Hello everyone, this is Josh. I am home! I have to be here right now and take care of some things but the good.. actually the great news is that I can and will be going back out. If you have any questions about Peru, my experiences, or just about anything I would love to talk. Give me a call, give me a visit. I missed you all.
Fam Bam, I am in my first area.. and so excited it is called Háunuco.. (I think that is how you spell it..) the area is Paucarbamba.. everyone says it is the most sought after zone in the mission.. It took nine hours by bus to get here.. I felt as though i was in a movie.. first we drove out of Lima.. high high high up into the mountains.. because eventually we had to go down the other side of the mountain.. we went through crazy tunnels burrowed out through the mountains. In the morning there were clouds that we drove through.. eventually we passed through the selva.. wich is just a thick jungle. and now I am here. It was so crazy. Like you can´t even imagine. It was like a movie. It is a solid 70-80 every day.. and it is winter!! we have some selva.. but mountains also. It is so cool. The people here are really receptive. Our goal is one baptism per week. We already have one this Saturday., the people are so open to the message here in Peru. in February our mission alone had 250 baptisms.. crazy. crazy. crazy. My new companion is de Argentina. His name is Elder Morales. I will probably gain an accent for a bit.. he is super nice and super patient. He is 21 and he has 14 months in the mission and is super funny. Our day with the President was awesome, we got Dunkin Doughnuts and pizza.. and then hit the bus. All my MTC buddies are in different areas but I know I will see them throughout the mission and I am thankful for that. I can´t believe I am finally here. It is so real. I am about to go meet with Anell.. who is getting baptized this Saturday.. and then I am meeting with Liliano.. who we want to asked to be baptized the ninth of june.. pray for me 🙂 my Pinchanista is awesome.. yes she does my clothes and makes us food. Every day is juice with chicken and rice..My shower is decently hot which I was very happy about. Everything just seems so real. Here in Huanuco they only have taxitos.. which are really small taxis.. on p day I will try to get a pic with one.. Monday is p day by the way for the rest of the mission.. so monday I can write again..-. but anyways it is the only zone in the mission where you are allowed to ride in these small cars.. loco, but awesome. I had to ride in one from the bus stop.. they strapped my two huge suitcases on the top — they are bigger than the car. no joke. it was so crazy. ahhh I am just so happy to be here and to be able to bring others this gospel. I learn so much every day and am so thankful to be here. I love you guys so much. I hope you have a fabulous summer.. I will have a fabulous winter.. no worries 🙂 love you.
Dad, this week nothing really significant happened, nothing great , nothing bad.. Just the normal. I am very excited to leave though, that is for sure. Today we had to go to immagration and we were there for about four hours.. a lot of spanish that i didn’t understand but I made it through. I can´t believe my MTC experience is almost done.. the next time I write you will be from the field. Don´t worry about me though.. I promise I am doing great. I love your advice and appreciate it so much.. Keep it coming please. Also, please remember how much I love you.. and have fun mowing the lawn this summer! 😉 .. (sorry i had to.. the fact you bought a new lawn mower gives me the oppurtunity to make fun of you..)
Mom : I hope I can call you this week or next.. that would be such a blessing!! I miss you like crazy and am sorry Mothers day was hard.. it was hard for me also… but just think… only one more!! That is crazy talk.. you will probably be very happy to find out that yes I have used my piano skills here.. I think I am the only one in the country of Peru who knows how to play. I play at every sacrament, every musical number, and every devotional.. so about 15 times a week… I love himno 88 the best– it isn´t in english but it is super cool.. you should look it up.. I was also wondering if you guys could send me pics more often.. that would be awesome. I love receiving them.. maybe of the cousins and stuff too after the bbq? I am enjoying my last warm showers because I hear in the field it is ice cold.. can´t wait to come home to a warm shower. Mom you are such a good example of how to raise a family.. going to the zoo with the kids sounds like it was way fun.. they are so lucky to have you.. I love you so much and please keep emailing me and letting me know how everything is. I love you with all my heart and love your awesome quotes you send me.. te amo madre… mucho mucho mucho. extrano usted mas que palabras puedan explicar. con toda de mi corazon..
