I dont know where to start. The Philippines is crazy and very different from anything I have ever experienced. The plane ride here was very long but we were able to sleep a lot and they fed us pretty good. President Peterson picked us up from the airport and it was only a little over and hour drive to the mission home which is shorter than I though it would be. President Peterson is very nice and gives us a lot of guidance and at times he is in your face and intimidating. One of the Elders from Logan, UT told me hes the way he is because he knows how sacred the work is. Sister Peterson is great though and has a huge job of keeping all the missionaries healthy here because of how much disease and things there are here but she gave us a lot of good tips on how to keep ourselves healthy.
Anyway we ended up spending Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday in the mission home and then had transfer day on Friday. I dont know if you got a picture from the mission home but sister peterson was going to send a picture with me and the presidency I think. I am in Nagsugbu which is about the farthest away you can get from the mission home going west. I took us 5 hours on a bus to get here. My Companion is Elder Viloria he is a Philipino but he speaks a lot of English as do a lot of people here actually everyone knows a little bit. Elder Viloria has only been out for 4 months so we are both very young missionaries. He knows the area well which is hard for me I still havent figured out which way is North ugh ha. Nagsugbu seems so big mainly because of how many people are here. I dont know why everyone is living so close to each other when there is a lot of open space. Along with that there a so many little kids running around. There is actually a lot of everything. Motorcycles! They have these little 150cc motorcycles that they welded a little cart on the side and you pay them to take you around places. For the majority theres mostly motorcycles. But there is another way to travel by Jeepney which are these big monster Suv’s with big bumpers that people load into and there was a bunch of those in San Pablo. IDK but I think Nagsugbu is a a lot poorer of a city than most. The apartment that we live in I was told is one of the nicer ones actually it has two small bedrooms and a kitchen with some desks. All tile floor throughout it. I actually think its very nice after going and teaching others in there homes.
Only one of our lessons so far has been in a dirt floor home. But even if its not dirt floor its still very very small one room usually with a bed and maybe a small closet to change in. Some of these things I dont even know how to explain or describe maybe you can get on google and look at pictures. Also check up on Elder Spezia’s blog im curious to see how his area is and i know he would be much better at describing than I would be. Its almost like when I got here and started trying to speak Tagalog I lost my words for English also I dont know how to speak at all now ha not really but I have found it very hard. When I teach lessons they just look at me and nod and I dont know whether that means I understand or they are just being nice. Here in Nagsugbu there is just one branch but I am really impressed with how much the members do Brother Alkin is 20 years old and on Saturday he went to all of our meetings with us. Also the church buildings here are amazingly nice. Especially cause right on the other side of the wall is a shack. I hope you are all doing well back at home and a already have much more to tell you about the Philippines next week. Keep me in your prayers.
Love Elder Polatis