Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Elder Kade Larsen wrote saying, "I'm a Dad."  Don't worry.  It means that he has a newer missionary and is completing that Elder's training.  He had his first transfer this week.  Here is what he said with some paraphrasing.

Whoo.. Things have changed quite a bit lately for me to tell you the truth. Its been a little bit crazy for sure. Anyways, yeah I got the email from Whitney as well. That is super awesome that she is going to Missouri. That will be an interesting mission where she will learn a lot. She said she doesn't have many church history sites in her mission but she will still learn a lot about them.  
"Yes I got transferred. I got transferred out of my birthplace/hometown. I seriously grew so close to the people there it was so hard to leave. BUT, I got transferred to a place where all the missionaries want to go! Bucaramanga! Whoot! I am in an area called Diamante (Diamonds). Its a pretty wealthy area of Bucaramanga they say so that will be interesting. I left Tunja yesterday around 5, we went to Bogota and waited in the terminal to leave for Bucaramanga for another 2 hours. The crappy thing is to go Bucaramanga you have to pass by Tunja.  When you get transferred it is mission policy that you go to Bogota first. Its about 3 or 3 1/2 from Tunja to Bogota. And then from Bogota to Bucaramanga direct is 10 hours. So, I was in a bus for 13 hours almost straight. Wow. Seriously sucked. It was better than what some missionaries had to do but man it was miserable. The whole night in the bus. I probably slept around 2 hours of it all because its not a very soft ride.
 I got to my apartment/new companion around 8:30 A.M. My new companion is from Cali, Colombia. He is a lot more like I am in the way of sports and all that kind of stuff. I think we will get a long really well. He is new. I will be his "dad" for the second half of his training. So, he is my first son. I guess I am a step dad but dad is easier, lol. Today we played futbol (soccer) around 10 (I had no energy) and I probably lost 4 pounds in sweat. ITS HOT HERE!! UGH. People always say its hot but not too hot in Bucaramanga. Well, in my opinion, its pretty hot, lol. After we went to the house showered and went to centro comercial.
Oh, we don't have hot water here in Bucaramanga. I thought it would be refreshing. I WAS WRONG. Its like having an ice bath when I used to play football in high school but its a shower.
I had north American food today! I had McDonalds Chicken McNuggets. We also found a Subway so next Monday we are going to go buy Subway (oooo yeah!). Meatball sub here I come..
Leaving Tunja, wow, I honestly felt a lot like I did when I was leaving home for the mission. There are so many people there that I am close to. One of my first investigators had been training in Bogota for his cycling stuff. He came back to Tunja to say goodbye. We were talking for a minute and we both started crying after a few minutes of talking. Man, he is literally like another brother. So many families were very hard to leave as well.  We had to cancel our lunches because we had to be in the house before church got out to receive the call about the transfers. After we found out, I started calling a few people to say I was leaving. One family came and picked us up and we went there for lunch before I had to leave.
In Jade´s letter he said he doesn't like the Panita. Panita is Mondongo here. Its the same thing I said I hated awhile ago. Its horrible, seriously horrible. My first time eating it I didn't know what it was till after. I wanted to throw it all back up. I just thought it was chicken or something but with loads of fat on it. (I had told Kade that his cousin ate something called Panita.  It is cow stomach.  It has little hairs and is like eating pure fat.  They serve it in a soup.)
We need to get going. Thanks for the letters and all this week. I heard from quite a few people.  I will send a pic of my new companion next week. He really is a pretty cool guy. He says the only problem here in this area is that the members don't care about missionary work and the young men don't want to go serve missions. Well great, I guess we will have to get some of them excited about missions.  
Hopefully we get to talk with Elder Larsen on Mother's Day.  He did not mention a time that he would be calling. We'll have the whole family here to talk with him so hopefully we can connect. 
Gary looked up Bucaramanga and it is a huge city.  There are two stakes there for the church.  He also said it was  pretty close to the Venezuelan border.

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