I cannot begin to express how happy your letters made me this week. We had kind of a dud week, but now because of your letters I am going to go out and smash this area with the gospel. You all are just doing so much it is making me so excited about everything going on and I am just so ready to go out and fill people's lives with gospel truths!
When I say that we had a dud week, I didn't mean that it was fruitless, but rather fruit-lacking because of the bad weather. There is a hurricane or tropical storm or something developing off of the coast of Florida, so we have been getting some gnarly weather down here. We only got caught out in a monsoon once or twice; other than that we have had to stay in our apartment because there would be no use in trying to find people to teach as the tropical gods try to flood us out. When it rains here, it rains.
But it's all chill, because Elder Bochenek, Elder Taylor, and Elder Me were able to spend some good quality bonding time together in the apartment. Spirits have been a little bit low, simply because we pretty much are not teaching anybody at the moment. The South is hard that way. Missionary work isn't really hard when it comes to walking and trying to find, but it can take somewhat of a spiritual toll on you when you are just wanting to share a message with someone that will change their lives for the better and pretty much every other door is some sort of pastor. But there is a reason that I am here in Marianna, whether or not I find someone to teach. I think that I just need to find peace in the gospel and my personal determination and not so much in the busy-ness of our schedule.
That is something that has been hard for all of us, especially for Elder Bochenek. Elder Bochenek is awesome; he's from Rexburg, Idaho and is the quintessential manly man. Before his mission he worked on a farm and in steel construction, and he is just legit. I'm pretty sure that for the summer when I come back from my mission that I'm going to go fight forest fires or something, because I just need to do something manly right now. So since Elder Bochenek is used to such a hard-working lifestyle, it has been hard for him that the work is slow. We all secretly fasted for a hurricane to flatten Marianna so that we could have a service mission and at least help people in some way or another. The only service that we have been able to really do so far has been to disinfect toys to be sold at a thrift store and wrap cake boards at a local bakery. I feel super manly.
Elder Taylor is super cool, too. He is from Thousand Oaks, California, so he lives really close to Los Angeles and is a USC fan. The way he speaks is so matter-of-fact; whenever something happens, you can always count on him to immediately restate the occurrence in the most simple yet funny way. We love that guy.
The Fourth of July was fun enough. It was rained out, so no fireworks, but we did go over to Bishop Sims home and have some amazing ribs with his secret barbecue sauce, which was rather enjoyable. People really like to eat down here.
No details on the visa as of yet.
Well I suppose that I have written enough for you to chew on. I will say farewell from here in the panhandle of Florida, where every creature wants to bite, sting, or, by some other method, insert venom into your body.
Elder Jon Hendrik Vawdrey