Sunday, October 27, 2013

Week 4 Island of Tanna Oct 24, 2013

Dear Beautiful Mother Dear,

I found out that I will only get computer access every 2 weeks.  That's why I didn't email last week. The island is great and it is very cool, the volcano is AMAZING!!! And we might go there again tonight. The people are great and everybody cares for each other. One thing I've realized is that the kids never fight.  They get along and play together so well. Sounds like New York was awesome. I wouldn't mind seeing "Wicked", I've heard it's pretty cool.  We had Zone Conference the week I last emailed you and it was fun. We went to Port Vila and went to a nice restaurant.  It was good food! (During Zone Conference).
The language is coming on pretty well. I'm starting to speak it more and more.  I taught a girl in Bislama and the lesson went pretty well. It's nice to have the spirit help me with the gift of tongues. I walk a lot.  Me and Elder Langi walked down the mountain from Saet Siwi and back up 3 times this week. (When I get back from my mission I will have the biggest legs you've ever seen.)  So me and my companion found out that we can't go to Port Resolution anymore until we work some church stuff out with the Chief of the town.  Hopefully the Lord will prepare a way for us to go back there eventually.  So we won't be able to baptize the 2 people we invited until we are able to go back there. We now have 5 baptisms that are waiting to be done. I don't know when they will be.

We just have to help some investigators first before we are able to make a baptismal date.
Things have been slow this week because most of the people in Saet Siwi have been taught.  Without Port Resolution we can't teach much.  Wednesday we weren't able to teach a single lesson. Thursday it rained like heck and we only got one lesson done and by the time we got back to our house we were soaked and we hung up our clothes inside to dry.  It was a slow week but on Saturday, it was just like Wednesday, no one that we planned on teaching was home and we weren't able to teach until Elda Langi and I decided to go to a river to buy some time before we walk back up to Saet Siwi.  While we were at the river I took some pictures(of course!) and then a family came to go swimming. The father of the family recognized that we were missionaries and asked that we teach him while the mother and kids swim. We taught him about the restoration and asked him if he would be baptized. He accepted and we were so happy. It was a good end to the week.
The place I go each other week on "P" day is called Lenakel. It's where I do my E-mails. It's on the west side of the island.  Elder Jones (my old companion from the MTC) is the designated driver and picks me and Elder Langi up and part of our district. They take us to their home every other week and we sleep there and do laundry there. We go shopping for food as well. I might do some laundry by hand when I'm in Saet Siwi  because I have 2 weeks worth of clothes to wash in the machine if I don't.  So I don't drive (it's weird not driving for over a month). Maybe when I get transferred I will drive. Sounds like halloween is going to be fun. what are you going to be? Make sure to send pics of dad to me.
Just so you know I found some salt and pepper in Port Vila. Yay! Know that I love you and thanks for your e-mails.  I'm glad you are all happy. Remember that life is good and that I'm happy.  I love you

Elda Smith Baenon

Sunset at Port Vila after Zone Conference
Teaching a bunch of kids after church
One of the villages that we teach at

The view near Port Resolution Oct 2013
Week 5 Island of Tanna October 31, 2013

Dear Friends and Family,

I found out that I will only be able to get internet access every 2 weeks, thats why I wasn't able to email you all back.  Things are going great here in Vanuatu!  I've had 3 coconuts since I've been here and it's really good.  I haven't eaten anything weird yet but I've had some interesting island meals. One I had the other day is called Laplap (loplop) It's a mixture of crushed up Talo and Manyoke (which are island crops that taste kind of like potatoes.)  The crushed Talo and Manyoke is mixed with whatever you want. I had it mixed with pork so I think it's called Pork Lapap. It's then cooked and it tastes pretty good.
Just so everybody knows, we are not allowed to wear Lava Lava's as our proselyting clothes. They used to allow it when this mission was part of the Fiji mission, but it's mostly a Fiji type thing. I haven't seen many people wear Lava lava's at all here. I might buy one that I can wear for pajamas though.  I had Zone conference last week and it was fun. We were able to eat at good restaurants and we ate at a fast food joint called "SeaView:" "Takeaway."  It had chicken and fries and milkshakes and that type of stuff. It was good to have a milkshake again.  And the fries are good but not as good as in America and they are called Chips here, not fries.
This week was a slow week because everybody we planned on teaching were never home. Saturday night we found a new investigator and taught him and he accepted to be baptized. It was a great end to the week. We have 5 baptisms that should be coming up. It will just take time to sort everything out with our investigators.  I will keep you all updated on that.  Me and my companion found out that the 2 people we asked to be baptized in Port Resolution will have to wait.  The church has to sort out some stuff before we can go back and proselyte. Things are great though, we might go back to Mt. Yasur (the volcano) again tonight. I am loving my mission. Whoever is reading this, consider serving a mission, it is so much fun. I love you all and can't wait to see what's in store for me. Take Care!

Elda Baenon

Sunrise off the beach near Port Resolution

Pigs that the sister missionaries bought and roasted

Lava at the Volcano

Smith at the Volcano...Yikes!

Tolu (an Island crop), Coconut Milk and Island Leaves that taste like Asparagus

Building a fire an act of service for a wedding Oct 2013

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