Hola from Cajamarca,
So this has been, by far and away, the raddest week of my Mission so far. We arrived in Trujillo late at night on December 1, 2015. We were greeted by President and Sister Marler, along with the 2 missionaries that are the Assistants to the President. We loaded up and headed off for the Mission Home. On the way, we stopped for a few minutes at the Trujillo Temple. This is fosh (for sure) my new favorite temple. It’s huge. It looks so beautiful and you can feel the spirit way strong just being near it. Also, I love President and Sister Marler; they are the best and are way nice. We got there late so we had only a short meeting then we all crashed at the Mission Home. The next day we woke up and headed to the Chapel (called the California Stake Center, it must be on California street) for a meeting and information stuff. We had lunch at the Mission Home, which was the best meal I’ve had in a month and a half, then returned back to the Chapel to be assigned our new trainer companions and our areas.
My new training compañion is Elder Dorado and our area assignment is Cajamarca, Atahualpa Ward. Elder Dorado is way great. He is from Bolivia, Sucre and has been serving for about a year. He is way spiritual, way organized, and way funny. I’m stoked to have him and I think we are gonna do way good together. He is a great teacher as well, which is good, ‘cuz I need to learn a lot (LOL). Also, I’m going to teach him English.
As for Cajamarca, my new area, it is the best place in the whole Mission. We took an 8 hour bus ride to get to the actual city. Over the 8 hour bus ride, the ground changed from rocks and dirt to big green mountains. The last 4-5 hours of the bus ride were switch-backs up these huge green mountains. It was so rad to see how these people lived and farmed. They all used the famous Inca method of carving steps into the mountains all up and down to have enough flat area to grow food. Although it was the coolest bus ride of my life, it was also one of the sketchiest. There was always one side of the road that was like a 10,000 foot drop and for whatever reason the bro that was driving loved to put the bus right in the middle, almost completely taking up both lanes. It’s chill though, I’m still alive. Once you get to the top of the mountains there is a big old valley that Cajamarca sits in. They are super into their culture up here and have tons of Inca ruins and other stuff.
It is almost summer here, which means rainy season for Cajamarca. It rains about every day, but usually not for too long. Also, we get hail storms! For example, the other day while we were walking to an appointment it started dumping these “Peanut M&M” size pieces of ice for a solid 30 minutes, then it just stopped and became sunny again. The weather is weird, but I like it. Barely anyone has cars up here and instead the people all just take the “moto-taxis,” which are pretty much just three-wheeled motorcycles with a bench seat in the back and a plastic body/shell to cover everything. There are like a million of the moto-taxis and we use them pretty much every day. Some other things about Cajamarca… There are stray dogs everywhere, and I mean everywhere. The showers here are heated electrically from an add-on on the shower head, which means that if you bump it, or any other part of the main shower, while showering, it electrocutes you. The showers here have no chill. There are a lot of small buildings and lots of dirt-floor shacks. There is a lot of poverty but the people are happy and so am I.
My first full day in Cajamarca we actually got a new apartment and moved. We are now more in the center of our area and right across the street from our new pinchonista. She owns a little cafe and feeds us just about every meal. It was kinda a hectic day but it’s all good now.
The church is pretty strong here and the members are awesome. They have such strong testimonies and truly strive to live like Christ. I love the members and my ward here. They are great and strong in their faith, it’s just that sometimes (actually a lot) they seem to forget about meetings and stuff, but its chill and they are rad.
The missionary work here is great. The people are friendly and easy to talk to (except for the fact that I’m not fluent in Spanish, but it’s chill). We proselyte from 2-8:30ish every day. At the end of each night I’m usually way tired, but I am still just so stoked to go out and serve. I don’t exactly understand how, but I totally love it. “Only good days in Perú!”