I bet you're wondering why I didn't send an email home last week...I'm glad to report that it wasn't because I was sick in a hospital. For some reason, the Internet was not working on myldsmail last week, and after several attempts, we finally gave up. Transfers occurred yesterday and Elder Hodges is now in Manacapuru and I have a new American companion, Elder Olsen, from Orem, Utah. I'm not sure what happened yesterday, but Elder Olsen was up all night throwing up, so we stayed indoors much of today so he could rest. We just managed to get out of the house with an hour of P-day remaining to email home. He seems pretty good, though, from what I can tell.
Something ironic happening at this moment is that I'm seated right next to our runaway investigator, who showed up to church on Sunday and said he just wanted to get baptized to get his parent's attention. I was a little bummed to say the least, especially since that meant we went an entire transfer without a baptism. It appears this next transfer will be pretty good (it's only 5 weeks in length, which happens only once a year). I'm going to do some things differently, which I believe will help more people to progress and eventually accept baptism. Currently, we have a few people who are really standing out above the rest...one of them being Lazaro, who is progressing strongly and is very reliable. The other, of course, is Vanessa, who has already accepted baptism along with Edimar and Maria who seem to be off and on, but it's all good.
Some of the unique events that occurred last week were catching and holding a toucan. It was really neat seeing something so rare up close. The attached picture doesn't do the colors of the bird justice. Finally, last P-day we went to the center for a little tchau party for Elder Portes at an Arab fast food place called Habib's. It was sort of a surreal experience having Arabic food in the middle of the Amazon.
Sorry to have to cut this short, but I've got to go. I'll do a better job of writing next week when I have more time. Hopefully, Elder Olsen isn't still puking next week.
Paz e amor,