Pizza For Thanksgiving

Hola, familia, amigos, y todos…

So I have a little more time than I usually do. Not much. But a little. I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving (more on how my Día de Acción de Gracias was in a moment :)), by the way. (I can´t believe I didn´t say anything about that last week.)
  • So, Día de Acción de Gracias. (That´s what they call Thanksgiving Day in Spanish.) They actually don´t celebrate it here, which I expected, but our pensionista family was awesome, and we had a little Peruvian version of Thanksgiving dinner that night. 🙂 They ordered pizza, and also pollo a la brasa (it´s a bit like rotisserie chicken, more or less), and we also had bread, ice cream, and although it was way different than what I´m used to for Thanksgiving, I loved it. It was so nice of our pensionista family to go all out, and we also all made sure that day to say “Gracias” to each other many, many, many times. 🙂
  • Wednesday was the Day of the Dogs. I´m not saying they celebrate some weird dog-related holiday here or anything…we just had some really awkward/amusing experiences that day with dogs. First off, while we were dropping off our laundry at the house of the hermana in the ward that takes care of it…one of her little dogs was barking from the room. All of a sudden, a few seconds after he came to the edge of the roof, he fell off. I kid you not. We weren´t entirely sure whether to laugh or feel really, really bad, but thankfully the dog had fallen in a pile of dirt, and after whimpering very pitifully for a minute or so, we´re pretty sure he was fine. Later that day, we found ourselves being followed (yet again) by that one dog that tried to get romantic with my leg, Fido. He follows us around whenever we come in contact with him. It´s kind of crazy. He likes to pick fights with other dogs (he has a few wounds to prove it…sigh), and also, he was apparently feeling very…amorous…on Wednesday. Since this is a family email, and since I´m a missionary, and because I just don´t want to think about it any more, I´ll leave you all with these facts: At one point, he was with 2 other dogs. They were all male. They were…yeah. And there are some things you just can´t unsee. Ugh. I love dogs, but sometimes…ugh. Just no. Moving on…
  • We had interviews this week with Presidente Fernandez, and they actually went pretty well. As I recounted in my family letter a bit ago, Presidente can be very intimidating…but at the same time, incredibly loving, full of the Spirit, and you can tell he really, really cares about us missionaries. With Elder Serrano and I, he was a bit blunt…he told us that with our low numbers of people with baptismal dates, we´re not serving as missionaries, and also that we´re not working with the Spirit. Still, the great thing about Presidente Fernandez is that when he says these things, he says them with the Spirit, and he says them with love…and thus although they sound really blunt here, in the interview they made perfect sense. We´re working really hard to improve as missionaries this week, especially from what we learned from Presidente in our interview. It was a really nice experience, and I´m very grateful for it.
  • Small side note: On Sunday, the opening hymn was “Lo, The Mighty God Appearing,” which I don´t believe is very common in English congregations. It´s pretty cool. I like it. Anyways, for some reason, I felt a bit like a Tabernacle organist while playing it. (Even though I was playing on a Casio keyboard. :)) Which of course was awesome, because I dream of playing the Tabernacle organ (or the Conference Center one, I´m not too picky… :)) someday. 🙂
  • So, a bit of business…Ariel, I mentioned this in my email to you, and I believe in a previous email to you a month or two ago…I would really, really, really love to have the EVMCO Christmas CD, which should be out by now. It´s the CD I´m on…remember when I had jury duty, and then right after I had to go to a recording session with the choir I was in? Yeah, that´s the CD that we were recording. Brother and Sister Thomas (in our ward) should know much more about it, and like I said to Ariel, you can also check the website, But yes. If you could all check on that and let me know ASAP, and possibly send it soon…I would be very happy.

To quickly close, a short little experience we had last night. We were tracting, and came in contact with a woman named Joanna. She told us at her window that she already had a pamphlet from us…which made us a bit confused. She brought it and explained that her husband had been talking to missionaries just a half-hour before, which confused us even more. We then realized it was a pamphlet from the elders in the area next to us…her husband had been coming home from work or something, and the elders there had contacted him. Anyways, she was really terrific, we have a return appointment with her and her husband, and they just got married, which makes us very happy, because there´s so many people in Peru that are living together without being married, and it drives us crazy (obviously they can´t get baptized until they get married, or live in separate houses). Elder Serrano had to call the elders from that area last night to get their key indicator numbers, and they told us that they had talked to a really great person that lives in our area…and it, of course, was Joanna´s husband. So, so crazy how it worked out…but amazing. I know that we were both definitely guided by the Spirit in that.

So, once again, my companion awaits, and I must bid adieu. I love you all so much, and I hope you´re all doing great. You´re all in my prayers, my thoughts, my heart…everything, and I´m so grateful for all of you. Whenever any of you get the chance to email or write, I always love hearing how things are going. Wherever you are…I love you.
Con mucho amor,
Elder Randall
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