The festivals in Manaus, that had music blasting until 3 a.m., have finally come to an end. This past week I had an interesting experience with both my companions. First off, Elder Reis went to get a tooth extracted, but he couldn't handle the anesthesia, so the doctor only started the procedure (gashed the inside of his mouth) and stitched it back up. Elder Murray then got pretty sick. Apparently, he had a bad fever, so that left just me and Elder Reis. Unfortunately, Elder Reis' stitches opened up, limiting his physical activity. Well...there go my companions. In order for us to teach at least some of the people we marked with appointments, it was necessary for me to call a ward member to do divisions. I called good ol' reliable Boby and he came to the rescue and helped last Saturday and Sunday. However...out of nowhere on Sunday, he faints on me and falls to the ground like a dead man for half an hour. It was crazy!!! That essentially ended the week besides a last minute effort by Elder Reis and me to do some street contacts Sunday evening.
In better news...in the midst of all the chaos, we were able to mark baptismal dates for four people, which is always exciting especially for Flores. We have been working lately with the family of a returned missionary, Guillierme, to help them get back in the swing of things. All but his father are members, but they have grown pretty inactive over the years. It looks like this Sunday they will be back...at least some of them.
This week there will be two baptisms, one on Saturday (Marcilene) and the other on Sunday (Cleiciane). One of them is from a street contact made a few months ago (they actually do pay off) and the other is a result of asking, "Who else?" and marking appointments with the new faces you see on Sunday (just so happens to be the sister of a member).
Our ward in Flores has flaked out on us the past few weeks with respect to providing lunch. I don't remember if it was this week or the last, but 4 out of the 7 days lunch fell through. This week we received money twice for lunch and it ended up being pretty nice. There is a place nearby that sells chow mien (the noodle, vegetable, and meat dish) for $5.00 USD. It is a nice change from the usual rice, beans, and chicken.
P-day was pretty cool. For the first time in just about forever, we left staff to go out and do something. We decided with all the hype Ponta Negra (home of the famous Tropical Hotel) was the place to go. At eight in the morning, we got dressed and hopped in the car to go to Ponta Negra. It was a cool drive. Once we got there, I felt as if I was at the beach, but it's just not the same. The water is brown, the sand is filthy, and if you look hard enough, you can see land on the other side (Iranduba). After a stroll on the beach, we headed over to the Tropical Hotel to check it out. I'm not going to lie, it's pretty legit. We had the chance to talk to one of the Cessna pilots that takes people on aerial tours of the Amazon (70 min $350 USD). We also checked out the hotel's zoo, which included several monkeys, birds, a jaguar, and other stuff. There were several Americans there and I enjoyed listening to them try to communicate with the hotel personnel. On both sides, the speech was less than perfect, but it made for a funny experience. In a few of the pictures, you can see a bridge off in the distance being constructed. Just to give you an idea of the progress, they started the bridge when I arrived in Compensa last year.
That's all I've got for this week. This transfer is passing ridiculously fast. After this week, I only have 2 more weeks and I'm out of the escritório. Tchauzão para todos.
Elder Taylor Mackay