Sunday, October 26, 2014

A Week in the Life of the Santo Domingo West Assistants to the President

October 25, 2014

Dear Family,

It is so great to hear that everything is going well with all of you back home!!  I am glad that work, school, and all of the extra stuff is going so well!!

So things here as one of the Assistants are really different than I thought that they would be!  I am going to start from the very beginning, just to kind of give you guys an idea of what I mean!!

So on Monday night, I went and said goodbye to a couple of people, including Mercedes and her grand daughters!!  That was really hard, and those good byes are the hardest part about transfers, especially about transfers that are so unexpected as this one was!!  It was a good moment though, and we all had a good time!

On Tuesday morning I woke up early and finished up all of my packing, then went to the bus stop to buy my ticket.  I called the current assistants, told them what time I was going to be there, and then gave the phone to Elder Castillo.  Yupp, that is right, traveling alone to the capital with out any way of communication... yikes.  So I got to the capital at about 8:45, and just started to wait... and wait and wait and wait.  Turns out that I was waiting, and they other missionaries were looking to find me, and they didn't see me or something because they came and picked me up about two hours later!!  It was funny because you always here stories like that from back in the day, but it was a little funny that it was happening to me!!  Any way, they finally came and picked me up, and we went to the office.  On the way there, they were telling me about the weekly devotional that they do with the president, that was where we were going, that we would be there in 5 minutes, and that SURPRISE!!!  I was going to be in charge of the message to share!!  Welcome to the Office!!  Haha but so any way, I only had time to drop my stuff off at the office, and then we went to the meeting!  It was fun, and the president's wife even made chocolate chip banana bread!  We talked all about the whole mission, weekly numbers, and all of that good stuff!!  It was a really eye opening experience to get to learn just how much goes on behind the scenes in the mission!  After that we went out and grabbed some food, and then started the day!!  We were just running all over the place, buying medicine, paying bills, talking to doctors, and do all of that kind of stuff!  We went to give a sister missionary a blessing, and also called all of the sick people in the mission to check up on all of them!!  It was a little bit funny because before we left, they just tossed me the keys and told me that I was driving!!  Ok, so I did it, and it was super fun!  The truck is a Toyota Hilux, and it is white and super nice!  Then while we were in the car, Elder Polanco, the person who's spot I am taking, called someone, told me who it was, and then told me to talk to them about their problem...  On the very first day!!  

We are in charge of all of the sick people, so he was just getting me used to it or something?  It was fine though.  Then in the night we went out and taught a little bit.  We taught two you who are getting baptized next Saturday, and that was really fun.   Then we taught an older couple about the Plan of Salvation, and they were semi receptive.  The cool thing is that Elder Paulino, my companion, is related to both of the people that we visited, the first two being his cousins and the other two being his grandma and grandpa.

On Wednesday morning we gave a Conference of trainers and trainees.  We went back to San Geronimo, and it was a lot of fun.  I had to speak a little bit about finances in the mission, as well as translate a health presentation for Hermana Nuckols, who is still learning spanish.  Then, we broke up and I went with the American Trainees, and we just had a really good session.  We kind of just let them let everything out, everything that was hard and all of that stuff, and then I got to teach them about testimonies and conversion.  It was a lot of fun, and took me right back to when I was that age in the mission and just starting out!!

Thursday we gave the same conference to those who are training in the campo.  I was the one who directed the meeting, and it was a lot of fun because I got to go back to Azua.  We rode with the president and his wife, and we all just got to talk and ask questions.  It was a lot of fun.  Then in the night we asked a member to come teach with us to make better use of our time, and I went with Paulino to teach and Polanco went with the member.  It was cool, and I am hopefully getting to know the area a little bit now!!  It is a little bit tough because we don't have like a set route that we take every day, it kind of just depends on where we are! 

Friday was a really busy day, as we had another meeting with the president to help him witht he preparations for the upcoming transfers!  It was a lot of fun, and it was cool to finally see the mission home... It is huge!!  It is also really nice inside, and it was cool to see a home decorated in American style, with family pictures hung up on the walls and things like that!!  Then we spent the whole day driving, taking people to the doctor, trying to get phone situations figured out, and taking people back to their areas.  In the night, we helped a member man move into a different house.  It was a lot of work, but it was fun!!

So today is PDAY, but we are only getting to write to our families.  Other than that it will be a normal day because we have a zone activity on Monday, so we are changing the parts of PDAY other than writing to monday to be able to go. 

The office is a really fun place.  We are always busy, and this week has just flown by!  There is never a dull moment.  The schedule is a little bit funny....  Go to bed at 1:30 in the morning and then wake up at 5, but it is fun.  We eat on the run usually, but we eat well.  We have lots of responsibilities and lots of things to do always, but I just think that it is preparing me even more for the future.  It really has been a blast these last few days!!

Regular Pday is not on Saturday.  We are just going to be having the activity this monday, so we are just getting to write today. Gotta go, we are going to buy new appliances and celebrate the presidents wife's birthday!!  LOVE YOU! LOVE YOU! Well, I hope all is well back at home!!  I love you all so much, and I can't wait to hear from you!!

Elder Garrett McEwan

P.S:  I forgot to tell you this, but I also have my own smart phone out here as the assistant!  ;)

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