Monday, January 18, 2016

Week 21 Feliz Año Nuevo! January 4, 2016

Decorations for the New Year! The color for New Year's is yellow...apparently it's a lucky color
I have to say I wasn't a huge fan of Christmas in Peru but New Years in Peru was a blast! There was always all of this talk about blowing up dolls (muñecos) and the whole time I thought that meant Barbies... until I walked down a street one day and saw a man stuffing straw into a pair of jeans.... Life sized stuffed dolls!!
We found my doppelganger!
It was a little bit bizarre at first but I think I need to start this tradition in the states. Hermana Aida who is the most amazing member in the ward let us burn a muñeco at her house at 9pm... a little bit earlier.... Then we lit fireworks and drank Inca kola and it was a blast. Even more fun was spending the rest of the night on our balcony watching the partiers below get more and more drunk. Drunk people and fireworks are not a good mix.... At one point someone almost shot a firework through our window.

At midnight I swear it felt like we were in the middle of a battle zone....or a zombie apocalypse movie.  Explosions and fires everywhere! The next morning the partiers were still going at it. I thought for sure they were going to die from alcohol poisoning. New Years day was a crazy day because the Borrachos (drunks) had multiplied from the usual 15 or 20 to every single person on the streets. It was scary!! There was a lot of violence and we were on our toes the whole day. After a lesson fell through my comp and I sat on a curb in the shade to make some phone calls. Across the street a drunk on his balcony started preaching to us about God and a lot of things I couldn't make out. He kept asking us if we wanted Paneton and we nicely shouted back NO GRACIAS! He disappeared and five minutes later showed up on the street with a bag of paneton and started chasing us down. I grabbed Hermana Arce by the arm and we booked it around a corner into a whole herd of borrachos. Luckily they don't have a lot of stamina so we made it out in one piece (:
Hermana Aida let us burn a muñeco at her house! Normally you wait until midnight but missionaries do it at 9pm of course.
One of our awesome investigators Pedro completely disappeared! His phone number is no longer valid and we can't find him anywhere! It's pretty sad because he had a baptismal date and really wanted to change. He knows where the church is so maybe one of these days he will show up. Espero que si!! Our little 9 year old investigator Marcos is doing well and his dad is almost set to baptize his son. They are going through a lot of trials right now financially and also in their family but we make sure to visit them super often to keep them on track. Lately we have been checking up on a young man named Diego. Diego is 21 years old and the only member in his family. He served a mission in Paraguay for 14 months until he had to go home for personal problems. We have been visiting with him to try to help him get back out on his mission! He is going through a lot of trials right now and doesn't have the support from his family. So amazing hna Aida has really taken him under her wing to try to help him in whatever way possible. One problem is there has been some judgement towards him from some of the members. I was so proud of Hna Arce yesterday at church when she pulled certain people out of classes and burned them a little bit about being a good example and not judging others. We were even able to go with hna Aida to Diego's house and march him into the bishops office so that he could get the help he needs. It would be awesome to see Diego overcome his trials and go out and finish what he started!

Food lately..... SO MUCH RICE. Normally we cook rice with water right? Here everything is made with tons and tons of Oil... Sometimes I think they are feeding us laxatives in the form of food.... "It's so healthy because it cleans your stomach!" If I had a sole (Peruvian dollar) for every time someone told me that while I was eating... The other day we ate Maracuya plain. It looks similar to a Granadilla except NOT sweet. Still I would classify it under Loogie Fruit. I guess its passion fruit in the states. It was pure acid! The members thought my face was so funny while I was eating that they videoed me to show their friends. Broke a sweat accomplishing that fruit.

It seems like a lot of South Americans believe in sicknesses derived from temperature. For example. Nobody uses fans here because they believe that it makes you sick in your throat. So many times I have sat in this little hot stuffy Internet and heard people say "Senora please turn off the fan I am sweating" That phrase in general is a huge test of my patience.

Things are well here in Piura! Hope no one is taking the snow for granted!
Sending lots of love from the "city of eternal heat"

Hermana Ingram
Peru has a lot of interesting New Year's at midnight they walk around with suitcases to symbolize a new year full of traveling! (That's exactly what that lady is doing) The also eat 12 grapes for good luck.
Fireworks with Elder Beidleman and Elder Riquelme, who are also our zone leaders (at Hermana Aida's house)
Classic puppy picture because Hermana Aida has 9 puppies!!
GLAMOROUS! Poor Hermana Arce is also suffering from sleep deprivation...
Sunday Night is movie night! My favorite! ;) With popcorn for the neighbors (and don't worry's approved)

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