Back from Missions

13 January 2006
5:52 PM

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Today I got back from my missions trip with Saint George to Southern Chile. It was a good experience. Among our associate group, “good experience” is code for “good, but tough.” And tough it was at times. I was part of a group without native English speakers, which was helpful with the learning process. At other times, I was completely confounded by the Chilean accent. Even with three years of high school Spanish, two years in college, and almost four months of intensive study in Bolivia, I sometimes didn’t understand a single word that people said to me. Chilean Spanish is spoken much faster and with many more slang expressions than Bolivian Spanish. Sometimes I longed to sound as intelligent as a 10-year-old.

The time we were gone was also the longest that I have gone without using a computer, the Internet, or even a phone in at least a decade. I suppose I should be thankful for the opportunity not to be “tied down” by burdensome electronics. In reality, I felt disconnected. But, lest you think I am all pessimism, I maintain that I did really have an enjoyable trip and will tell you about it in the coming days. There’s a lot to say and I can’t write it all until I take a shower, my clothes out of my backpack, and some time to think.


Hey Ryan, it was good to catch up a bit on what you’ve been doing! We’re all well and cozy here in Tucson. It sounds like you’ve been having quite an adventure. Thanks for your blog and for sharing! We send you our love…Mary, Jim, Erica, and Jessie Von Dog.

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