Yeah! Travel plans! She's finally going to break out of the MTC! She survived it! Fun... and a little scary!
This week was a CRAZY one, and there´s no slowing down now! A few highlights:
So, I have this shower caddy, and instead of taking it dripping wet into my dormitory to rot the carpet after I get out of the shower, I usually hang it on one of the handy-dandy hooks in the bathroom until it's dry (or until my next shower, because I usually forget that I left it there). Every couple of weeks when they clean the bathrooms they empty off all the hooks into the lost and found, but then I just go get it and everyting is peaches and cream again. So one day I grab my shower caddy off its hook and hop in the shower and after I'm soaking wet and my hair is lathered up with shampoo, I come to the realization that both my bottles of face wash and my body wash are MISSING from my shower caddy. This is very strange, because they didn't clean the hooks into the lost and found anytime since I'd last used it, and it's PRETTY obvious (I would think) that those things belong to somebody, seeing as they are neatly packed inside a container that doesn't have a "FREE STUFF" sign taped to it. So anyway, I had only shampoo with which to wash myself that day, which wasn't too awesome. So I check the lost and found, the free box, all the empty showers, and my stuff is NOWHERE. Well, the next day I recovered one bottle of face wash, but mysteriously nothing else. So I picked up a new bottle of body wash from the bookstore and last P-day I went in to shower and THERE WAS MY STUFF! But only it was being used by SOMEONE ELSE! (There are these like shelves on top of the shower heads, so if you are tall enough to keep your shampoo there while you are showering, everyone can see which products you are using.) I didn't really know what to do. The MTC doesn't really seem like the place to accuse someone of stealing your stuff, but then again, the MTC doesn't really seem like the place where your stuff should get STOLEN! I waited a few minutes to see if she would come out. I thought maybe I could ask her if she'd found it in the free box or the lost and found and explain that mine had gone missing, but it just seemed so awkward. And she was taking a really long time tp shower. So eventually I just got in the shower with my new bodywash and never did find out who the mysterious soap thief was. I was going to leave most of my shower products behind anyway, to minimize the weight in my suitcases, but sometimes I really miss my minty face wash. Especially after gym. Sigh.... Moral of the story is - don't leave your soap out or someone will steal it, even at the MTC!
Wednesday, as you all know, was Halloween, and as it is one of my favorite holidays I was sad to be missing it this year. BUT our elders did a really good job of wearing "costumes" and it really brightened my day. Elder Kunz wore my Harry Potter tie (thanks for sending it, Mom, it came just in time!) and he carried around a wooden dowel (he said he found it in his closet - it appeared to be the cross-bar from a wooden hanger) and drew a scar on his forehead. Elder Morgan wore a Slytherin-ish colored tie and also carried a broken hanger rod around and used it as a wand. Elder Kunz kept slipping his up his jacket sleeve and trying to pull it on people unawares. He "stupfied" our teacher and he and Elder Morgan would have silent duels from their desks across the room. Elder Anderson hiked up his pants and parted his hair down the middle and went as a nerd. Elder Stephens, who everyone thinks looks just like Russell from "UP," tied together two exercise bands (which come in our missionary health guides) and Elder Morgan pinned a little blue ribbon to it and he wore it like a scouting sash and carried around a backpack with a little American flag and stuff sticking out the back, it was so great. Elder Shumway went alternately as a vampire and as another elder from our zone, Elder Parry, who never buttons his top button and speaks in this really low voice that Elder Shumway is perfect at imitating. And in the cafeteria at breakfast he was just walking around wearing vampire teeth and carrying a glass of cranberry juice. It's hard to explain why, but it was quite funny. Maybe you had to be there, though. Anyway, I got a picture of them (Elder Archibald is the one in the back sans costume, but he is waving Elder Stephens's pumpkin flashlight), and then one with myself (I went pretty incognito since I couldn't have a tie, but in my heart I was Hermione) and the two "wizard" elders. My "wand" in the photo is really just a pen, but don't I pull it off?
On Thursday, the MOST EXCITING THING HAPPENED. (Drumroll please...) We got our TRAVEL PLANS!!!!!!! We are flying out next Monday, November 12, and we have to leave the MTC at 5 AM!!!!!! So, this is the last email you will be getting from me in the MTC - isn't that crazy! We are so excited. But I am also really quite terrified. When it comes right down to it, moving to South America doesn't seem like such a good idea after all.... But I know that this is what the Lord wants me to do and I pray that He will help me to not be too scared and to adjust quickly to "real" mission life. Packing and getting everything ready is going to be INSANE this week! I can't imagine how we are going to get everything done! But I know that we will.
Anyway, the time has come again for me to bid you all farewell for another week. BUT, I am NOT going to sign off without leaving you with a commitment (because this is what missionaries do). Are you ready? Here it is:
Will you commit to reading the Book of Mormon DAILY? I don't care if it is one page, one chapter, one verse, one line, one book, or one minute, but PLEASE DO IT! (Even if you have never read the Book of Mormon before in your LIFE!) Here is my promise: If you do this, you will find that you will do BETTER at work/school, you will find that you have BETTER RELATIONSHIPS with your family and friends, and you will be SO MUCH HAPPIER! I know these things are true, because this is what happens to my life when I consistenly read in the Book of Mormon. It is my FAVORITE book (even more favorite than Harry Potter), and I want EVERYONE WHO READS THIS BLOG to find the same HAPPINESS from reading it that I do. If you need a copy, just visit mormon.org. You can order one FOR FREE or READ ONLINE. There are even FREE apps for your smartphones/iPhones so you can take it with you EVERYWHERE YOU GO!
I love you all and hope you are happy and well. We are praying for those who have been affected by that devastating storm in the East (I know that's a week late, but we are slow to hear about these things around here) and hope that they are able to get back on their feet soon. Keep your commitment to read the Book of Mormon. Know that the Lord loves you and that I LOVE YOU!
Lovelovelovelovelove for the LAST TIME from the MTC,
Hermana "Herman" Burgess
P.S. If you are planning to write or send packages this week (thank you Mom Cannon, by the way, for the card and treats last week!), the LAST TIME I will get mail is Saturday morning, so I'd aim for Friday. :) But if you'd rather send them on to Chile, you can reach me here:
Sister Jordanne Niccole Burgess
Chile Concepcion Mission
O´Higgins 940, Oficina 502
Pouch mail items are sent weekly on Fridays from Church headquarters in Salt Lake and are held for the following week if the letter misses the deadline. ONLY postcards or one-page correspondences (no envelopes) written on one side of the page may be sent through the pouch. Notebook or other lightweight paper will not process through the USPS machines. Photographs are not acceptable. Letter folding instructions: Lay the letter blank side down. Fold the bottom of the letter about one-third of the way up the page and crease. Fold the top of the letter to the bottom of the first fold and crease. Secure the long side with two pieces of tape about one inch in from each end, but do not seal the ends. In the top left corner write your name and complete return address. Affix first class postage in the top right corner. In the middle write the missionary address as follows:
Sister Jordanne Niccole Burgess
Chile Concepcion Mission
Salt Lake City, UT 84310-0150
You can also send POUCH for free through DearElder.com, so if you have been DearElder-ing me, that's a great way to do it! I am excited to write to you all next from CHILE!!!!