'm a fat American. We walked on the beach, and I stepped in something foul and unmentionable and had to wash my shoes in a well, and then Sister Bateman told me that I was not at all Fab. I told her I'm the most fab person to ever wash yuck off of my shoes in a well. Also, not once, but twice yesterday, I got attacked by a swarm of red ants. My legs are eaten alive. And lastly, I sneezed 23 times yesterday. We literally counted. It was quite the day. I guess I'm sending off 21 right haha.
This week should be a really good week. We get on the ferry for Cebu tomorrow and I should get to see Sister Anderson tomorrow! I'[m so excited. I'm totally out of time, but I do have a scripture that I want to share that I love. 2 Corinthians 5:7. I'll expound more next week. But take it for what it's worth. I love you all so much.
Love, Sister Carlee Beyer