How did it go with the long congress?
They rescheduled the long congress. Now it is the last week of May.
We have a District conference planned here for all the members, but now we
don't know if we will have it. That's because we can´t have church
activities during Congress. At the Congress, the leaders sing in old Kuna and then
someone translates it. After that, they discuss community stuff and
give people permission to leave. We don´t need permission because we
aren´t Kunas. It is a little strange.
How was your zone conference?
It was good. There were only 14 of us. The 12 zone members and the 2
assistants. So we left our island at 5:30 in the morning to get to
port and then we waited 2 or 3 hours for the assistants to get there
so we could leave. We took a boat out to the Zone Leader's area. We picked up
all the elders from my district on the way. It was a 5 hour boat
trip. Elder Meine got sea sick. I did not. We stayed from about 1 pm yesterday and we
left at 7 am today. The return trip only took about 3 hours. We had
a better boat this time.
What have you learned about the Kuna people
I can cook some food, but I can´t cook it at home because it would be
really expensive. They use vegetables that we don´t have at home.
Men mostly just work. The women sew mola.
The fun adventure was probably Zone Conference. We even took a
picture of all the people that will die out here with me. (missionaries
that will all be going home at the same time. They call it dying when
they go home.) oh and speaking of. I didn´t get my camera back. The bishop
said that the camera wasn´t in the car when he got home. He had given other people rides.
I thought my camera would get wet out here on the island, so I didn´t bring my old memory
card. I bought a new one.
Zone Conference was fun. My district is Elders Taylor, Wrigley, Green, Sagers,
McGraw, and me. We are the 3 close islands.
The other district is Elders Mann, Senden, Gibby, Hoeft and Sisters
Bullough and McGowan. They are the far islands. if we ever come out
to blas, we will probably go out to Playon or Ustupu so dad doesn't have to ride in a boat. They
have airports. Or we come out in boats... and go to any of them.
How is Carti different from Panama?
Well, I live on an island. Also, they only have canned food and
stuff, but it is all a lot cheaper. In the city, I walk by ferrari
dealerships and lamborghinis, but here, people want to sell me the
clothes off their back so that they can buy food for their families.
It is hard to talk sometimes because people see us and start pulling
out everything they make (traditional mola, ties, the mola clothes
that they wear) just trying to sell it to us. And my comp doesn´t have
any money left because we buy from them and he has been here a while. We have to
get our water from the well. We are just waiting for rain to fill up the well. It rained
for 5 hours last night. It pretty much flooded my island, but everything is ok
because everyone has sand floors
What do you like best about the island?
I am doing good, but I am just tired from the trip. I have met pretty much
everyone and they are all really really nice. It is nice On Tupile, but I haven´t spent much
time on any of other islands. Their peoples' names here are weird to me. My friends' names
are Zobe, Lilia, and Elio. Also, we call lots of people Profe because they are the school teachers. Now they call me Flacco. That just means skinny. Island life is nice. I am getting tan.
It does get cold at night. it is the wind. We have the coldest house in Blas. Elder McGraw is
pretty fluent in kuna. He has been here about half of his mission. The Kuna people are tiny.
Someone described it as Europeans are normal sized. White people are like pulling the top middle button on a picture in powerpoint to make them long and skinny. Guatemalans are like pulling
that same dot down so that they are short and fat. the Kunas are like dragging a corner
button down into the picture so that it goes tiny all together. That is about right.
As far as food: We are normally given mangos. There are tons of them. We have banana trees around. When they come off, they are green and used as plantain. I haven´t had a banana out here. They feed us just dulemasi. It is weird soup. And I have eaten lobster 2 or 3 times in the last week. Here, we bought 2 lobsters for $6. It is funny because they are so poor and eat lobster.
On Sundays do people come from other islands to church?
We try to get that to happen, but it is hard. The church is out over the water on stilts. It is for lack of space. The island is small. We have a dock on the other side of the island for boats to arrive.