22 December 2014

Letter 60: J Must be My Destiny?

Mayad nga Aga! 

That means "Good Morning" in Kiniray-a. So Big News: "TRANSFERED" 

So where have I ended up this transfer? Well, a PumpBoat, Jeepney, and a Ceres Bus ride later, and I have ended up in the Province of Antique in San Jose de Buenavista. My third (and hopefully my last) Area. 
Leaving Guimaras
Explanation of the title of this letter? Jaro, Jordan, and San Jose. I'm destined to go to places with a Spanish J. I guess I'm supposed to sound really weird when I get home, by the way. Because I say things like Herusalem and Hordan now. 

So my new companion is Sister Crisanto. She's actually Sister Haun's (my companion from Guimaras) Granddaughter. Which makes her my 2nd cousin once removed? something like that. She's 4.5 months or so into the mission. She's super sweet and we're fairly similar in temperament and humor. 
Sister Crisanto and Sister Smith
My housemates are Sister Haun and Sister Fantone (one of the funniest Sisters Ever). This next transfer is going to be FUNNY :D
Christmas Party! and New Housemates:
Sisters Haun, Crisanto, and Fantone
Also, my house here is the NICEST house EVER. It's SO NICE. We have an OVEN, a separate shower and CR. and a CAN OPENER. It's also just recently built (missionaries moved in 4 weeks ago), so it's just super clean, (nice things here just aren't as nice a few years later. . . ) and it's just the best thing ever. The Zone Leaders also live just next door! 

I actually kinda had some culture shock. There is literally nothing in Guimaras, and there is just SO MUCH here. Like, I was so happy to have a Can Opener. a CAN OPENER. What's going to be my reaction to things back home??

More culture shock: I will never do my laundry by hand ever again because the Sessions (the beloved couple missionaries) are kind enough to let us use their washer and drier. 
How does one use this??
I was super happy on Saturday. I thought I would miss a Christmas Party, but San Jose Branch's was Saturday (just like Jordan's)! The branch here is so FUN. And. There. Are. DEAF. MEMBERS. I love them, they are sooo funny. And they love me, (hahaha) because they don't have to start from the beginning to teach me ASL! They say the way I sign is funny, and all the time it's "In America, you sign this way. But This is the PHILIPPINES. So we sign it this way." It's pretty much the same, but of course there are differences. They are all very patient with me with my constant spelling, and are very good teachers. They teach ASL with a hearing member on Wednesday, and I'm excited to go :) 

Speaking of languages. Here in Antique they speak Kiniray-a (also known as Karay-a. not sure what the difference is) it's very similar to Ilonggo. 

Like. . . if you say it in Ilonggo and then in Karay-a
To me: "Sa akon." is "Kanakon." 
Now: Subong" is  "Kadya" 
Good Morning: "Maayong aga" is "Mayad nga aga"
Here: "Diri" is "Dya"

and a lot of Ls are now Rs. 

Nothing: "Wala" to "Wara" 
To Sleep: "Tulog" to "Turog" 

It's very pretty and I'm getting quite good at rolling my tongue. 

and just things like that. Mostly it's the pronouns that have changed. Really the hardest part is figuring out what language Sister Crisanto is speaking. She came from Kalibo (where they speak Aklanon and Tagalog) and has only been Karay-a for a transfer. Soo... needless to say she's very mixed. (or as I would say: Halo-halo.)

I miss Guimaras. . The Tacdoro Family and the red roads and being in the Mountains. But I'm loving being on the beach and having the views of mountains instead. I'll find out if Edmar, Alma, and Albert really got baptized in a few weeks when Sister Haun brings news back from MLC from Sister Glori. 
Last Night with my Family in Guimaras!
We gave them a small bit of Christmas :)
I thought my last area would be in the city (and after 7 months in the city, I wasn't too keen on going back) but I've ended up in an area that's half city half beach. :D Basically, I'm just super happy and doing great. :) 

By the way. I should be on around 8 am my time on the 26th so that will be around 5pm for you on Christmas. We'll be going on splits (Sister Fantone and Sister Crisanto will call together. and Sister Haun and I will call together) the pinays call on Christmas day, and we call the day after, so that it gets to you on Christmas. Soooooo... Sister Haun get's double time to talk with her family because her parents separated (special permission from President) so. . . that means we get DOUBLE time together this Christmas. I don't know how we're going to talk so long. 

I hope you're all having a wonderful Christmas. I know that this time to remember Christ's birth should just really be year round. He has completed His atonement, and we can once again live with our Father in Heaven and our Families through Him. I've already seen so much Faith in Jesus Christ here, in one investigator, Hernie, who asked for a priesthood blessing before going to Iloilo for a surgery yesterday.

I love you all,
All's well in San Jose, 

and have a Merry CHRISTmas!

Much love, 
Sister Smith 
My New Apo (Granddaughter).
I'm afraid I've forgotten her name.

Remember how I got a new Umbrella?

I figured I should finally take a selfie
from the land of selfies. 
ps. sorry for all the pictures ;)

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