Sunday, November 29, 2009

Hola Familia y Amigos

Each week when I start to think about what we should include in the blog I check the memory card in our camera to see what we have done. Today when I checked the camera I found the card was almost as blank as my mind and I realized that we did not take many pictures but I know that we did a lot this week. We made three trips to Lima, experienced our first earthquake (okay it was a tremor) in Quilmana, had a multi-zone conference in Chincha, gave leaderships training in Mala and Imperial, interviews with the President, had a service project, and a lot of family visits. But not many pictures.

We have had some milestone experiences lately which we are trying not to be too proud of as we know that we do nothing here without the help of our Heavenly Father. One such experience is that Debbie gave her first discorso, talk, in Espanol at a baptism. She was very grateful that they gave her the courtesy of a days notice so she could prepare. Often they don’t announce your participation until you are sitting in the meeting. (planning in advance is not a common practice) She was stressed but amazing.

We also made Friends with one of our vecinos (neighbours). A family that lives around the corner from us speaks a little English and we have been wanting to stop and visit with them other than the usual hola, como esta? So Debbie was on her way to meet Cesar, our part time chauffer, and bumped into them and Debbie invited us over for a visit on Saturday evening. Saturday she baked chocolate chip cookie squares with supplies that Hermana Cleverly, from the Lima Central Mission Office, gave us and we went and visited. We had an awesome time and they have invited us to come every Saturday evening and said that we can alternate languages each week. Funny what happens when we open our mouths and speak, what ever language we speak.

Sister Cleverly is hooked up with all sorts of north American goods that are impossible to obtain here in Peru let a lone in Canete. Three weeks ago she gave us a block of cheddar cheese, real cheddar cheese, which we have been rationing out to ourselves. We are ever so grateful for her thoughtfulness and charity in sharing with us. The Cheverly’s and other missionaries in Lima invited us to a Thanksgiving dinner last Monday evening at the Area Offices. We had many reservations about making the trip, or at least I did, for Debbie not so much. We had a remarkable dinner and met awesome people.

Wednesday night we were in Quilmana in a branch “misional,” which is a gathering like a large family home evening for members and friends. We were having a brief message from the branch president when all of sudden things started to shudder and there was a sound like a train rolling by, there are no trains here. People jumped up and started make their way to the exit as they all remember the earthquake two years ago when so many people died. Then it stopped shaking, people started breathing, and we kept meeting. This was a milestone we hope not to pass to close to again.

Yesterday, Saturday, we had a few spare minutes because an appointment fell through, imagine that, so I decided I would get my hair cut. It is my second hair cut since arriving in Peru, the first one was a scary but satisfactory experience, so I had a certain amount of bravado. Shame on those of you that are thinking, Doug what is the big concern you don’t have that much hair to worry about. Hair cuts are like a good/excellent pizza, once you find a place you trust and like you don’t like risking trying some thing else.

Not speaking the language well has certain limitations and especially in a situation as important as a haircut. The stylist, if that is not too insulting for someone that really is one, realized that we were not communicating very well handed me a magazine and suggested that I find a picture and point to it. Not that it would matter in the end because to have a result like the picture would require a modicum of talent and skill.

The only apparent requirement here to become a hairstylist is that you must have a hair clippers, dull scissors, a tank top, and a Dunlop (a bare belly that dunlops over your low rider jeans). Because this person clearly has none of the other things that one would consider prerequisite to hanging out a business shingle.

I was going to take a picture of myself and insert it here but someone here says I don’t have enough hair for it to show up in the picture. True love.

Here is a glimpse of what pictures we do have this week.

The bonita group of Hermanitas are the Joveneses (Young Women) from the Canete Branch at the Lima Peru Temple. We were on a youth temple trip a last week. We had to rent two vans, since no one owns a car, with drivers for the trip. A couple of the youth had never been to a city before.

These are the young men from the branch. All things considered these are about the best behaved youth I have ever had the privelledge of having a temple trip with. The day was fraught with disaster and was crowned with one of the vans decided not to come back for us and his company just said too bad. We loaded all but two of the youth and one leader in the van that did come and the seven of us that were left over had to find our own way home. We managed to make it a fun experience for those of us that were stranded by taking them to a shopping mall. They had never imagined anything so modern or spectacular, and for some they had their first restaurant pizza.

This was at the multi-zone conference in Chincha. We always have fun at the conferences as our missionaries lie to the other missionaries about how cool we are and the funny part is that they believe it.

Although this looks like an accident it is not. The moto's lift on to two wheels with one hand for servicing or cleaning. In this case we are cleaning Hermano Pedro's and Hermano Cesar's motos as a service project. After we finished Hermana Carmen fed us and sent us back to work.

Perspective: The bamboo leantoo with the blue tarp roof is home for a family of 4 and yellow structure behind is for another family of 4. We love the people that live here.

Every good week ends with somebody getting baptized and Elder Zea and Elder Walker are here with Hermana Vaneesa and her daughter. Luis, also in white is a member of the branch and was preforming the baptism.

Thanks for tuning in to our ongoing adventure and the support that we receive from so many. We really appreciate your comments and notes about the blog, we are finding that it is helping us reconnect with lots of old friends.

Haste luego from,

Los Gringos en Canete


  1. Excellent entry - what a week eh? And look at you Debbie, giving a talk en español! Very impressive!
    Had a good laugh about your haircut, Doug...and the lack of skill of your "stylist".
    Keep up the good work, I'm enjoying your blog.

    Cheryl Carse

  2. Sounds like the two of you are having wonderful experiences! The temple trip with the youth would have been an amazing experience! How did you get the remaining home? Christmas in Peru will be a memorable experience as well! !Que temgan una buena semana!

  3. I will write in spanish cause you have to practice!! ;o)

    Feliz aniversario!! que la pasen muy bien, les deseamos con todo cariño,

    Sus vecinos favoritos!! hahaha

    Have fun!! see you at saturday!!

  4. ohh and I'm Paola Adriana, just in case you are wondering who the heck is Adriana!! hahaha
    c ya!! ;o)