Pretty rad week here in Cajamarca once more. Lots of rain and lots of sun. Cajamarca is kinda bipolar when it comes to the weather, but yea it’s all good. I love it.

We had P-Day (preparation day) as a zone this week, which was really fun. We piled into a combis ( like a taxi bus system run by whomever has a car that can fit people) and headed for Otuzco just a bit outside of Cajamarca in the fields. It was like a 30 minute ride in a bus that seats 14 people, but it was filled with a little over 20 people and 1 goat. Otuzco is rad. There are like these Inca burial ruins carved into the mountains that are way cool and like super sacred for the local people. It was where they would place the bones of all the royalty that died in ancient times. When we got there, it was all sunny and hot. But like I said, Cajamarca’s weather is bipolar and within 20 minutes we were in one of the biggest rainstorms we have had here, with no where really to go to stay out of the rain. The entire mountainside turned to mud rushing downward and, yea, we got like wayyyyyyyyyyy soaked, lol. It was classic. Finally one of the natives that lived near there invited the 25+ missionaries into her 15 square foot, 5 foot tall home, to keep out of the rain. After like 30 minutes and 4 stories of the Otuzco Ruins by the lady, the rain slowed down and we headed back down the mountain to eat. When we got down, we found that our empanadas were now cold and soggy empanada soup because of the rain, so yea that kinda sucked. After eating, we went exploring for a grassy field to try to play some fútbol, but all we found was mud, angry farmers, and dogs that thought my ankles were food or something. But, yea, it was way a rad and dank (ahaha, get it, ‘cuz I was soaking wet) experience.

25 foot square home-- 5 feet tall

25 foot square home– 5 feet tall

The hike to the Otzuco Ruins

The hike to the Otzuco Ruins

As for the food this week, I definitely had some new experiences. To start off, I had “Estamago de Cabra” or goat’s stomach. It’s legit, the stomach sack of a goat cut out and cooked in a spicy cream soup thing. It is probably the grosses thing I have ever eaten and all I could think about was that I was putting a stomach which was at one point digesting who knows what in my mouth to end up in my stomach to be digested. It was kinda the worst. Someone send me In-n-Out or Baja Fish Tacos.

Also, here in Cajamarca we are getting into the thick of Carnivals which means more random food, more music, more water balloons and more drinking by the locals. It’s way weird cuz some how when we are walking down the street all the drunks seem to know us and come out chasing us saying “SSyelderes.” If someone calls out to the missionaries to come teach them, it probably means they are drunk, lol. But, it’s all good. There are some areas we can’t go to at night during Carnivales, but yea, I am stoked to be here.

As for the Missionary work, it is going great! We had a training broadcast from Salt Lake this week for all the missionaries around the world. It was way good. We got to hear from the Apostles, including Elder Bednar, and got some solid advice. The two main messages I got from it was that; First as Missionaries we can’t convert people, the Holy Ghost is what converts. We are only vessels, but as vessels, we need to do everything we can to bring the Spirit and to bring the people to the “door” which they can open and allow Christ into their lives. Second, that the only way people can really understand and gain a testimony of what we teach is through prayer to our Heavenly Father. You can ask the Missionaries, your local pastor, your parents, websites, whomever, but we are all merely humans and in the end all of us can lie, me included. So then, the only logical thing to do if you want to know if what I am teaching is true, is to ask the only one who can’t lie, God the Father, in the name of Christ, with all the desires of your heart and with faith, if what I am teaching is true, You don’t have to gamble or hope that it’s right, you can know (Moroni 10:3-5). Miss all you guys and also the food back home. I love being a Missionary.

Elder Turner