So this week has also been kind of crazy, but I think every week in the mission is probably kind of crazy.
P-day last week was fun. We played games at the stake center as a zone. Then Cambronero and I went to the Bishop’s house for dinner. I taught the nine year old daughter Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes. She was trying to teach me Spanish games and failing (on my part).
I also talked to another new missionary during the games and managed to help her feel better about speaking Spanish. She´s been stressing about it. I just told her I try not to worry about it, and say what I can. I figure most of it will come in time.
Tuesday the stake went to the Temple, and so all the missionaries went too. We had to get to Chorrera at 6, and then almost missed the bus because Cambronero had to get some stuff.
The temple, of course, was great. It’s so pretty and tiny. One of the elders gave me a compliment on my Spanish. He said that for the amount of time I have I actually speak really well. I need as many Spanish compliments as possible to keep me from feeling depressed about not being able to express myself easily. Later at the temple I was talking to a senior missionary from Montana. He had a bit of a southern drawl sound to his voice. Next thing I knew I was mimicking his accent, because that´s what I do all the time here listening to Spanish. I felt like I was going to start saying I was from Tallahasee next.
Wednesday we had our zone meeting. I had to do a practice lesson in our district with Cambronero. We did pretty well, and I got more compliments on my Spanish. We had to get back pretty quickly to Biencherrie because we have a less active family who feeds us on Wednesdays. They gave me something called choritzo and it was weird. It tastes kind of like an ice cream soup, but it has weird dried things in it. They look like corn, but don´t taste like it. Most of the time I just get a lot of chicken, rice, and some sort of bland potato salad. If we’re lucky we get tomato, or pineapple. The food is pretty good, but when I get home I probably won’t want to eat rice for at least a month.
We taught another less active family and got them to all agree to come to church. The spirit was pretty strong in our lesson. They didn´t come though because they all got sick. Cambronero was really sweet though and said that I am going to be a really good missionary.
Thursday we had to go to Immigrations for me. We got up at 3:30 am to get on a bus to Panama City by about 5. We got to Panama about 6:30. Then we had to take the city bus, which was like an American one. Most of the buses I take are called Chivas they are school buses or vans converted to public buses, and are pimped out by the owner. We got to immigrations about 7and all the other new missionaries were there too. I ended up talking to a new Missionary called Curtis. She’s in another area but was in the MTC with me. She’s having a really hard time. I ended up giving her a hug, because she really needed one.
There was something interesting. All the Americans wanted an American greeting (a hug) and with everyone else I greeted like a Panamanian (a kiss on the cheek).
While I was doing the paperwork at the counter, one of the missionary secretaries complimented my Spanish. He said that my Spanish is very light and clear. That’s something people keep saying is that my Spanish is very clear. I guess that´s my gift is speaking, because I am not understanding a lot.
We got back to Biencherri at 12, and then after lunch we went home because I had a migraine. I’ve had a little bit of a cold, and with the lack of sleep I couldn’t work. We did have a lesson that night with the Nunyes. Their son is on a mission and we’re teaching them. We found them while contacting. The wife wants to be baptized, but the husband isn’t quite ready, and she won’t do it without him. It’s awesome though that we can be a blessing for them because their son is on a mission.
Friday, we did contacting. We found two families that seem awesome. One was because I felt we should go that way, and the other already had a Book of Mormon. We had a lesson with them last night. I feel they have been prepared for us. It’s awesome.
To be honest I am really home sick. I miss all of you guys, and I miss the luxuries of home. But Cambronero was really great about it and helped me through it.
Sunday really helped me. We had two less actives who came to church. And we finally got a member who said he could help us in our lessons. It is so hard to get member help here. But I think we can do it. I also made friends with his dog too. The dogs here aren’t used to being pet, but as soon as I pet their ears they love me, it’s great.
I’m glad to hear you guys are all doing well. I can´t wait to get a package from you guys.
Please send me pictures and letters I really need them. I´m pretty homesick. I can handle it, but I really miss you guys.
I love you guys a lot, and am really looking forward to conference this weekend, and the fact that tomorrow is the start of my 3rd month on the mission.
Love you lots
E-mail Hermana Natalie Palmer directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Even a short, encouraging e-mail would be great!
If you would like to write to Hermana Palmer, here’s the mission mailing address:
Carrasquilla Entrega General 0834
Republica def Panama