Monday, October 24, 2016

October 24, 2016: Many, Many Crazy Sights!

What's Up Everyone?

Okay this week I had many, many crazy sights!  Actually just one...but I'll get to that in a bit!

So this week was great. I´m loving it out here! The first week was a bit of a culture shock but this week I´m used to everything and am loving it. Weird things... they sell "Halls" here everywhere! It's candy to them. I had one and it tastes exactly like the medicine back at home.. haha   Also, the place where we live, the members that live below us have a dog that looks and sounds just like Sammy! Just not as fat... but still a little weird. Also there are dogs everywhere!  They all look like they have rabies.  In addition, there are horses everywhere. Just random horses without an owner grazing on the... trash. haha It's kinda weird. They are super skinny and look like they have rabies too. So that's fun! haha

Picture I drew of Nephi making his wooden bow!

So, after emailing you guys last week we went to a big island in the ocean and rode a boat to it!  It was so cool. It's a big tourist area.

There was a leather shop and they had the coolest stuff!  They had these wine/water bottles that the outside was a cow leg!! haha And they had these viking style hats! The coolest thing though was they had cow horns made into actual horns.. like bugles.. haha one of them looked exactly like Borimir´s horn (in Lord of the Rings) I wanted to buy it soooo bad. But I decided to wait. haha 

Me holding the COW LEG water bottle!
Tuesday was the interesting day. So I woke up with a bunch of bug bites. Then we picked up the member that we were teaching with and went to the first investigator's house. We were teaching the Restoration to a mom, her sister, baby, and kids. Anyways I started talking and was gathering my thoughts on Joseph Smith, and when I looked up, the lady had her boob out breastfeeding her baby!! I literally was so shocked I forgot all that I wanted to say. Then I just badly finished my part about Joseph Smith, while looking at the sister and just the eyes of the mom... and then when my companion was talking I just looked at him the whole time. I didn't even wanna look over at the lady. Eventually she finished up and it was all good. But then I was bearing my testimony and she had it out again!! So basically it was a bad lesson and we aren't going back there. haha After that I stepped in dog poo and stuff. And something else happened that sucked but around like 5 I was looking back at the day and just started laughing and changed my attitude about it all. So my day was good despite all that happened. (Although I´d rather not have a lady do that again. hahaha)

After that, the week was pretty calm. The language is coming along really well. It´s really clicking in my head. And when I have the spirit with me while I'm teaching I literally just start talking calmly and normally. It´s amazing! I would be teaching and would start using words that I forgot I even knew. They´d just come to me. haha  Also one of the sisters that is in our district said that one of the Brazillian elders was talking to her and said my conjugation of verbs is better  than hers (and shes been out for 10 months)! haha I didn't really know how to respond to her... I just kinda said uhhh thanks... and sorry I guess. hahaha  But she talked overall waaayyy better than me so it´s all good. 

Me and Elder Araújo
My companion is really cool! He´s kinda quiet but he's really patient and is a good trainer. Also I guess on Saturday they all want me to teach an english class! haha So hopefully that goes well. On Sunday we had the Mission President come and we had a District Conference. (Which is just like Stake conferences at home. Except, with less people.) It was really good and we had a lot of members come from neighboring cities. I started practicing the piano again. I remember quite a lot. I can play pretty much any song by ear and can still read the music well. I just need to work on my finger work. haha 

Live long and play the piano...
My area is apparently one of the poorest areas in the mission but I love it so much! The people here are soooo nice. Anyways that was my week! I love you all! and I know that this church is true. I watched the restoration video this week and man Joseph Smith is freaking awesome. I know that he was called of God and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God.
So I was drawing someone and it turned out to be Jordan...

(PS Let me know if you have any picture requests)

Love you all,
Elder Davis

Monday, October 17, 2016

October 17, 2016: Smelling "GREAT" in Porto Seguro!

Oi Familia!!

Tudo Bem?! Eu amo o campo. Haha The field is great. Much better than the MTC. Really different though! So yeah I didn´t die last week I just couldn't email. Okay, so I'm gonna start from the beginning as far back as I can remember... It feels like years since the MTC.

So as you guys know, I lost my camera... WHICH SUCKED!  So I talked to Elder Snyder, (an elderly elder that is in charge of things like that...) and he said that it should be fine because I lost it on the bus and that I would see it again that night. But it never came! So every single day from that Wednesday I was praying and checking with the Snyder´s and.... no luck. Friday and Saturday they were all gone so I was pretty much about to accept that it was gone. On Monday I got a hold of Sister Snyder and asked one more time and she hadn't heard anything. So that sucked but she called and left a message with the bus people. So on Tuesday at 3:00 AM we had to wake up and head down to leave the MTC. We were waiting outside the MTC and right before we left in the vans, one of the staff members walked over with a camera asking for an Elder Davis!!! AAAHHHH it was so legit. Definitely a miracle right there. I was very blessed!

How I felt after losing my camera...

