Monday, June 21, 2010

5-29-10 First Real Letter From the MTC

Date: May 29, 2010
Area: Provo MTC
Companion: Elder Ludlow

Dear family of mine,

Tudo bem aqui. Days drag on forever here, you are always busy. We sometimes study for 4 hours straight, eat a meal, then keep studying. I never even did that when I was in school, not even close. When we think back to something we did in the morning that morning, it seems like days ago. I'm Not even exaggerating, It is really strange. It's not that bad here. It is pretty much what I expected, a little bit
of exercise, just enough time to stuff ourselves for every single meal,
and a ton of studying and church meetings. The buildings are often
really hot so it is miserable in a suit during meetings. I sweat here
more in meetings than i do in gym in the morning. Can't wait for Brazil

My companion is Elder Brad Ludlow from Riverton, Utah. He is very nice and humble. He is always willing to work and no one complains in our whole district. He is the first missionary from his family. My district is really cool. 14 missionaries, all from the U.S., about half from UT. We just played an intense game of soccer and my district dominated. There hasn't been a set schedule yet, usually we have had gym in the morning and I run and play basketball. But today it was a nice afternoon gym time so we went to the field to play futbol! There are more people here then there were at BYU Hawaii by a couple hundred, and the cafeteria is almost exactly the same. Even some girl who I always saw in the cafeteria at BYUH I now always see in the one here! The food is better though, in my opinion, and to this point most people are happy with it. I could definitely see why people gain weight here because it is all full of fat and sugar, and everyone eats till they are full every meal.

We haven't spent too long on the language yet, but so far I can introduce myself and do basic greeting stuff, share my testimony (although only about things in our little missionary Portuguese book nicknamed the green lizard), and say a prayer, also using phrases from the green lizard. But I can understand a lot of Portuguese, especially for just a few days here. Spanish helps with vocab, but makes it harder to get used to pronunciation.

They said as soon as our visas come we will be transferred to São Paulo. Our teacher also said he is pretty confident that our visas won't come very soon. Our teachers are Irmão [Brother] Harward who served in João Pessoa [Brazil] and got back a year ago, and Irma [Sister] Early who served in Portugal. There is only one other person in the MTC going to Recife that I know of, and she is not in our district. A few of my friends from BYU-H are here, so it's been nice to be able to catch up with them.

[Photo: Irmão Harward and Jon]  
Right now I am doing laundry and the time to email is running out! I love you guys, I guess [inside family joke]. Thanks for supporting me on my mission.

Elder Hooke

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