Hello everyone - First things first: I leave three Mondays from now (assuming I counted right). The departure date is coming fast and I can’t wait.
I really think that the brethren knew that I was good with languages but that I probably couldn’t take somewhere really hard. Hence, I’m going to Madagascar. It seems like we have to be physically fit and be able to grasp weird languages. I don't know that Mad will require the mental toughness of some really hard missions where no one wants to hear about the gospel. The teachers tell us how the people in Mad are anxious to hear about the gospel and that is good news to me.
I am very ill. I threw up about six times last night and have a super sick stomach. So naturally, I am dehydrated. I got a blessing last night from Elder Evans. Once I was so sick, so bad that I asked for a blessing. I then proceeded to throw up a million times around 1:30 in the morning. O such fun. I still feel crappy so I hope I don’t go and throw up my lunch. Let’s hope that it stays down. I do have one cool experience from this very not cool experience, however. As I was tossing and turning in my bed last night, there was a Malagasy man in my dreams. I cannot recall what he said, but it was something to the effect of comforting words. I am sipping Powerade right now and hope I feel better before the weekend. I have zero energy. I did audition today for the mission president's wife and the woman from Mo-Tab. I did pretty well and am singing at a fireside Sunday night. My friends are planning to record it. We'll see.
I don't think I am losing muscle. It's crazy, it's like I've never been so ripped in my life. The food not so good, the exercise equipment no so good, and I'm sick. But, whatever. Please send the protein powder before I leave for Mad. This won't be my one and only bout of sickness, so I hear.
The I-Pod is probably one of the best presents I’ve ever received. Not because of it’s sweet styling, or its amazing technological capabilities, but for the music that is on there. It is touching to know that all those songs were picked out exactly for me. It has every thing that I have been wanting to listen to…and more! There are even opera songs that I was sure I had lost a very long time ago. How in the world did you get them? I was thinking about it and I have come to the conclusion that you did not buy all of those songs off of i-tunes. That would be a cost to the tune of $700. I know you guys love me, but money doesn’t grow on trees (at least not in Texas. only pine needles). So the question still remains: where did you get all of that music?
Me and my companion, Elder Evans, are doing much better than before. We have become much better friends than previously. It isn’t that we were enemies before. It is just the friction that comes with being around someone so much. I love Elder Evans.
As for food - I wish I was eating at Pappas! How I long for the delicious shrimp and Cajun tenderloins. Sigh. Nice job on the going to Jade Garden for Christmas Eve. I feel like we have done that before for some holiday. Ahh, such sweet memories. No matter the time of year, wonton soup and some Chinese chicken variation hits the spot. A Christmas Eve alone sounds pretty amazing right now. You lucky kids. I think your description of that Sunday lunch with brisket and crawfish jambalaya and fudge and deviled eggs was probably the greatest thing I have ever heard of in my life. And wait…sausage balls?! I can’t even remember the last time I ate those delicious little orbs of meat and saturated mouthwatering fat.
So my Christmas was good. We stayed up all night long and had a giant sleep over. It was way fun. We started reciting (or making up) Christmas poetry and it was quite hilarious. The next day was pretty awesome. We woke up at 6:30 and ran in our pajamas to the Indo’s classroom. There we had set up a Christmas tree and we had gathered all of our presents under it. We all opened presents and were quite happy. When I opened my gift I was totally expecting a very old I-Pod Shuffle. Then I pulled out the real thing. Holy COW! I just stared at the case for awhile. Then one of my friends, Elder Palmer, said, “Dude, did they send you a real I-Pod?” To this I said, “Ummmm. Ya I guess. They never would have gotten me this back home.” To that remark everyone laughed. That I-Pod is probably the coolest thing I have ever seen. When I clicked on one of the songs (Vivaldi’s Four Seasons: Winter) and the music started playing out of the speakers…I was amazed. Then everyone went wild and said that it was probably the greatest gift ever.
The food on Christmas was alright. Can’t complain (too much). For our morning speaker we had Elder L. Tom Perry. He read scriptures to us. Luckily, I persevered and stayed awake the whole time. Hopefully we get another apostle before we leave. I’m shooting for Uchtdorf. Later that day we had a talent show. At night we had same artist guy come and give a fireside on his pictures. The last thirty minutes of the program was all about the 2nd counselors wife telling us a story. It was the story of Artamen, the fourth wise man or magi. It was pretty fantastic and I can honestly say that it was the best story/story-teller I have ever heard in my life. She quoted the entire thing. In fact, this woman never uses notes and I think she has a photographic memory. So that was my Christmas in a nutshell. Pretty good I’d say.
I hope you guys have a extra super wonderful awesome New Years. And for all the people who read my blog…umm…thanks! I miss everyone so much. Love, Elder Cryer