Friday, November 1, 2013

Letter #23 (Oct .28 2013)

Dear Family,
I’m sorry I forgot to write about the earthquake. It was a really big
deal for some of the other islands. Especially in Cebu, there was
massive destruction. For us, it was more just scary than harmful. It
started during personal study and I thought sister natarte was pushing
against our desks, but then Sis. Ang (another sister in the house)
told us to all get outside. It lasted a long time for an earthquake…
at least a couple of minutes. It felt like we were on a boat, but more
jerky. Haha, it was my first time in an earthquake so I was more
confused than anything else. Sister Natarte was really freaked out
because there was a really bad earthquake when she was little. But
this one wasn’t too bad and there weren’t any problems  here in
Pulupandan at least. But we did hear about some other problems in
other islands.
Last night we had a brown out.  (Black out) We were in a dangerous
part of our area with a lot of drunks, but we have such amazing
investigators in that area and Bishop’s house is close if we have any
problems so we are extremely careful (don’t freak out mom.) But if
there is no electricity anywhere, then it becomes a little more tricky
to remain safe. It was around 7:20 when we were walking to an
appointment and everything went completely black.  It was a cloudy
night so there wasn’t even the moonlight.  I immediately grabbed
Sister Natarte and we locked arms and I just said, “we need to leave
NOW” We were walking as fast as we could with our linked arms and she
was feeling along the wall to know which direction to walk and I was
frantically digging through my bag trying to find my mini flashlight
keychain (thanks dad, it’s a life saver) and also looking for the cell
phone. We got the flashlight and ran directly to Bishop’s house and
stayed there for around 20 minutes but there still wasn’t any light,
but the other sisters called us and told us to come home now and that
they were there. We went home and got out all the candles and we got
to study and plan all by candlelight and then cook and eat dinner by
candle light (how romantic… haha). This was actually the 3rd or 4th
time that we have had a brown out but this one was definitely the
longest. I always feel like a real pioneer missionary when we get to
study at our big wooden desks by candlelight. It really is a neat
experience. It’s just a little hard when you need to use the CR
Also this week we had a long time investigator who really hasn’t been
progressing, but she came to church on Sunday!!!! It was just two
weeks ago that she was running away from us… litterally.  We came to
her house and when she saw us she ran to the back gate, but there was
a lock on it and she couldn’t get it undone fast enough and she was
trying to get away so fast and she seemed so stressed out, so we just
said, “can we help you sister?” She just got more mad and finally got
the door open and ran away.  We were actually really depressed about
it and were about to give up, but she finally started reading her
libro ni mormon and she told us she wanted to come to church and then
she came and told us afterwards that she wants to come every week and
she now has a baptism date for Nov. 30. Her name is Sister Isabell and
just last night she defended us against some neighbors who were
mocking us and cat-calling. She will really be a force to be reckoned
with when she’s a member.  She is going to be such a great help to
this ward.
Also, there is an election going on, so there have been a lot of
campaigning parades through town.During one of them, I waved to a
couple of the kids who know me from around the neighborhood (it really
is a small town), but then the whole parade of kids started following
me instead of the candidate.  He started getting a little angry but I
really couldn’t do anything about it. We tried walking faster, but
they just kept running after us. I went up to the candidate and shook
his hand and apologized, but he was still pretty angry. I hope he
wins, just so he doesn’t blame me for anything. Haha!
Anyway, I love you all so much and I really do appreciate all of you.
Thank you for your support and stories. I really do have a testimony
that I’m supposed to be here, even though some days can still be hard.
I know that this is where the Lord wants me and I’m grateful that you
were able to help me get here! Love you lots!
Sister Smoot

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