Christmas phone call
Kylee: how do you drink the water in the Philippines?
Rachelle: In our apartment , there is a filter system that takes the water through three containers. When the water has passed through the filters it is OK to drink. However sometimes I just drink the water, without the filter.
Kylee: have you eaten any more pig fat?
Rachelle: (laughs) yes, and worse. They love the fatty parts in the Philippines, in fact for Christmas dinner I was served chicken neck. …it is very fatty.
Kylee: have you seen any sharks?
Rachelle: no, but I have eaten a lot of octopus and squid
Kylee: have you ever been cold? Or are you always hot.
Rachelle I am actually adjusting to the heat. It is cooling down in the evenings and I have actually worn a jacket. I sleep on the floor on mats, no blankets because it is way to hot., but I have started to wear a jacket to bed. I’m sure when I come home in the fall, I will freeze in Utah.
Dad; Tell us about your investigators.
She then tells us about the wonderful families she is teaching. Rachelle gets emotional as she is talking about the people, you can tell she loves them very much.
Grandma: how do you get your mail?
Rachelle: Mail arrives into the mission home in Naga. They it is sometimes passed from missionary, to missionary, until it is given to us. Or when we go into Naga we can pick it up. We will actually be gong to Naga for Christmas because our zone won the cleanest apartments contest. So we got Christmas dinner in the mission home. Because our area is the furthest away, my companion and I also get to sleep in the mission home.
Grandma: How is your Bicol coming?
Rachelle: I can understand pretty much what is being said, but I can not communicate in Bicol. My companion understands and can speak for me.
Mom: Where exactly do you live in Sipocot?
Rachelle: Right by the church, if you google the church, you will be able to see where I live.
Mom: Describe your house.
Rachelle: The kitchen has a propane stove top, kind of like a camping stove, that is where we do all the cooking. We also have a fridge. We are very lucky because hardly anybody has a fridge. The locals also do not use propane, they cook with charcoal brickets, in a little barbeque.
Mom: Do you have a calling in your ward?
Rachelle: No, they like to have all the members have the callings, it keeps them active. We are asked to speak in church a lot. The ward has about ninety members.
Shay: Do you sleep good?
Rachelle: I do. I work so hard all day long, that I am very tired when I get home. I climb up hills and walk through the jungle all day long. It is very tiring.
Shay: Have you ever been afraid?
Rachelle: yes. The area I am in now you have to cross bridges that are made of a thin bamboo and a rope to hold onto. You walk across the bamboo, holding onto the rope, it can be a long drop if you fall. I always get a little afraid when crossing. I guess it is a fear of heights.
Shay: Have you seen any weird animals?
Rachelle: In our washroom, we have a lizard living there that is as big as my forearm. It is called a Taco, Taco because early in the morning the lizard makes this taco, taco sound. I am told if the taco lizard jumps on you , the suction grip on their limbs is so strong, if you pull them off you will also take off your skin. There is also a large spider living in the washroom. It is as big as my hand. When I wash my clothes, I keep a close eye on both of them. There are also wild dogs everywhere. They are the ugliest dogs I have ever seen.
Shay Is there any candy?
Rachelle: they actually have quite a bit on junk food in the Philippines.
Cory and Rachelle get to talk for a few minutes and catch up on what their friends are doing. then……CLICK the line goes dead! We try and try to reconnect but no use. Do you think we can get a “do over”?
So nice to hear Rachelle, she sounded happy, and loving what she is doing. We missed her this Christmas, but also knew she was where she is suppose to be.