Tag Archives: Portuguese

Y otra semana

Hello, people,

You asked about my classes for next semester. I have no idea what to take. I´m interested in a Portuguese course, so you can research that if you want. Other than that, I have no idea. I had hoped that during the mission I would find something that would click as a major, and it hasn´t happened.

You asked about strays. There are more strays in one Colombian city than in all of Alabama. The dog packs don´t threaten people, but they´re always around. The pictures you sent of the strays at home didn´t get here, though. Maybe there were too many?

This week was the transfer and we weren´t touched. I´ll be staying here in Valledupar until the end, barring some mid-month surprise. Speaking of which, I doubt the itinerary you received is correct. I´ve seen a lot of travel plans and the flights are always on Thursdays. It also seems highly unlikely that I´ll be passing by Dallas between Colombia and Alabama, since I´d have to basically fly over Alabama to get there. You never know though, and it´d be great.
Has Rachel still not received her call? A sister in our ward here sent in her papers the week after Rachel and got her call last week, for Ecuador. Don´t forget to tell me when it comes.
I got the letter from Jason, (once) and I´m glad his career is going well. It´s a shame he has to move, especially to a Yankee place, but I know he can handle it.
I also am thinking about buying a new suit, but I haven´t decided. Mine has little holes worn in the belt loops, but aside from that it´s still in good shape. I might be able to get it repaired in the states. Here I can get a name-brand suit for about one-twenty, but I really don´t know how good the quality is. Suggestions?

Ok, ya, chao,

Elder Belú
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Pirates of the Caribbean–Tayrona, Colombia

Well, I had to go to Tayrona this week to supervise a group of missionaries in a zone p-day. Elder Ribeiro found the problem with my camera, too, so it works now to send photos home. Tayrona is where they filmed Pirates of the Caribbean, so it´s a pretty nice location. I have a lot of pictures from the outing, but I´ll just send a teaser right now.
I had to talk to another missionary from my group in the other mission to ask for some info they´ve got and he told me that they´re going home the nineteenth of December. I don´t know if that´s true for me, too, but it´s likely to be close. I´ll have very little time, but I think I´ll use that time to chose classes at BYU. I´m still a freshman, so I basically can´t sign up for classes before time, anyway. I´ll just postpone that headache for when I can take painkiller without asking permission. I would like it if you can look at the list of required classes to see if there´s anything I absolutely have to take right away, and if you want to put together a rough draft schedule, that´ll be great. If you sign me up for something I don´t want, I can drop it. I guess that after the work Chris put into it, it´ll be easy to show me how to klep Spanish. I expect I´ll be able to pass at least the most basic levels with just a test. I think I can remember how to say perro.
We started an English/Portuguese class and it generated a lot of interest. I don´t remember how much of my interest in Portuguese I´ve communicated, but now the missionary who motivated my interest in the language is my companion. I´m even thinking about taking a class in Portuguese.  It´s really easy, just like the German version of Spanish.
As for housing, I´m sure that a few people will get married in in Chris’s apartment complex and if not, there´s always other options.
You asked about blood pudding. The things that I don´t want to eat are the same things that the majority of the Colombians don´t eat either. I´ve learned to like cow stomach soup and tongue wasn´t too bad, but they´ve never given me blood pudding.
I´d like to take time to work and rest after the mission, but I can´t find anything about that in the Plan of Salvation. I´m sure that everything will work out, like last time. I feel happier when I have a purpose, and when I´m following the guidance of the prophet. I have officially decided, entonces, that I´ll start school again in January. I just have to learn English again.
That´s the plan, then. Let me know if you need me to do anything, but I guess you´ve already done the hard part.
Anyway, until next time,
Amo voces,
Elder Belyeu

Mother’s Day Call Home

Hey, Everybody,
Jon called home this afternoon. We used Skype again, and, just like his calls for Christmas and last Mother’s Day, it was hard. This time the first internet cafe he and his companion visited had a power outage as they tried to start their calls. It took them over an hour to find a shopping mall with functioning internet. By then, his companion’s family had given up on their call. (The companion plans to try again tomorrow.)
Jon struggled to speak to us in English, reverting to Spanish often during the call. Recently a Colombian asked Jon for help with English grammar homework, and it took Jon several readings to understand the question. He doesn’t even have an English-language Bible anymore–he got rid of his English scriptures months ago after they got wet and grew mold. He studies in Spanish and in Portuguese. (He can’t pronounce the Portuguese, but finds that looking at it helps him understand Spanish better.)
The Colombian climate is hot and wet. He says the weather is simple–some days are rainy, some days are sunny, and some days it rains while the sun shines. He walks all day long in water, then comes home and soaks his feet in a bleach solution to prevent fungus infections. He also bathes daily, usually in a proper shower, though he has washed with five liter bags of drinking water at times when the city water was turned off. He says with proper hygiene it’s easy to prevent infections–he hasn’t had any kind of problem with fungus, and his overall health is good. His shoes, on the other hand, are full of holes, and his socks wore out. He asked us to send him American socks for his birthday, and he’s going to buy new shoes there in Colombia.
Jon’s camera still takes pictures, but he can’t send the pictures to us. Hopefully when he gets home we’ll find a way to get them off the camera.
He doesn’t have a cell phone, in fact, very few of the missionaries do. This is a security measure to keep the missionaries from being targeted by robbers. (One set of elders in Barranquilla had their cell phone stolen at gunpoint three weeks in a row.) It’s inconvenient that we didn’t have a way to call him to set up the Skype, but the policy seems to be working–Jon hasn’t been robbed.

He looks fine. We’ve very glad that he kept trying to call us until he got through!