Monday, April 25, 2016

Trying New Things

We got to meet our new missionaries on Tuesday.  Elder Olhaiser, Elder Maldonado and Elder Rowley were transfered out and we welcomed Elder Larricilla (serving in Nasca from Mexico), Elder Lucero (serving in Vista Alegre and from Bolivia) and Elder Rosario(serving in Marcona and from Peru).  We'll get some pictures posted of them next month when we have an activity together.

Curt made a trip to Marcona without me this week.  While he was gone, I met up with the sister missionaries and went out with them for while, I bought myself an ice cream cone did a little window shopping and came home early. He got the adventure of going downtown and catching a van.  Sounds like you just buy a spot and when there are enough people to fill the van, they head out.  They don't run the air conditioning and if your seat isn't next to the window, no one else is likely to open it.  It took him about an hour and forty-five minutes to get there.  He was just in time to give a training meeting to some branch leaders and then he had his district pres. meeting. He had his laptop hooked up to a projector and was helping some branch leaders learn to navigate online when the power went out.  The lights finally came back on at the end of district pres. meeting. So, an hour and a half of the three hours he was at the Marcona building, there was no electricity! After the meetings, he had to hurry and get back to the van for a ride home before they shut down for the night. Gosh, he has all the fun!

 These are dehydrated potatoes.  They are called chunos.  They are harvested and then freeze dried out on the ground in the Andes.  From what I understand, they use chuno flour in deserts etc.   A random fact - there are somewhere between 3000-4000 types of potatoes here.  A random opinion - they like their potatoes!

This is Jenny and her mom Luci.  They fixed us the most delicious Peruana meal.  We had causa (mashed potatoes in a pretty mold with like a tuna salad inside), chicken and a noodle with a green sauce (almost like a pesto), the drink was a cold roasted barley-aide? I can't remember the name of the drink. For desert, we had a strawberry whipped gelatin made with an evaporated milk.  It was all very good and we went away very very full!  Jenny lived in the states for years and came home to help when her father passed away.  She is such a blessing to me!  She helps me learn customs and language and lets me talk english too!  They gave us some delicious lemons and mangos from their trees.  Her mother is a dear sweet ambitious lady.  She taught herself Quechuan as a teenager - not an easy language to learn from what I understand.  We learned the word misk'i from her which means yummy!  

Jenny has a lot of family history done and we are trying to help her get it all put online.  I've really struggled with where the accent goes on the word fallacio (which is a polite way of saying passed away).  When I help people with their family history, I am always trying to use this word to find out if the person is living or not and I butcher it every time.  She reminded me I could just use the word muerto for dead but it's a little less gentle.  Finally she said maybe I should just use estiro la pata which is more along the lines of our sayings like kicked the bucket.  I think I'll stick with trying to say fallacio correctly!

One of my dear sweet companion's adventures this week, started out with me sleeping in on Thursday morning.  We always get up early on Thursdays and get to the fair (fruit market) around 7. This week, I slept, Curt went to the gym and we didn't go to the fair until later that morning.  Guess what day he decides to buy fresh fish, onions, peppers and limes and make ceviche?  Yep, after that hunk of fish has been sitting out in the open, he's going to make ceviche out of it.  Of course, Curt can do anything he puts his mind too and it was probably just as tasty as the ceviche we buy in the restaurants in Lima.  He is so adventurous and he is making our mission so much fun.  I love getting to spend this time with him.  BTW - he didn't get sick but just in case - I ate pasta for lunch that day! 

What a cutie!  We've been able to have this little sweetie in our home for visits since she was a couple of weeks old.  She brings her parents every time and tonight she brought her grandma for us to meet.  Maybe you can guess by the picture below - sometimes I forget to listen when she's sitting across from me.  Curt isn't exactly immune to her charm and she really likes to watch him!

Just a little P.S. on today's blog:  Remember a couple of weeks ago, I was writing about being so happy we weren't needing our fan every night?  I don't know how to say it delicately but ... here it is.  One of our neighbors has a dog and another one has a terrible problem with phlegm!  At first we thought he was scrapping a chair across the floor!  These are both right outside our bedroom window. -  We have decided we love our fan!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Spending Time in Lima

Spending Time in Lima

This week was super busy! Monday we had six young missionaries at our house to do their weekly emails and then spend some time relaxing and enjoying time together before they had transfers this week. Some of the relaxing time was spent playing a game of steady hands. Flour is packed into a bowl with a coin on the bottom, then turned onto a plate, two people take turns cutting the sides of the flour until the flour collapses and the coin falls. the loser then gets to retrieve the coin by mouth. As you can imagine this was not my forte. I got to eat several mouth fulls of flour. Eventually we all did:).

 Wednesday we left for Lima. Along the way I took some landscape photos for perspective. Every 20 or 30 miles we would cross a river valley and there is where the crops are grown. If the river water can't be redirected to the field it won't get water. They have quite the elaborate canal/ditch system that supplies ALL irrigation water. I haven't seen a pump for the trees or produce yet.  The grapes are irrigated by pumps and a drip system. That's for another post. But as you can see it is super baren except in the river bottoms. The tree in the foreground is watered by a the highway department via a large tanker truck. It's amazing the effort that goes into getting things to grow here.
 After the usual 8 hour bus ride, then a 30 minute cab to our hotel I find out that we were at the wrong Casa Andina hotel. There are 3 of them in Miraflores (Lima). So we catch another cab for the 8 blocks (20 minutes) in traffic to the correct hotel. The reward... a hot shower and air conditioning. That alone was almost worth the nine hour trip. Thursday was spent in some super good training meeting and followed up  with dinner with the McGinns and a senior couple that are working in Canete (Myers) then a trip to Wongs. A huge supermarket. It was probably the size of Safeway but it seemed like a Supercenter to us.
Friday we met up with the McGinns and the Myers and went to Barranco. This is still in the down town part of Lima. Where we visited the "Bridge of Sighs". Here it is promised that if you hold hands and hold your breath as you cross the bridge your love will last for ever. So Joyce and I did it. I am glad to report it seems to be working cause I love her more and more each day.

