It's hard to believe that I've been here almost an entire month! It's so weird because I'll have days where I feel like I've been here for ages and then days like today where I can't believe where the time has gone. I only confuse myself by trying to explain it. Haha. I think it's kindof impossible to describe it.
Having said all of that, everyone is ready to get out to Madagascar. If any of you could be here with us you would be able to sense the angst ( I like that word now) that our district has. But we had a good talk about it on Sunday and we've been doing better about being patient. We have about 10 days and 50+ hours of traveling ahead of us, so our time will be here soon! I seriously can't wait.
So I'll just keep the explanations about the devotionals brief this week. On Sunday we had George Tyler and his wife come and speak. They served in the MTC presidency over in the Philippines. It was awesome because they gave us a virtual tour of the MTC there. It made me a little jealous about not going out to Ghana, but the MTC is a good place to be anywhere you go! Tuesday night we had Elder Evans from the Quorum of the Seventy speak along with his wife. He talked about how nearly a year ago President Monson made the announcement (that long already??) and how there has never been a time quite like this for missionary service. Even though I'm one of the old geezers of the bunch, I'm just so happy to be in this vast army of missionaries! For choir we sang, "Sweet Hour of Prayer". Going into practice I thought to myself, "Great, the most overplayed song in the hymnbook" because in seminary we would sing that almost every day since that was the only one anyone could play. But as we started singing, I really started to understand the meaning behind it all that had just kinda flown over my head all these years. It was so powerful. The chorister shared the story about the composer. He was blind since birth and through reading the scriptures with his family he memorized the entire Bible! Crazy stuff.
MTC life is still going. The reason I say just going is because I don't have anything to complain about, yet not really anything great to say about it either. Except for I get to learn more about the gospel, feel the spirit, and learn Malagasy. That is pretty stinkin awesome! But the MTC itself is just kinda whatevs. Same ol' song and dance. Studying until my brain is fried and then schooling some Indonesian Elders at basketball is what I do. When my threes are falling at least!
The language is still going well. I think I mentioned this last week, but I feel pretty comfortable about the grammar and how everything works. It's just a matter of learning words now. Our teachers have told us that when we get there we're gonna be like, "This is not the Malagasy they taught us at the MTC!" and that it's going to take a good couple months before we'll be more comfortable speaking it. But I'm sure I'll get to that point before I know it! I really hope so at least. We've heard that we'll probably be getting our flight plans tomorrow! Or if not tomorrow, then pretty soon. But I can't wait to get that. Then I can see how long my layovers are and stuff so that we can figure out a time for a phone call! I'm really looking forward to that!!
I guess this will be the paragraph I dedicate to random things. Haha. So first off, our milk lid population is dwindling. We only have about 45 lids, and that was from the first week we started collecting. At the cafeteria they used to have a big fridge stocked full of BYU creamery bottled milk. As soon as we cleared it out there hasn't been any since. Oh well! Now we're just relying on other kind of lids, like Powerade caps. I'm sure we'll survive! As for music, we're not allowed any. Period. So I haven't pulled out my iPod to see what was on it. But I'm sure it's all great! I think I'll test it out once before I go just to make sure it all works and everything.
Anyways, I don't really have anything to talk more about that I can think of. We ended up having some time this morning, so I thought I would just go ahead and get this email out, but I'm still planning on being on later around 2ish. So if you're available feel free to send emails back and forth with me! I'll also get some pictures up and try to respond personally to emails. Until then, I love all of you!! Thanks for all the love and support, I truly am one lucky missionary :)
-Elder Mumford :)
Time for some pictures! To start, this picture is what we do on the computers. It's called TALL (Technology Assisted Language Learning). It looks a little more exciting than it actually is. With this you can kinda see how the language works, completely backwards from English!
How to make an Orange Julius: Fill up a glass about 2/3 of the way full with orange soda. Then take 2 orange dream bars and let it soften in the soda for about 15 minutes. Then mush, mix, and enjoy! Oh the stuff you figure out when you're in the MTC this long ;)
This is the laundry room! Unusually not crowded this time. But yeah, we're lucky enough we don't have to wash our clothes in the rivers here!
Sister Lambert being all focused on his letters home. The reason we call him Sister Lambert is because on the first sacrament meeting someone from the branch presidency accidentally called him that over the pulpit and it's just stuck ever since!
The praying mantis we saw on our way out of the temple today! We went and did initiatories today, so we got out way earlier than usual. It was awesome!
Me and the famous map!
We're all hooked on this stuff! I love Guarana :)