Transfer Nomad

T’was a quiet, hot evening in Cabo Verde when the sisters got a call from their mission president. We had emergency transfers this week. And I was transferred… CAN I NOT JUST STAY IN MY OWN AREA FOR A FULL TRANSFER. I have no idea why we were transferred but here I am. I’m still in Praia, just a different area. I’m now companions with Sister Camilo who is from the Philippines, AND Sister Pina who is from Cabo Verde. I’m in a tripla. Aaand we only speak in portuguese. It’s been interesting. But they’re a lot of fun! I’m having a really good time.

Soooo I’ve been on my mission for 3 months and have already had 5 companions. I grew up a nomad and still am one. When Sister Yerman told me I was being transferred I collapsed on the floor and threw a tantrum. e verdade. Usually you can prepare for transfers because you know when they’ll be but emergency transfers are cray cray. You’re told you’re leaving and the next morning you leave. You don’t even get to say goodbye to your investigators or anything! I finally felt like I was getting a hold of my área and new all my investigators too.

Parenting 101

Oh yes, your ridiculous story of the week.
So Cabo Verde will not be winning any awards for best parents any time soon. We took a member with us to a lesson and she had her 2 year-old daughter with her. In the middle of the lesson the toddler pulled a bottle of nail polish out of her backpack and the mom took it from her. My first thought was, “Good thinking mom! Toddlers shouldn’t play with nail polish,” but then she opened the bottle for her and gave it back!!! I was like WHAT ARE YOU DOING! The toddler started waving the brush around, trying to pour the bottle of nail polish on my scriptures and painting my hand. I didn’t want to disrupt the lesson so I just let her paint my hand. BUT THEN. THEN she sticks the bottle of open nail polish IN HER MOUTH. I was like AGHHHHH!!!! and pulled the nail polish away from her nail polish covered mouth. Of course the toddler got super mad and I explained to the mom that she had been eating it. She just looked at me funny, took the bottle from me, and handed it back to the child. Why. Just why. So now the toddler is super mad but we continue on in the lesson. Then the toddler just loses it. She screamed at the top of her lungs and dragged the bottle of nail polish slowly down my face. Everyone just stared at my wide eyed face as the toddlers fist and bottle slowly dragged across my face. I can’t really give an accurate description of that moment. But it was pure madness.
Well that’s all I’ve got for you this week. FICA BEM. TCHAU!
-Sister Sharp
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No Shoes For a Baptism

ImageWe had two baptisms on Saturday which went really well! We had a small heart attack on the way there because we stopped by the house of the 15 year-old that was getting baptized and he was still there and said he couldn’t get baptized because he didn’t have shoes. I felt sooo bad for the poor kid. He was completely silent as we talked to him and just stared at the ground embarrassed that he didn’t have shoes. We quickly explained that shoes aren’t important and that not even Jesus had nice shoes. He then agreed to go and and ran to the church just in time. I think my favorite part of being a missionary is seeing the changes in people. David who is 20 and just got baptized was a thug when we first met him and would barely say three words to us. Now he’s always smiling and likes to share the things he find in the scriptures with us. Its crazy!

Rainy Season

We had our first big rainstorm this week. Let the rainy season begin! Rain is funny here because one second it will look perfectly fine then it will just start hardcore pouring rain. Also, since the roads are dirt roads my feet got very dirty but it was fun. Sister Yerman was not excited about walking in the rain but I was all for it. ADVENTURE. Unfortunately with the rain comes lots of bugs. We were at a church activity and by the time we were 20 minutes into the activity the room was completely swarmed with bugs. Our church isn’t air conditioned so we just kept the windows open. That was a bad idea. so. many. bugs. one flew in my mouth. gross.

Not Exactly A Nun

Speaking of weird things happening during church functions. In my district meeting yesterday a prostitute walked right in, sat down, and started saying some catholic prayer. We were like, ” Uhhh ma’am, were in the middle of the meeting.” She did not want to leave. Eventually two elders asked to speak to her outside which did get her out of the room but then she started taking her clothes off and we were all like AHHHHH NOOOO. Thankfully she left after that.

Oh yeah and we were in the middle of a lesson with a recent convert and it was going really well until someone was stabbed outside her house. Curse those stabbings. Always interrupting lessons.

Delicacy

We got a new sister in this week and it left me wondering if  looked that confused all the time when I got here. Probably. She threw half a bag of sour skittles in the trash!!!! When I saw it I ran to the trash screaming “NOOOO! SHE DOESN’T KNOW YET! SHE DOESNT KNOW AMERICAN CANDY IS A DELICACY!!!!” I took them out of the trash and ate them. They were delicious.

Three Things You Only Hear…

Praia in the Dark Aug 2013
I made a list of things that you only hear in my mission.
1. “Oh great, the recent convert stabbed the investigator in the neck.”
2. “I want you to move your beds away from the wall and if anything bites you in the middle of the night, go straight to the hospital. Don’t call me first.”
3.  “Does your toilet flush or do you flush it with a bucket of water?”
So to explain the first one… that’s something Sister Payton actually told me. She worked in Praia so long that she started teaching the gang in Praia. She literally had the Praia gang go to a ward activity… where they played musical chairs. Unfortunately I guess there was some contention between two of them because one got stabbed in the neck. It’s cool though, he lived. Weirdly enough that same thing happened to one of our investigators. Go figure.
The second one… well…this last week we found out the new house has a centipede infestation. Sister Payton found one that was 5 inches long in her clothes on the ground. I went Rambo on it. With a broom. Centipedes are gross… and poisonous… hence the reason our mission president’s wife gave us those instructions. I think we got rid of them though cause we sprayed raid everywhere.
And the third one… well that’s just something you ask people… that’s not uncommon.