We also went to a museum of electricity where I got to pedal a bicycle to generate electricity to turn on some lights. Riding the bike ranked right up there with the hot shower and air conditioning.

Then it was off to the Rustica restaurant for lunch. I felt compelled to sit by these fine fellows for a quick vote. I'm not sure what they voted for I but my vote was for Ceviche and lots of it. The ceviche consisted of sea bass and octopus mostly. It was very good. I hope to go back there many more times.

That afternoon we headed back to Nasca. At about 11:30pm the bus had a flat tire. About two hours later, as the drivers and the crew were finishing up the tire change, someone leaned a steel bar against a window and broke it. So it was taped up before we finished the drive home.
Saturday we helped a family start their genealogy research and attended a baptism at the chapel. Sunday evening we had the youth come from Vista Alegre to do some indexing.

It was a good week. We had lots of adventures. We met some very interesting people. Thanks for reading.

Sunday, April 10, 2016


Oh, happy days!  It's starting to cool down.  We've actually slept without the fan on all night TWICE this week!  AAAAH such a wonderful feeling! We got to go with Elder Olhaiser and Elder Elton to family home evening at the Ventura's home with some wonderful investigators. We really have some wonderful missionaries here in Nasca and we enjoy getting to spend time with them! They are a great example to us of Christlike service and love.

The United States has some stiff competition with the craziness of elections this year.  All along the roadways they have painted the walls as campaign posters. There are signs plastered on walls, electric poles, posters all over the place and fliers everywhere.  They use the little kids to help them with their campaign.  We saw a group of little kids in the plaza one day and we're thinking  "school group", nope, "campaign rally"!
One gal was telling us that she doesn't vote here, she goes where she has a relative running for mayor and votes there, another lady we talked to makes the 8 hour bus ride to Lima to vote there.

They are no meetings today just to be on the safe side and we have to be inside early.


Yesterday we had been asked to help with a primary activity.  They wanted us to find a video that was about 20 minutes long and on the topic of reverence.  After literally hours of looking on the internet, we finally found a fun little video that hopefully got the point across.  Then after the program we had some cake to celebrate the birthday of three of these cute little guys.  They went to sing happy birthday and I told Curt, "I don't know how to sing that" - well, they sing it in english so I didn't mess that up too badly. We are loving it here and it's absolutely life worth remembering!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Cahauchi Temple Ruins

Monday April 4, 2016

Joyce and I along with 10 of the young missionaries went to see the Cauhuachi Temple ruins. We all loaded in to a SMALL minivan at 1:30pm. The AC was on for about 10 minutes then, no more AC.

After about an hour (17 miles) on a dirt road we  arrived at the ruins.
The place is just amazing in many ways. First, how did a civilization survive in this harsh environment.

Second, why all the effort to build such a magnificent structure where it was surely a struggle to simply survive.

Third, how did the structure that is made of the local soil, turned into adobe, last for 2000 years.

In trees in the background there is water. They would carry the water in large ceramic containers
and pour it into these underground cisterns located all around the temple.
It was amazing to see that they could grow cotton down in an old river bed

that only ran when there was a big enough rain 40 or 50 miles away to make it run. I guess I wasn't all too surprised to see Bermuda grass on the edge of the fields. :)

There were pottery shards everywhere. Some pieces were very thin some were a half inch thick and seemed like they came from  very large pots or bowls.

Up near the top it was super windy but down low there was no wind at all. It's no wonder the place is covered in sand after being abandoned for over 1000 years.

 The locals say that the exploration team ran out of money several years ago, if work doesn't begin again soon much of what is now visible will be re-covered in sand.

Imagine all 12 of us, plus the driver, in a mini-van.
We had a great afternoon. We are glad we got to go. Here is wiki take on the place.

Monday, April 4, 2016

A Little Service

Service is a great way to get to know the people and it keeps us busy!  Curt was able to go out this week with the Elders and clean some trees for a lady (no pics) While Curt was out with the Elders one evening, he found out Gloria was needing to get her motorcycle shop moved out of the building they were in and she could use some help.  We finally caught up with her and were able to set up a time. We got there a little early so we relaxed under a shady tree and enjoyed the sights.

 The paint here comes in a bag and it's a paste.  Ronald is having to mix it with water as it's used.
We are washing the off the paint that got on the baseboards.
                          Curt's taking a moment to chat before he gets back to work.

A selfie after the work is done.
                Walking in a different area this week we came across this prickly pear cactus field.  They sell the fruit (tunas) in town.
We enjoyed watching conference this weekend.  It's awesome that there will be another temple here in Lima Peru!  How grateful we are for the reminder that we have a loving Heavenly Father who loves each of us individually.  That there is strength in our Savior Jesus Christ when we don't have it in ourselves and we should never give up.  It is our choice, He never forces us.  "Choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong"