Elder Zivic's talk was very powerful, I felt very much the magnitude of the call. In our post-devotional discussion, my district talked about how we can improve together, and we made a solid action plan. We are fasting for several purposes, and Elder Vellinga gave a great prayer at the start of it. I know we will be blessed for it. I have a goal to finish the Book of Mormon and start the New Testament before I leave the MTC. I'm in Alma 34, I think I can do it :) By the way, reading the scriptures is one of my favorite things to do. I have been getting so much more of it than I had before, with all the distractions of every-day life.
Tomorrow we go contacting at the university for the second time. We went last Friday, and it was initially weird. We just decided to dive into it, and it was pretty good. The people here really love Jesus Christ, so it is easy to talk to them about it. There was one guy who was only interested in dating Hermana Hardy, but other than that it went pretty well. My favorite guy to talk to works or is studying public relations, and he LOVED that we had come from our country, are learning his language, and talking to people. He kept saying what a tranquil feeling he had talking to us, and he loved that we were coming together as children of the family of God. Also, he loves the Utah Jazz and talked to Hermana Hardy about them, and he talked to me about classic Suns players like Charles Barkley (yes Ethan, CHARLES BARKLEY) and Kevin Johnson (yes Ethan, former NBA All-Star Kevin Johnson!). When we parted he told us "God bless you forever!" in English, and we told him the same in Spanish. I placed my only Book of Mormon with a guy who already knew a bit about it, so that was cool too.
As far as my health goes, it's been quite good. About the 2nd week I was experiencing some very sad intestinal discomfort (basically everyone has) but this week I've been better! My skin loves it here--it probably hasn't looked this nice since I was 10 years old. Also, weird but awesome, my nail-biting habit is basically gone. I wasn't working on that at all, and I'm chalking it up as a blessing for my service. I played volleyball at gym time last weekend, and I actually did ok for a total noob (the Spanish word for noob is nobato) but I got a spectacular purple and green bruise on my hand from where I was serving, and I haven't played volleyball since. It is still there, but not as dark. It totally poured rain on us that last time, and that was fun.
I''m going to tell you a little about my district. Hermana Hoko is Tongan, but has been living in Salt Lake for some time now. Hermano Fernandez harasses her for being a city girl, which is totally not true, and she gives him some attitude. She is a fireball and I adore her. Hermana Seenaraine is from Guyanna, and she is a bit reserved, but when she is teaching and testifying she can bring it. Elder Vellinga is our district leader, and he and his companion are the APs. He excels at quoting movie scenes verbatim, and he is reminiscent of Ryan Lee for those of you who know him. He is a fantastic leader, his concern for us all is so genuine. Elder Bowes is his companion, and he is hilarious. I think we have similar brains. His Spanish is really great, and his scriptural and doctrinal knowledge is insane. Elder McDonald is reminiscent of Daniel Wing, for those of you who know him. He's hilarious in a quirkier, slightly more subtle way. The other day he was practicing a grammar concept in class, and he meant to tell our teacher Hermano Ramirez that he was running away from his own mother because he was scared, but he actually insulted Hermano Ramirez (and his mother) and then called him something really profane. We were dying, I couldn't breathe, I was ducked under the table. Poor Hermano Ramirez, yesterday they put me up to stealing his shoes while he was talking with someone outside the classroom, and I totally botched it, and he caught me. We were all dying again. He was like, "I'd éxpect this from Elder Bowes, or Elder Vellinga, or Elder Spencer, but not from Hermana Jennings!!! ¿Cual es su problema?" Hermana Hardy is very similar to me in a lot of ways. But like I said before, she's a bit spazzy (self-admitted) and so there is never a dull moment with her. Elder Spencer looks a lot like Dominic Monaghan, he's our hobbit. Also very quirky. He shared is 'story' with the other day and it was really touching. There were people who greatly impacted his life and now he is able to be here, serving others and impacting more lives. It's amazing how the Lord blesses us through other people. My love for everyone here grows all the time, especially Hermano Fernandez. We are still his hijos, and he'll walk by our room when it isn't his time to teach us and whisper, "You are all in my heart!" Hermana Hardy has been sick the past couple days, and everyone's love and care for her is so sweet.
Everyday I am working on humbling myself, and pushing out self-centered thoughts. It's hard, but I'm trying. This mission is not about me, it's about everyone else. I'm simply a vessel for the Holy Spirit. I love you guys so much, and pray for you. I hope things are well in the lives of every one back home.
Love, Hermana Jennings