Monday, January 13, 2014

Email Update 1/13/2014

Dear Familie,

That's cool that a new Wallaby's might be opening. Who knows, I may need a job when I get home!

It's been really cool in McCall, in every sense of the word. It's been snowing for the past few days, with some rain in the middle on Saturday. That's alright; we get a truck in McCall. We kind of need it; half of our service work is splitting and shipping firewood to people's homes.

As for how big my area is; it's ginormungous (giant enormous humongous). We cover from Council to Riggins, about a 400 mile radius. It takes us an hour and a half to get to district meeting every week, and 4 hours to get to zone meeting every month. We would leave the mission before we left the north end of our area.

One really cool thing about this last Zone Meeting, though. There is a member of the ward named Nate Hess (I already asked; his full name is Nathan, not Nathanael) who agreed to drive us down to Payette, so that we could meet up with our District Leaders and get a ride to Baker City for the meeting. He then waited for 6 hours to drive us back to McCall after the meeting. Zone Meeting started at 9:30am Pacific time, so we had to get up at 5:30 to head out at 6:30. That means that Brother Hess had to do the same thing, if not earlier. Take into account the fact that he is the only coroner and mortician in a 200 mile radius, and getting up that early takes on a whole new light. In short, Nate Hess is too awesome for his own good. To top it all off, when we were heading back into McCall (at 6:30pm), his wife calls, and invites us to dinner, where her brother is grilling steaks. Nate also has a knife and sword collection that he let me ogle over for a little while (no missionaries were harmed in the process of said ogling). Yes. Awesome family.

Aside from that, McCall is just plain fun. Elder Maynard is a lot like Elder Rodgers, who i had sincerely hoped to get paired with. They both are really great missionaries, with a true desire to share the gospel to those around them. They both have a strong taste for music, and both have been in bands that have recorded in studios. They both are really laid back, without even brushing the line of being lazy. Most of all, they love the people they come in contact with, pretty much as soon as they see them. I got to watch Elder Maynard play with a family of 4 boys, three of whom are triplets, and i have rarely seen anyone who could work so well with kids. One of the people we are working with is named Jill, and she's actually Elder Maynard's cousin. He cares so much about her, that he finally got her to commit to getting a job, which she had never had in 47 years of life. Needless to say, (but i'll say it anyways) Elder Maynard is a great companion.

As for me, things have been holding up pretty well. I'm still trying to get to know the area, and get used to the fact that i am in a new area. I've (of course) gotten used to New Plymouth, and once i do get used to an area, i get really comfortable with the people, and confident when i talk to them. However, it usually takes me several weeks before i get to that point. So, i'm just a little frazzled. Regardless of that, i'm starting to remember where things are, and who everyone is. (It's still weird having to try and keep track of 490 different names, their stories, who their family is, and the name of their dog---which is actually the easiest of the 4.) That really kind of makes me chuckle, because more and more, i feel like going into politics in one way or another when i get home. When we were challenged to read our Patriarchal Blessing every day, we were also challenged to pray for a "vision of the future," of how our life will look if we do the things that we've been commanded, and piece by piece, i keep coming back to what i can do in the world with the Lord's help. I keep getting the prompting that i am supposed to help bring good back to the world.

That feels pretentious just writing it. Oh well. It is what it is.

That just about covers it, with the side note that some guy wrapped a chain around the Bank's ATM and yanked it out of the ground with his truck. I'm not worried; he did this in full view of about 20 different people, and actually looked at Nate Hess' brother-in-law while he was doing it. He'll be caught before too long.

Love and Insanity, Elder Stuver

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