Monday, June 6, 2011

Fw: Greetings

Kamuschta po.  :D
Nice to hear that the spring concert went well.  I wish I could've been there, it sounds like it was a lot of fun.  GOOD JOB, EVERYONE!!!  :D
...It seems weird that this is Richelle's last full week of high school...  Like, not only is that weird in that she's graduating now (and will probably be moving ahead to college before I do...), but it's also weird because here, today is the first day of the school year.  ^^''  Summer here starts in March and ends in June, so that's when their vacation is, too.  They've been out of school for about three months now.
We had interviews with President Howard this week, which went well, as usual.  All he told me is that I'll probably be getting a new companion this next transfer.  I don't know who.  It's also uncertain whether I'll be transferring or staying.  He didn't say anything about that.  So now, I just have to finish out this transfer strong and see what happens.
What's also weird is that after this one is over, I'll only have five transfers left in the mission.  o.o  The Sister missionaries in my MTC batch are going home at the end of this transfer (it was supposed to be next transfer, but there was a problem with their visas).  That's not a lot of transfers left.  Today is my 17-month mark.  7 months na lang.
This Saturday is Jobelle's baptism.  She was interviewed last Saturday, and her dad signed the permission form, so everything is all squared away.  The Tagalog term is "Dire-diretso na."  She's real excited for it.  She's honestly got a bit of a weird personality, but she's cool, and she has a strong testimony.  She probably understands the gospel better than most of the youth in our ward.  We tried to invite her dad to the baptism, but he declined.  I want to be able to teach that whole family, but they're... pretty well uninterested.  Tatay says he wants to see what changes occur with Jobelle before he even considers listening to us.  He's a nice guy, though.  That whole family actually reminds me a lot of Mexi's family.  The reason we had more success here than with Mexi was the fact that Jobelle could devote a lot more time than Mexi could, since she's already finished with high school, and that Jobelle lives right next to an active member family, the Salamanca family, and thus had someone who could support her.
I came to the conclusion last Tuesday that I can't speak English anymore.  :P  I can still read and write and carry out normal conversations (for the most part) in English (obviously, or else this email would be a bit harder to understand...), but I find myself unable to teach the missionary lessons very well at all in English anymore.  We taught this girl on Tuesday, Franchesca Bulane, the daughter of a returning member.  She was taught mainly to speak English by her parents, so she can speak English and Tagalog, but feels more comfortable in English.  So, when we asked her what language she wanted us to teach in (Please select your language.  Piliin po naman ang gusto ninyong lenguahe), she said English.  I tried.  o.o  I really did.  But I've taught these lessons so many times in Tagalog now, I'm used to it, so it's really hard to switch back over to English.  >.<  So I ended up teaching it in sort of a weird mix, half the sentences coming out in English, half in Tagalog.  ;P  Nag-aalala na ako... Baka hindi na ninyo ako maintindihan pag-uwi ko...  D:
I got your package on Wednesday.  :D  SALAAAAAAMAT!!! :D :D :D  The jelly beans have already been mostly consumed.  Om nom nom....  Addicting little things... ^^''  All of the chocolate melted, but I stuck it in the fridge, so it's more or less solidified now.  The Reese's eggs aren't shaped like eggs anymore, but they're still magically delicious.  :D
I've been giving it quite a bit of thought lately.  First of all, I think I just might start with Winter Semester anyway.  I can talk to President and come home a few weeks early so I can get back in time to go to school.  I decided that if I wait till Spring Semester, the couple of months in between is a long time to sorta hang out on standby.  Two weeks or so would probably be enough time for me to at least readjust.  I figure I'll still be in the missionary hard-working sorta state of mind when I get home, in which I feel like a terrible person if I waste any time.  In those few months, I might be able to find a job, but more likely, I may end up sitting around on Facebook for a good part of the time.... ^^''  I'll still think about it, and I'd like to hear your point of view on it, but I think that's the way I'd like to do it (as an added bonus, I'll be home before Christmas if I do it that way, too.  :D  ).
Also, I was talking with Elder Gillette, sorta asking him for his advice (he also had some influence on the previous decision as well).  He mentioned that, yes, while something in computer science or whatever would probably get me more money, I probably wouldn't be as happy in such a job as I would be doing what I love doing, which is in the music industry.  I'm, of course, concerned about the whole "being able to feed your family" thing that Mr. J was talking about, but I was reading through my patriarchal blessing, pondering the topic.  Regarding my schooling, it states that "You will be able to learn all that you need to learn in order to excel in your chosen profession,"  and that as long as I pay an honest tithe and budget my money thriftily, I will have sufficient for my family's needs and to spare.  The promise of God is that as long as we are faithful, as long as we keep the commandments, especially the law of tithing, God will provide for us.  Also, one of the main focuses here in the mission is on teaching skills.  The Manila Mission isn't really a tracting mission, but a teaching mission.  So even though my teaching skills may or may not have been lacking before my mission, they have certainly improved in the 17 months I've been on my mission.  In reality, a job in music education, whether with a school band or with individual lessons or whatever, wouldn't be so bad.  So, what I was thinking I could do is major in Music Composition, with a minor in Music Education, or something like that, so I have something more solid to fall back on if composition doesn't hold water.
Also, President Howard told me to ask you if you could get a hold of a BYU representative, specifically one from the music department, and ask them if we could get someone here to perform the audition to get into the music department.  For example, President Thomas, President Howard's first councilor, is a BYU graduate, and is a professional opera singer (he's performed at a few of the musical firesides).  Do you think you could get a hold of someone and ask them if that would be possible?
...Of course, a lot of that depends on whether or not my application actually gets accepted at BYU. ^^''  Hope it does.  If not, I'll have to start looking into other colleges.
Anyway, if you could give me some of your thoughts regarding all of this, that would be helpful.  These are just some of the things I'd decided on.
I'm... well over time now... ^^'' That's okay, President Howard gave me some extra time to ask you about those things, so we're good.  Anyway, next week is transfer week, so we'll see what happens to me.  In the meantime, ingat kayo lagi!  :D  Mahal ko kayo!
Elder David Jones

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