Buenos dias. Harper and Blair thought that I should write on Mondays since it is a little slower around here than Sundays. Guess missionaries all over the world write on Mondays, so thats good enough for me. It's been another interesting and amazing week. First things first, I find myself having to speak for myself all the time, weird, I seem to be able to get my point across. Mondays are the day when the Facilites Management staff come and keep up the mission home. The gardeners come, the pool cleaner, and someone to clean the house. Last week Raquel and her daughter came about 1:30 to clean, today, at 9am someone new showed up, Karina! They are both really nice and I still feel super awkward about having someone else clean my dirt, but it's not really my house so I roll with it. Its super funny though cuz noone told me they were changing, and I was so confused...sort of a state of being for me here most days. So, while Karina is downstairs, I will blog (and FYI, I really like her coming early much better, so things always work out for the best)
So another funny thing about the house...all the keys to every lock on everything outside, the pool pump and heater, the gates to the yard, the natural gas tanks...all got lost somehow. We have so many keys, but none for those locks, so Hector from FM was coming to install a magnetic board in the house so Jerry can have a duplicate of the one in his office on Tuesday. We've been waiting on this board since we got here, some problem ordering it or something. So while he was here he cut off all the locks, brought new ones and gave me the keys. Well Hector, the pool guy, needed a set for himself. I had to find someone to copy keys...and success, after asking at the Radio Shack (where I successfully bought a USB port splitter and an ipad mini cover for Jerry, by myself, in spanish, on separate tickets...yeah glad to have a translating app on my phone) and going to 5 different places, I found a place to duplicate the keys, got it done and when Hector showed up this morning, the smile on his face was well worth the effort! He doesn't speak any English so we had a funny time when he tried to teach me how to turn the pool pump and heater on and off. We both laughed alot, but figured it out. So it goes with my attempt to master the Spanish language.
Two great things this week, first, we had a dinner and testimony meeting with the very first missionaries to finish their two years (we have sent one missionary home with a serious medical problem). They came with the Assistants who we know quite well. One was from the US, Wisconsin to be exact, the other is a native from Chiapas. I cooked all day, wanting to make it a great night for them. Even made homemade ice cream and peanut butter swirl bars for dessert...they were a hit. But the sweetness of the testimony meeting that followed was the best part. Both Elder Bentley and Elder Alvarez had musical talent, Elder Bentley played the piano and Elder Alvarez had an amazing voice, they both shared. Then the four missionaries, and the four Crickmores all bore testimony. When I got up to bear mine, I decided on Spanish. I've born my testimony several times already in Spanish, but this time I felt like all the words I needed where in my head and coming out as I wanted them too. I know that it was a miracle for me. I know because in ordinary conversations I still struggle to put the words together, but when the Lord needed something said, it got said correctly. It was a great evening and we will miss each missionary as they leave.
I am still spending a lot of days at the home trying to get things fixed or installed, it should change in the next couple of weeks. But we took another pday on Friday and took the twins and our Assistants and the zone leaders that have been working closely with the assistants (and live together) on finding housing for the many new missionaries that will be coming in the next few months. We went to Teotihuacan. It was an amazing experience and my legs are still sore from climbing to the top of both the Sun and Moon pyramids. You can really visualize the writings in the Book of Mormon when you visit these ancient sites. I felt the same way when we visited Chichen Itza, Tulum, and Monte Alban. What amazing people and how great that it is still standing for us to see...pics to follow
So I said that I have been on my own quite a bit. I think the twins finally feel comfortable that I won't get lost coming and going to the store, so they didn't go with me on Saturday. I made it there and back, shopped at the Wal Mart and Radio Shack, asked questions, returned a empty water jug for a refund, and didn't get lost. On Sunday we were planning on going to a 8am ward in the mission (we are going to try and visit every ward) but nature had other plans. We had the most extraordinary storm about 2am with thunder so loud and long that it shook all the windows, lightening that looked like it was in our back yard and rain blowing sideways so hard that it blew it around the seals in the windows in our stairwell, which had water running down it. Needless to say, we were awake for about two hours, the last of which I was mopping up water from tile floors that get really slippery. So we changed plans, Jerry headed to an appt about two hours away and Church there, and the twins and I got in the minivan and set out for a stake center an hour away that we had never been too. They were sure we wouldn't find it, and there was a ward closer, but we'd already been there, so Jerry gave some brief directions and we drove to Amecameca in search of the stake center, and trying to be on time. Well we did ok, until the last turn, and we couldn't find it, we had about 5 mins before sacrament meeting, the girls had given up hope, but I had prayed that morning for help as this would be my first time driving and going to church without Jerry. As we turned the corner of a street that we hoped would be the right one I looked up to see a mom and two children walking toward us. The little boy was wearing a white shirt and tie....I looked at the girls and said, "they're Mormon!" Who else is dressed like that in a small town in the middle of Mexico on a Sunday morning? So I rolled down the window and said "Perdon, sabe que la Iglesia de Jesu Christo..." I didn't get any further as she saw my name tag and broke into a big smile and proceeded to tell me I was only two blocks away, and directed us to the building. Now for the not so great part of the story. We found the Stake center, but only one side of the gate was open and I'm driving a mini van, and I'm late, and the other side has a lock on it. So I think I can make it with the mirrors pulled in, and I am doing fine until the car in front of me that wants to come out doesn't move and I have to turn. Yep, you can guess the rest, I put the first dent in the mission car. It's not too bad, over the wheel well, but I felt really bad. We did however get to sacrament meeting on time, which was also a miracle. Harper and Blair made me feel better when they said, "Mom, with the way the traffic is here, it was bound to happen sooner or later, at least you didn't hit someone else!" I can always count on them to make me feel better. So after Church we successfully navigated our way home also, made a great dinner and waited to here about Jerry's really interesting day.
Well that's long enough, the gardeners are here and I'm going to see if they know where to take recyclables (I know, I just can't make myself throw away all this plastic!) We get our first new missionaries next week...very excited and we found out that a young man from the Del Mar Stake is coming to our mission!!!! Nope not gonna tell, that's his job.