August, 2010 browsing by month


Elder Walke’s Last Letter

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

¡Hola familia!

Well, today is the big day, my last letter from Ecuador. My “death” is imminent. I wonder what its like on the other side of the veil. I hope they send me to paradise and not spirit prison. Ok, to get things rolling I will fill out this quiz thing you guys made for me about what I’ve missed in the States the last couple years. Ok let’s see how I do.

“What you missed during your best two years” quiz

1.  What is the swine flu?
This one is easy. It’s the nasty flu bug that everyone thought was going to destroy the world. Well, I don’t know if the people there said that, but everyone here thought the sky was falling when that was going down.

2.  Is Tiger Woods still married?
I honestly have no idea. I assume that he’s not or this wouldn’t be on the test.

3.  How does one tweet?
Like this “tweet tweet, tweet, tweet” I’m sorry I don’t think I understand this one. Does it have something to do with that weird new instant messenger type thing that came out about the time I left?

4.  What’s a “snuggie”?

A.  Dad’s new pet name for mom
B.  What Andrea says when she wants to snuggle
C.  Blanket with sleeves
D.  Heated socks used for skiing

I’m guessing “C” because I remember that Tasha was talking about one of those in her mission emails a few months ago but I’ve never seen one before.

5 What is the Deep Water Horizon?

A.  The new Mission to Mars program
B.  The name of a water taxi in The Woodlands
C.  The name of the a deepest underwater cave ever discovered
D.  An oil well that ruptured in the Gulf, causing the largest environmental disaster in US history

“D” — I think. There was some mention of that here; I don’t know much about it though. If it’s A, B, or C then I’m sorry, I have no idea what it is.

6.  What is an iPad?

A.  A high tech pot holder
B.  A personalized feminine product
C.  A new launch pad for the space shuttle
D.  A slate computer made by Apple

The only one that seems plausible is “D”, although this is the first time that I have heard of such a thing. What does it do, and, can I have one?

7.  Whose 2010 wedding was billed as “the wedding of the century” in the US?

A.  Jim and Pam (from The Office)
B.  Chelsea Clinton
C.  Claire from Heroes
D.  Solon McGee

Ok, I don’t think it’s “D” because I can’t see why my cousin’s wedding would make the news. He’s cool and all, but he’s not famous. If is “C” then I’m sad, Claire is a babe. “A” can’t be the answer because that’s a TV show so it wasn’t a real wedding. Hey…wait! They got married on the show? That’s crazy. Ok, so that just leaves “B” — yep, I’m guessing “B”. I’m not sure why that would be “the wedding of the century”. I did hear it mentioned that they spent a ton on the wedding though.

8.  The actor playing this major character has announced he will be leaving The Office after this season.  Who is it?

A.  Michael Scott
B.  Dwight Schrute
C.  Jim Halpert
D.  Tobby Flenderson

It better be “D” because if it’s A, B, or C then I have lost my purpose for living.

9.  What is mom’s favorite game on the iPhone?

The iPhone has games? And mom plays them? Wow, must be a great game. But I have no idea what it is. Not a clue.

10.  What is a “swagger wagon”?

I don’t know a drunken wagon? But I’m pretty sure wagons went out of style a long time ago.

Ok, that’s the quiz. How did I do? That was definitely interesting. I learned a few things about the outside world that I didn’t know before because of it.

So, on to my letter part. First off, Tomas got baptized! So that was good. It was very interesting because the font is broken and still had the water in it that we baptized Manuel in a month ago. So we had to drain it manually. And of course there were no buckets to be found in the church, so we had to use small plastic garbage cans to do it. It took a long time, and it was painful, and hot. By the time we finished I was soaking wet; whether it was font water or sweat, I’m not sure. And I was dead tired too. The funny part was, when we got it down to about 5 inches of water, this guy from the stake showed up with a water pump. Apparently the stake was aware of the problem and had finally decided to do something–right after it didn’t matter at all. Seriously, how ironic is it that the font had been broken all month and the guy shows up to drain it just as we are finishing the job ourselves. Of course the guy made us haul the darn pump in to drain the little bit of water that was left. Luckily the pump only weighed about as much as a small car. Seriously, I have no idea how something so small could be so heavy. It was only a little bigger than a basket ball, but I could barley pick it up. I think it was full of lead or something. It must have weighed a solid 100 pounds. My companion tried to lift it but did it wrong and instantly hurt his back; so I got the privilege of hauling the thing the whole way, and I was already exhausted from draining the font as it was. I’m not sure how I managed to get the thing in, but I did, and we managed to pull the baptism off without any serious problems after that.

On a sadder note, I will not be able to see Elida and Jose get baptized before I leave. My hopes of seeing a family get baptized together on my mission are now over. Elida will be getting baptized but Jose can’t. This weekend a dog bit their 6 year old son and so one of them had to stay home from church with the kid and Jose said he would do it because he doesn’t want to get baptized anyway.

So that’s life. At least I should be able to have one last baptism the Saturday before I leave. We will see how things work out. Well, I’m going to wrap this up now. I just want to finish by saying, “thanks” to all of you:  family, friends, and random strangers, who have been following along these last couple of years as I have been “a wanderer in a foreign land”. There have been a lot of ups and downs but I can honestly say that I have had a good time. I have learned a lot and will always be grateful for the experiences I have had and the people I have met. I love this Church and I know it’s true. I know that we have a prophet of God who guides us, and that the Bible and the Book of Mormon really are the word of God and contain the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. God be with you till we meet again guys! See you on the other side. I love you guys!

Hasta Ver,
Elder Walke