“Here, have some blankets covered in smallpox”

November 21, 2011

“Okay! I will give them to my wife and my vulnerable children.”

That is code for “Happy Thanksgiving!”

Let’s see: there was so much that happened this week I don’t even know where to begin. We are (well, were until we realized that we didn’t have his mother’s permission) teaching the 9 year old son of a recent convert (dad). He is so funny. Things he said this week: Well, first, it is really funny because he just calls me Poulson! (always with an exclamation point). I’ve told him about 500 times to call me Hermana Poulson or Sister Poulson, but he always forgets so it’s always just POULSON!

When we went to the temple tour this week (they have one every month and the mission hosts it so we can have a cool activity to invite investigators to) we were singing the opening song and he leaned back to me and said, “Poulson, why do you sing really good in Spanish but don’t speak good in Spanish?” Can’t fault him for putting it like it is. Earlier in the day, he and I were reading the Book of Mormon together and he asked me if some big, hard word (I don’t remember what it was) meant such and such (which it did). When I asked him how he knew that, he said, (in a really “cool” voice), “Context clues!” It made me laugh. I thought you would appreciate that story, Maren.

Also, we asked him to be baptized last week (back when we were still officially teaching him. Oh, I’m so sad his mom is anti-Mormon!) his dad told me that after we left, J was asking questions about baptism. J asked, “How old was Jesus when He was baptized?” and his dad said, “30” and J asked, “And how old was he when he died?” And his dad told me, “I didn’t think I should answer that one.”

Okay, now that I type it out, maybe that story was only funny to me, or maybe it was funnier in Spanish, but I laughed really hard.

Want to hear a story about how I am a terrible missionary (but the Lord blesses us despite it)? Okay, I’ll tell you. Long story short, Hna R and I were a little bit annoyed with each other one day this week and she kept making me do all of the door approaches “because it would be good for [me].” I want to spoon out my ears when people say things like that to me.

So, we go up to this door and she says, “Your turn,” and I say, “No, it’s not. I’ve done the last 3.” Then the lady answers the door and says hello and we say hello. Then I look at Hna R and she looks and me and I look at her and she looks at me and I look at her and no one says anything and the lady just stares at us. Finally, after probably 15 seconds which felt like 5 minutes the lady says, “Do you need something?” and we both continue to look at each other like “I don’t know. Do you need something? Because I don’t. I’m not talking at this door” until one of us broke (I think it was me) and we stumbled through an incredibly awkward door approach. I was waiting for the lady (about 25 and pregnant) to shoo us away when she interrupts us and invites us in. We were both SHOCKED. How could anyone let us in after that? We (meaning Hna R, mostly) taught her the first lesson. She speaks really fast and barely comprehensible Spanish and even Hna R couldn’t understand her well. She could tell that we were having a hard time understanding her so she invited us to come back when her husband, who speaks English, could be there. We gave her a Book of Mormon and left. What?!

Then, we went back and she told us that she has been reading (she’s read like a lot, and we only met her like 3 days ago) and when we talked about the Spirit, she was like, “So that’s what I’ve been feeling lately and why I am so happy since you last came.” And she was agnostic before. And her husband is great, too. He told us how he thinks infant baptism is ridiculous and how he never believes in the Trinity because the Bible made it clear that the father and son were different people. We have high hopes for them.

Also, this week we kind of taught J’s cousins and they read like crazy. We’re not sure how to go about teaching them because their parents are totally uninterested but let us teach the kids. I feel like it might not be worthwhile to teach these young kids who would have no support system if they get baptized, but they are sooo good and love the lessons and read like 2 chapters a day and have lots of questions and tell us how happy it makes them. The youngest one is 7 and she reads the most out of any of them. We are so amazed by these kids.

Also, we went to a ward party this week and it was the best thing ever. White ward parties should be as good as Latino ward parties.

Okay, I have used way too much time. I love you.

Write me! Happy Thanksgiving.

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