Back in Praia

So I’m finally back in Praia. I just got home yesterday. I wasn’t only supposed to be there for 3 days but ended up staying for 2 weeks. It was fun but I only had 3 days worth of clothes so that was unfortunate…

I was sick the entire time I was there… I think there was still something wrong with the water filter. My comp and I spent more time in the bathroom than in lessons.  It was unfortunate.  But I still had a lot of fun!  Sister Payton is hilarious.
So other than being sick and battling centipedes the week was semi normal. we taught some lessons… and sweated.
I missed one of my baptisms while I was away from my area which was a bummer… but we have 2 more this Saturday so I look forward to that.  Plus we’re planning a few weddings. Yay!
It’s good to be home but now I miss the other area. I can’t win. I’m hoping to really step things up this transfer. I’ll probably be training next transfer so I really need to get good at the language and… well.. everything else. ~
August is hot as all get out here. you can literally feel the sun burning your skin. September is rainy season though! Apparently the streets completely flood here so that will be interesting.

No Reading!

Lindsay Harry Potter Aug 2013
I cannot believe how much I miss reading! I think I actually miss it as much as movies! I didn’t get to finish Alyssa’s book or Mom’s book before I left so sometimes I just sit there like “I wonder what the end was like…” It’s horrible! But the good news is I get back in the winter which means I can make hot chocolate and curl up on the couch for hours just reading. I look forward to that. I found a portuguese harry potter and I wanted to die.

Missionary life is hard but SO important. I wish everyone could serve a mission because you just grow so much and really understand the importance of the gospel. Definitely the best decision I ever made. 

miss you all!

Island Hop

Lindsay hot shower aug 2013Well this week I actually have more adventures than I can write about. I think I reported last week that my companion was made the sister leader in the area and that we had a big meeting to go to last Tuesday. A lot of sisters came in and stayed at our house because our house is basically the headquarters of the mission for the sisters. Along with all those sisters came Sister Webb, my last companion! It was great to see her.

We went to the meeting and for lunch we were driven to a super fancy restaurant that looked over the ocean. We drank soda out of wine glasses and were served half a chicken each. Literally. They killed 15 chickens just for our group. Lindsay and dessert

So that was cool. Then they brought out some delicious ice cream. Yum. After lunch Sister Webb had to go to a dentist appointment because she had a cavity. Bummer. The meeting was really long… and didn’t finish until 5 or 6. Around that time Sister Webb came back with a solemn look on her face. Apparently the dentist decided it would be a good idea to drill a giant hole in her tooth to fix the problem. Also the nurse messed up the numbing shot and hit a nerve. They then told her she would need a root canal to fix that problem. Our mission president then called her and her companion, and me and my companion into his office. He explained that Sister Webb would need to stay in Praia until she could get the problem fixed. He then looked at me and told me I would go back to her island with her companion and serve there until she could go back. So at 5AM the next morning I hopped on a plane and flew to another island. And I’m still here… not sure when Im going back but I think it will be soon.

It’s SO different here. It looks like europe… but with black people and palm trees. I felt like I was in a different country. There are a lot of portuguese people here. Some of them have like a caramel color skin, dark curly hair, and super light green eyes. Its crazy looking.

new island aug 2013

So as if thats not crazy enough for one week it just so happens that this is the week that these sisters are moving houses. I havent felt like a missionary this entire week because its been a crazy week of trying to get contracts filled out and things moved.
 

How to Move Cape Verde Style

Moving houses was a pain and I’m really glad I’ve moved so many times or that would not have gone as smoothly. Also they don’t have moving trucks here… you just flag down a pickup truck on the side of the road and ask if you can give them like 800 escudos ($10) to help you move. their idea of what you can fit in a pickup truck was very different from ours. For some reason they thought it was perfectly fine to put two mattresses on an upright refrigerator with a table on top of that. I wish I had a picture of it cause I can’t believe we all survived. There was also two cabinets (one of which was hanging of the side of the truck), a lot of grocery bags of stuff, us and two elders crammed back there. The driver completely passed the house and what does he do? A three point turn? No, he just turns around and drives on the sidewalk all the way back to the house. Crazy Cabo Verdeans…
 
The house is SO nice. It looks like a fancy new york loft. Unfortunately we got there and the oven and stove didn’t work, and there was no washing machine. And it has cockroaches. Cockroaches here are HUGE. My companion found one on her back the first night we slept there. But it has hot water! I TOOK A HOT SHOWER! I seriously felt like royalty.
 
I got there and the next morning I got sick. Apparently Sister Webb and Sister Payton have been sick this entire last transfer and haven’t known why. I told them to check their water filter which is comprised of 3 tubes. The first two looked pretty normal but when we looked at the third we realized that someone had put the wrong filter in there. We looked up what that part filters out and I kid you not, the description was “filters out bacteria, viruses, and parasites.” So I have no idea what I drank but I am slowly recovering from that.
 
We also locked ourselves out of our house yesterday and man climbed up a ladder and into our window to open our door while a drunk man held the bottom of the ladder.
 
There are so many crazy things that have happened this week…I can’t even remember them all. By the time we locked ourselves out of the house I just started laughing uncontrollably because it has been the most ridiculous week.
 
I hope everyone is doing well and keep emailing me cause I love hearing from you!
-Sister Sharp