September 4, 2015 (HBD Elder Van Slooten)
Things are going well! I'm not too stressed and I've been working well here! also I'm in a threesome haha! the one on the left is Elder Brewer (hes' the one that's training me to be the secretary lol) He's from around Sacramento and is suuuper smart and suuuper good at his job as secretary.. part of the reason I'm so nervous, he used to program iphones and androids before his mish... idk what that means but basically he's really smart. He's also 25 and I'm only 18... oh wait 19 haha!) and the one on the right is Elder Ramirez. He's the apartment specialist for the mish! He's from New Zealand but he was born in the Philippines and moved to NZ when he was 11-ish so he's fluent still.
Basically what I do is a lot of typing and stuff. My job is to process all incoming and pauwi (outgoing) missionaries, process their info into the computer, correspond with their families, bishops, stake presidents, etc. and arrange for all of their flights (if I mess up people either won't come into or leave the mission... haha ) I have access to pretty much everything in the mission. It's pretty crazy but I'm adjusting okay.
It sounds like you guys are doing really well! I got your package btw!!! It was so cool!! The belt was really big so I had to poke a new hole in it so it would fit me but I really like the ties. I immediately wore them when I got them haha!
I love you guys!!
September 11, 2015
My week was pretty solid, super hard.. but solid! Everyday is so stressful haha! Like the other day I got an email that a new couple was coming into the mission and President Revillo said "Elder Van just make a draft of their schedule for the first week. Arrange for travel to pick them up at the airport and set appointments with the Philippines Area Office and Buruea of Immigration for fingerprinting and visa processing. We'll discuss your draft tomorrow." and I was like uhhh I literally have no idea what any of that is haha! Just kidding, I know what to do but it's super hard because i have to train myself! The office secreatary before me is already home! haha I trust myself though. I'm learning so much and I truly don't believe I could be doing this without Heavenly Father's help. Sometimes I'll be doing a random task and I'll think, "How in the world do I do this again"? and I'll just randomly happen to find out exactly where to go and what to do. I'm sooo thankful for the Holy Ghost haha! I would be dead by now without him. Driving in the Philippines is.. very..scary.. haha! Its pretty hard but a fun challenge. I think its making me a more aggressive driver which could be bad for the real roads but good for Tijuana border crossing. (never use your blinker if you want to change lanes when its bumper to bumper. don't even turn your wheels until you're ready to turn. then you pounce at the perfect moment - catch them off guard - and squeeze in in front of them. random EDSA driving tip haha)
My new companion is Elder Ramirez and he's a Filipino from New Zealand. Not gonna lie, at first he kind of bugged me. We got along fine but he was just a different kind of guy. I'm adjusting to him so well and I kept praying that I would be able to understand him and be patient with him. Man my prayer was answered! We're so close now and we get along perfectly. He feels like another friend from back home. I'm super glad I was able to adjust to him
this is just a random picture of me and my old kabahays (companion/housemates)but I wanted to send it because I got your package and the shoes are perfect!! I seriously love those shoes so much ahaha! and I got your other package with beans and tortillas. I am very excited about that. The belt was super cool! It was just really big so I had to poke a new hole in it. I think I'm losing weight? The other day I saw a lady from my first ward and she said, "ay elder! ang laki ng pinayat mo!" (Oh Elder, you're losing weight")haha I can't tell though.
I hope you guys are doing well! I pray for you guys every night! I love you!!!