So after that we got on a plane and went to Salvador, and let me tell ya, it was soooooo humid!  When I stepped out of the plane... I felt just WET... haha But anyways, we got picked up by the President and his wife, drove to his house, and had a bunch of orientation... And just so you know, I didnt shower Monday night, and I forgot to put deodorant on in the morning, so I STUNK... REALLY REALLY BAD! Anyways we sat and had people lecture us in Portuguese and then went contacting for the first time. It was pretty cool! Then we interviewed with the president and after that he announced companionships. I was with 2 other elders from my district (all the other people who were new were brasileros). So, my new companion is Elder Araújo, he´s brasilero, and he doesn't speak any english. haha 

Me and Elder Araujo

My area was a 16 hr bus ride away..... and I smelled like really bad BO already. Anyways, I hugged people goodbye with my BO soaked body, and I'm so tall that usually peoples noses are right to my armpits... so that's not good... But anyways we went on the bus ride which was pretty long and sucky but I slept a lot. Finally we got to Porto Seguro, and we took a taxi near where our apartment is. This first day was pretty overwhelming... The area in Porto Seguro that we are in charge of is really poor. COMPLETELY different lifestyles than Springville! When we arrived at our apartment I was super surprised... I was like... really?? haha It's a really poor place.. but that's okay. All the houses are made out of this redish brick, sorta like in Mexico. Everyone either makes their own houses or hires a bricklayer so it's not very organized loooking. Ill send some pictures. Our apartment is just the upstairs of a members house. (I don´t have a maid mom. haha Its just us.) The House was suuuupper messy and the bathroom was even worse. I am still trying to find gloves or something to clean it with. But yeah it sucks! 

View from my apartment window!

Anyways after that I went out and met some members and investigators. (And I don't have a lot of time because I was reading everyones emails and forgot that I have to email the mission president too.)  But every single day we just walk around and teach lessons. It's hard because NOBODY here speaks english so I am totally immersed in an only Portuguese area. It's good though, my Portuguese is getting better every day! We have 3 progressing investigators, I dont remember their names... but they have problems with chastity and Word of Wisdom, so we can't baptize them yet. They baptize a lot of people here usually, (we are trying to get at least one a week as a companionship) but this Saturday won't happen. Anyways I'll send you some pics too! I made a voice recording describing things more so I will try to send that next week. I just gotta find a cord.... hahaha alrighty love you guys!! I think about you all the time.


Elder Davis

(Voice Recording of Josh's 1st week in Brazil)

Sunday, October 16, 2016

October 11, 2016: I'm Here!!!!!!

Dear Brother and Sister Davis,

We are happy to inform you of the arrival of your son to the Brazil Salvador South Mission on October 11, 2016.  In words taken from scripture: “We lift up our hearts and rejoice, for the hour of Elder Davis’ mission has come and his tongue shall be loosed, and he shall declare glad tidings of great joy unto the people of Bahia.” 
(D&C 31:3)

We enjoyed spending the day with him. We were impressed with both his physical and spiritual height.  He was helpful and attentive and we feel very blessed to have his talents in our mission.  Attached is a picture of your son with us at the mission home.

Me with Elder and Sister Bangerter

He was assigned to serve in the beautiful and historic city of Porto Seguro which is about 15 hours by bus south of the capital of Salvador.  
Picture from the road!

His companion is Elder Araújo who is from Ceará, Brazil.   You can send packages to his city, however, we recommend for security and cost reasons, that you please send packages to the mission office address which is printed above.

We are grateful for the continual influence of new missionaries with their faith, enthusiasm, and testimony of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. We look forward to serving with Elder Davis .  Thank you for sharing him with us.


President and Sister Bangerter

Friday, October 7, 2016

October 5, 2016: Senioritis is REAL!

What's up guys? 

I'm so excited to leave this place... that sounds bad.. but it kinda sucks after 6 weeks! It's just super repetitive and boring. But it's also cool to be able to learn Portuguese and stuff. So thats good.. hahaa 

General Conference was Awesome!! I loved it. My favorite talk was easily the Alma and Amulek talk during priesthood session by Uchtdorf! Learn from Alma and Amulek Everyone should look it up and read it. Just read it with a purpose! A purpose to learn something new! And look for things to apply in your life! 

I also liked The Plan of Salvation Talk by Uchtdorf. O How Great the Plan of Our God! It was awesome. I think its really true how much we take things for granted. It's just human nature. I think also we take for granted our faith in the gospel and the gift of the Holy Ghost in our lives. Sometimes we tell ourselves that we haven't really ever felt the Holy Ghost but that's because we have it in our lives soooo much when we are doing what we should. And other times, we really just aren't trying to feel the Holy Ghost. I testify, that the Power of the Holy Ghost is real and I know that you all can pray for yourselves to know if it is true too. That's the best way to figure it out. 

Anyways this is the last short email:) Hopefully... I will be out of here next week! Not sure when my P day will be though... But I am super excited to go to the field. It will be super super hard at first but over time it will get better. Also, I will try to send pictures today.... but I just realized when I sat down to email you guys that I lost my camera. It must have fell out of my pocket on the bus ride back or something..... SORRY MOM!  I'm sure I'll be able to find it, so I'm not worried. But I dont know if I will have it by today or whatever:)

Oh something funny this week. The new brazilian elders that got here are on our floor. One of them smells sooooo bad. I don't even understand it!  It's just a really weird aroma that fills up the whole hall! Everytime we get to the floor we walk into the hall and just gag! Haahahah It make no sense how one man can smell that bad so strongly. Hahha But whatever.  It is how it is. 

Also, when we play volleyball every day, we aren't allowed to jump! But it's fine because I can still spike it on everyone just standing so that's pretty awesome...hahahah!   We had proselyting last Saturday too. It was good. (Really quick and easy haha)  So Saturday was a great day! Other than that not much happened. Next time I write I will be in a different area!!! Super Awesome! 

Elder Davis