La Gringita, zombie apocalypse?; I’ll be fine

Mother,

You mean to say that you didn’t send licorice in my package? My spoiled Utahn is coming out. And yes, I did receive Caroline’s package—last week. It was a pleasant surprise, and I appreciate the journal very much. I like to write when I have the time, and I’m already halfway through my first journal.

And goodness. I miss Aurora and her sassy intelligence. And Sam. I miss Sam and his awkward, toothy grin.

This week was up there on the, ‘Ah! I’m not sure what I’m doing!’ weeks. But it was also up there on the, ‘I’ll be fine.’ weeks. We’re starting a new month, and there’s always this pressure bubble the first couple weeks of the month. It’s because if we don’t have progressing investigators, we need to find investigators to progress. Families are highly preferred.

So all this week was this scramble to find families that are actually going to progress, and I think we found a few good candidates. Pray for them, please.

But we also had a baptism of a little girl in the ward—she’s the daughter of a less active family, and she’s amazing. Begona, she’s called, and she has a horde of siblings, and they all clatter down the street screaming, ‘Las Hermanitas!’ when they see us coming. Well, either that or, ‘La Gringita!’

This week started what they call The Carnival. It’s terrible. For reasons that no one’s been able to logically explain to me, The Carnival consists of two months where, every Sunday, people roam the city throwing water balloons and soaking with buckets of water and any other assortment of weaponry and water. I don’t know why, but it’s like all of Iquitos declared a water fight, but strictly on weekends. And you bet the missionaries get targeted out here. We stick out like a sore thumb. Yesterday was the first day, and was ‘calm.’ Relatively speaking. I hear it gets worse and worse as the weeks go by, and that the last couple Sundays of March, we can’t leave our apartment. Because the teenagers and punks of the land stop using water and start using paint or food coloring or other. . .not-water things.

Story time. Yesterday we entered the house of a new investigator. It was pretty run down, but this is relatively normal. I don’t know what to call it in English. It’s a house, but several families rent out of it. There’s one matted, decaying mattress for every renter. Always pretty low on sanitary levels. But we entered and I plopped down in a rocking chair next to a ‘wall’ that consisted of a well-stained sheet, and thought nothing more of it. We started teaching, and partway through the lesson, the most inhuman sounds started up from behind the curtain, and I swear I’ve never physically felt my blood chill before, but it chilled.

The shock and terror must’ve showed on my face, because our investigator, Karin, smiled and said, ‘Ah. The Abuelita lives there. She’s got 108 years.’

And then it was okay, because any woman that survives 108 years in Peru, Iquitos has my respect.

So it’s okay, and we continue to teach, and everything’s going great. But then the sounds start up louder, and a hand is batting at the curtain and every zombie movie that I’ve ever seen is flashing through my mind, and this is it.

And then The Abuelita emerges from the curtain for just enough time to launch a watery, snotty sneeze all over the right side of my body.

So. Yeah. That’s the story of how I got sneezed on by a 108 year old woman in Peru.  I bet none of you guys can say that.

But, hey, I miss you all, and I don’t have any more time, and I hope all is well, and I’m actually quite jealous of all your food and cleaning and happiness.

Until next week,

Hermana Compton

P.S. My spelling is both atrocious in Spanish and English, I’ll have you all know. 

 
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