Hey fam bam 🙂 So many experiences I want to share this week.. First off to my mother.. I won’t be able to call this Sunday and I am sorry.. the rumor is I will be able to call when I get to the field march 21.. or 22.. we will see. I can´t believe I only write home one more time and then by the next p day I will be in the field. I am sooo excited. also I wrote each of you letters, hand written and they come pick those up on monday. and then it will take about a week from monday to get to you.. Mom, your mothers day letter is one of them.. sorry it will be so late. This week I was part of an earthquake!! one of the craziest experiences ever.. I have never quite felt a sensation like that before.. it was like my whole body was vibrating.. pretty cool. some stuff fell over, I was in class.. we got under the desks.. the teacher told us it was normal for Lima east to have earthquakes.. hahaha. don´t worry mom I am ok. The water here at the MTC is filtered but when I leave yes I will have to always drink out of my water bottle. The temp here is still amazing solid 70-80 every day.. loving it. my new companion is from mexico and his name is Elder Rodriguez. I will learn his first name so I can send it next week.. he is a great kid and I am surprised at how much we can talk about. the spanish truly is flowing. I think so often about the day when me mom and dad will be able to talk for hours. I am glad you guys have had a great week, I also have. we get to go proselyte on saturday and I can´t wait. probably my favorite thing ever.. the avengers and hunger games both are already out? Now I just have to endure the pains of Batman and the Hobbit.. but hey, those movies aren´t as cool as Peru. I can guarantee that, this place is a wonderland of adventure.. honestly. this experience has already been amazing. I hope you guys think of me this mothers day as I will think of you.. Dad wear a green tie and I will also.. it can be our mothers day thing.. actually you don’t have green… let’s do blue. blue tie. I love you guys so much, I hope you all enjoy the summer a ton. I am going to try to attach pictures to this.. I hope it works…
Family. I miss you and love you so much. I first want to tell you about the most spiritual experience I have yet had in my life. Saturday we went proceliting.. or however you spell it.. and me and Elder Palomo were knocking doors.People would let us in and talk, but we weren’t getting anywhere with people really. We were leaving a house and there was a man in the street his name is Jonathon.. Jonathon came up to us, asked us about who we were and we began to tell him and tell him of our message.He was so excited and asked us to walk him to his house so we could share it with his family. He exclaimed “I have been waiting for this my entire life ” we proceeded to his house(which was the size of my room.. actually smaller). His door is a curtain and he has six people living there. Him,his wife, and four kids. We entered and his wife was in the kitchen he then told her who we were and she was eager to come listen. We ended up talking for an hour and a half with them about how their family can be together forever.We gave them a Book of Mormon and they committed to read it.They went to church on sunday and are meeting the missionaries in the area this week. Jonathon was crying the entire time..He kept saying he wished his mom ( who lived down the street) could be there to hear.Now, the most amazing part of this story is that when we were about to leave.. his mother showed up at their house. Me, Elder Palomo and Jonathon had tears in our eyes when she came.. We then shared the message with her and she felt it was right. I am very envious of the missionaries who now will get to baptize this family. I know with all my heart they will be. It was the most amazing experience of my life.I am so thankful for the gift of tounges. I am so thankful for this gospel. I have never felt joy like this in my life, the joy of bringing someone else true happiness. I am so blessed to be able to do this for twenty two and a half more months.. it is the most amazing thing in the world.
Today we got our tour of Lima. I bought an awesome satchel, and a sick Brazil outfit ( soccer ) yellow shirt with the blue and yellow shorts. We got to go to pizza hut.. which was truly amazing after eating this food the whole time.. We also went to a museum which had tons of ancient artifacts from the Incans.. very very cool. I have tons of pics and can’t wait to send you them. All the Latins left yesterday.. and now I have a new companion. I am very sad because I loved Elder Palomo so much.. but its ok. His last words to me in his broken english were ” I will see you again, we have promise ” .I can’t believe in three weeks I will be in the actual field!! I am so excited for that opportunity. Sometimes I forgot it isn’t really normal to be walking down the street lined with palm trees.. or to see stray dogs walking around.. oh ya and lets not forget their crazy driving.. mom you will DIE when you come here. I learned how to tie an AWESOME tie.. it is sooo cool. I will send pics later with it.. a latin taught me it.. he called it the ambassador tie ?? Its very cool.Thank you for sharing your emails with me. Please keep sending them. Love you all. Hasta Luego
Family, so much to say and no time to say it as usual. I am about to go get on the bus and head to the temple, but let me tell ya about my week :). Every Saturday we get the opportunity to go tract for six hours in Lima City.. it is such an adventure. The most humbling experience of my life. These people literally have nothing.. i mean nothing. Their houses are built right into the mountain, just like all the pictures on the internet. You go into their houses and there are just tons of mice running around. Their rooms are separated with sheets. There are hundreds of dogs running around and it is sorta scary, BUT these are the happiest people you have ever met. They are so kind and loving to us even though they have nothing to be thankful for, (it seems) they are thankful for so much. When they pray then never ask for anything. They just thank their Heavenly Father or their God for the little they do have. I love preaching this gospel, I feel so powerful when I do. On saturday I made this very old woman start to cry when I bore my testimony and I couldn’t help but cry myself. When I preach doctrine or bare my testimony the spanish just flows like a fountain and I don’t even have to think about it. I am so thankful for the help of the spirit and the help of my Heavenly Father to let me bring others unto him. We climbed the mountain so high up that we could see the whole city of Lima from the top. We were climbing stairs that are about an inch wide. Talk about an adventure! It was so beautiful, it was right at sunset. There are tons of dogs at the top of the mountain and they eat out of buckets that are filled with I don’t even know what! But they don’t bite… yet!! So that’s ok. I am thankful to have not seen an arana (spider) yet… knock on wood. The insects here aren’t to bad yet. Random cravings I have had are: Oreos with REAL milk.. the leche just doesn’t do justice to anything. A snow cone…. and a hamburger.. oh and the number one thing DR PEPPER… but that’s ok.. I know this is where I should be. I felt it the second I stepped off the plane. I have a love for this place already that I can not describe. I am so thankful for this opportunity. I miss you guys so much. I think about you every second. You are always in my heart. I bet doing the lawn is just super fun… but I would sorta rather be here 😉 I hope all is well and you guys have a great summer, as I am sure you will. I know mom loves this time of year so much.. I wish I could be there to enjoy this time with you guys. I miss going out to eat with dad, and I miss just talking with my sister.. but I also know you guys support me with all your heart and i am so thankful for that. I have a latin companion and two americans. Elder Corry is still my companion along with Elder Billy Kerivan. We are with our latin companions all day except when we are learning spanish. Everything here is in spanish though so I tend to pick it up quick. I can’t believe how much I now know. I am so thankful for the opportunity to be here in this CCM because I learn so many useful words that I know I would not have learned in Provo. the Latins here are such an inspiration. My companion has such a strong testimony and helps me so much in my life. I can’t wait to be in the field and work all day to bring people unto Christ… less than a month left till that wish comes true. I pray for you daily, many times.I hope you are being blessed. Tell my cousins I love them, and that they should look forward to this time. I am about to go get myself some Inca kola 🙂 so I have to go… but I already have bought some SICK scripture covers and some sick peruvian things. Next Wednesday we get to go buy jerseys.. I love you guys. So much. . . till next week 🙂 les amo!
FAMILY, I only have seven minutes to write you because we are late and the are so strict here 😦 . I just got back from lima and yes I have my Inca Cola with me (by the way it is way better here ¨). I got very sick this week.. sicker than i have ever been… and as all the teachers said… “welcome to Peru”. Its ok. Don’t worry. I am better now… but it was terrible. I was up all night puking :(. My compianons full name is Eusebio Palomo. He is amazing! He teaches me so much daily. My roomates are from Ecuador, Bolivia, Mexico and Utah. I have two companions, a latin and an american. It is such a blessing to be here. Most of these kids are their families main scource of income, yet they still come here to serve. It is such a humbling experience. I just got back from my first Temple session in Spanish. It was amazing! I understood so much! (thanks to the spirit) I can’t wait to go with you guys there. It will be amazing. The food here is very good.. but some of it is very scary. Playing soccer is the funnest thing in the world. There are kids here who have been on semi pro teams and who are amazing, but they love the Americans and I can actually hold my own! Everyone loves everyone here and I love it. It has been in the 80s all week and will be next week as well. Lima is basically a mini Las Vegas. (like with a strip and gambling haha). We rode on a bus today and stood up the whole way. Probably about 50 people in a 20 person bus. No exagerration. We stood up by the peruvian school girls. (I’m sure Taylor has a fond memory of his chilean school girls and dad does of his spanish ones). Dad, you have to go back to Barcelona and go through the temple.. it is amazing. I told my companion that in Utah there are up to 150 people in a session and he about died. He feels the spirit so strongly.. he cries a lot because of the tender feeilng the spirit brings. I honestly love it here. I really do . It has already been the most uplifting experience of my life! I miss you guys so much. Everyone loves to see your pictures and say ” with all respect, your sister is VERY beautiful ” I love them. I am about to go play soccer right now and I can’t wait. Every drink here is a fruit drink and every night we have the “hour of the fruit.”It is a time we all go and eat fresh fruit together and talk. We do it every night at 9. The fruit here is DELICIOUS and fresh. My spanish has improved so much. Like its crazy. I can’t wait to call you and show you how good I am. I hope you know that you guys mean the world to me. Honestly. A day will never go by that I don’t think about you. It is very humid here and a lot of insects. I am just used to ants crawling all over me now and it isn’t a big deal. Everyone is really helpful with the spanish and they love to learn english. They love it. The hardest thing is knowing the latinos leave in two weeks and we have to see them go. They are the biggest blessing in the world. I will miss them with all my heart. I gave one of them extra scripture markers that I had and he cried. He was so thankful. I just want to give them everything I have because they have nothing. I gave some of them quarters and dimes and they were so intrigued. Lima is amazing, the sunsets here are more beautiful than anything I have ever seen. I honestly can’t describe the feeling of joy I have just being here. It is my Disneyland (happiest place on earth 🙂 )
We received our first email from Josh after his arrival to the Peru CCM.
Josh is now in Lima Peru. We watched his flight on the internet last night, and he arrived safely at 11:04 PM Lima time. (10:04 PM here)
Here are some pictures he sent home from his time in the Provo MTC:
Thursday April 12th we got an unexpected phone call from Josh. Only two days after his original departure date his Visa arrived and he was told at 7 O’Clock at night he would be leaving at 6 am Friday the 13th. Josh was very excited to go. He was happy he was able to see his friend, Brennen Peterson, in the MTC. He would have missed him by a day if he hadn’t been delayed. There was a bit of frantic communication between us and Josh. He was allowed the one phone call, but then he sent a few emails and we were able to exchange a few last minute details before he left. This morning Josh called for a few minutes from the Salt Lake Airport. He said that his bags weighed in at 49 pounds and 50 pounds. Exactly at weight limit. 🙂 He said it was hard to say goodbye to the district, but he and Elder Corry were ready to go and happy to be on their way to Peru. We received one final phone call from his stop in Atlanta, He said he was going to enjoy his last moments in the states by finding a good restaurant to eat at, and drink some Dr. Pepper. At 3:30pm Mountain time Josh boarded his flight and flew over the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean and left the USA for another 23 months. At 10:15PM tonight he will be in Lima, Peru. Josh said it was weird to think that he had waited his entire life to go to the MTC, and it was strange to think that experience is over. Now he is at the CCM in Lima for 6 more weeks. Please use his address info on the website to contact him. He would greatly appreciate hearing from you all as he starts this new phase of his mission. (By the way, the word for Fox in spanish is Zorro) Tomorrow we’ll post photos from the MTC.