21 September 2016
Dear Mom, I saw the full moon a few days ago and realized then that it actually wasn’t only yesterday that it was a sliver. Some days it’s difficult not to feel so confused and frustrated about how little I really understand when it comes to time passing. SLOW, FAST, SLOW, FAST, FORWARDS, BACKWARDS, AND DIAGONALLY all at once. What feels like ages ago also feels like yesterday.
We met a guy named David. He lives on a street called Burns Place, same as the Pages and Eyres and Ganialongos. They call him Dr. Bockbock (like the chicken sound) because he always fixes up the neighborhood chickens when they are hurt. He is one of the first people I met upon coming to Makawao that helped me gain confidence that these are my kind of people living here in upcountry after all. We talked with him for far too long and I think I may have mentioned something like this before but it was pretty conflicting for me, how much I enjoyed the conversation. Like I expressed in the letter to Papa, loving people often comes in the form of listening to them, but as a missionary it is a fine line between building a productive relationship of trust and just talking story. I always hope and believe it forms into the first of those options but with David I had a feeling it was not going to develop in that direction. Hence the halfway guilt I felt. He is a very gifted and intelligent man well-spoken and free thinking but not off-the-wall kind. He’s very familiar with missionaries, especially the Jehovah’s Witness kind. In fact he’s studied quite in depth the doctrines of their church. Which he understands to be fairly absurd, in the kindest and most civil of ways. The JW’s take excessively detailed notes he told us and one of those notes is never to knock on his door. Anyway, he offered us great tracting advice which I have on occasion put to use and he mentioned many other great and interesting things. One of them being, “You will love the Eyres, in fact you look like Aja.”
The Eyres were living abroad in Spain with their five kids (Anna, Camden, Elsie, Poem, Ezra) for a year and a half and were set to return a few weeks after we met David. They have been back now for a while and he was right. I totally love them. They are my kind, our kind, 100%. It’s pretty funny though when I first met Sister Eyre I didn’t think that she and I really looked alike; however, you mom, and Sister Eyre do. It’s amazing to me the resemblance not just in looks but also in personality and demeanor and even teaching methods in Relief Society. It is uncanny and I love it so much. It took a few weeks after their return for us to finally get over to their home for dinner. Until that time honestly I was a little bit intimidated by them. I know that was a ridiculous thing to feel, but they were just so awesome (#goals) in every sense of the word. Five minutes in their home and I knew once again that GOD chose Makawao for me and not the other way around. She was rolling out tortillas Mom–half whole wheat that she’d ground up in her blender. I was so happy to be there! Not to mention how completely comforting it was to know I still have all my rolling pin maneuvering skills . . . . The guacamole, too.
It is so crazy all the similarities, Mom! Just another random one: She was standing in Relief Society and after she had made one comment she added, “I’m not standing because I think I’m teaching the lesson or anything. It’s just that I have a bad neck and sitting makes it worse!” She told me later about the numbness in her arms a few months ago . . . believe it. You and Aja will for sure be friends. I invited them to come huckleberry picking with us next year. I guess they come through Idaho every summer around that time. They have family in Nevada and Utah, maybe Idaho, too. Sister Eyre said Soda Springs is her favorite!
I’ve been praying a lot about what it is I need to study and pursue, and I’m feeling that perhaps the Lyres are the beginning of answers to my prayers. Sister Eyre asked over dinner what I am planning to pursue and I said, “Welllllll . . .” So I told her what I WAS doing and my unsurety at the present time. How I’m basically interested in the entire universe and how it functions along with all of the people who inhabit it. How one of my favorite things to write home about is simply, stories of the people we meet and what I learn from them. And then she told me, “Well you’re basically already a cultural anthropologist.” Which I later learned is exactly what she and Brother Eyre graduated in. So I asked what career paths that typically opened up. She is a free-lance editor (editing being another one of my dreams) and Brother Eyre, who used to be a small business owner and originally was majoring in Natural Resources, now “collects weird friends and learns stuff from them.” I told her I’m calling as soon as I get home from the mission. I really know they are heaven sent. God’s timing is everything. I still don’t know what I want to study. Sorry. Anthropology, linguistics, geography, geophysics, astrophysics. Every time I open up the dictionary to find a church word the science stuff just shows up. Choices have never been my thing. That’s why I’m grateful I have you. I’m sure you’ll help me figure it out. 😉
p.s. It’s been cold all week and all I’ve wanted to do is sing Christmas songs.
p.p.s. Sister Eyre said David asked her why we never go back to visit him anymore. You know how he prides himself in scaring off the missionaries and all. But she also said that this time it was a little more suspicious, and feels he want us to come back. Hmmm. We’ll have to see!
- Sister Biggs sent me a harmonica!
- I have too much stationary.
- Alfred came to church again! Finally.
- I kept praying that the weather would allow us to go on our morning runs. MIRACLES. We arrive home and two minutes later it pours.
- The gecko ate the cane spider.
- The moth that flew down my shirt and stayed there until we got into the car–tell Echo we share phobias now.
Editor’s note – Finally an identity on the type of spider! Also, please note this is a handwritten letter I received last month. Aubrey is still with Sister Modolon in the letter.