Monday, January 27, 2014

How to Eat Fried Hormigas!

Well I really am getting settled in, here in good ol Bucaramanga. It`s a great place to be a missionary, and I just love it! It`s cool because I`ve felt like every area, although very different, has progressively gotten better. And I have been able to get into the groove faster and faster in each one. When one is in the groove, it means that you are having fun, working hard, and the time is passing by fast. When time goes by slow that is when you are not in the groove and still getting used to things. This week was a better week:) there are still the daily challenges like always but those are just normal now.  One thing that I really like about Bucaramanga is that the city really loves it`s citizens. It`s always clean, there’s not much violence and it`s beautiful!! There are tons of parks and palm trees, and my personal favorite is that there are these work out parks open to the public. They have all kinds of work out machines with these cement cylindars as weights and everything is cemented into the ground. So we are taking advantage and waking up at 6:15 to make it over there at6;30 6.40 to  have a good 40 minute workout in the mornings. I made my workout sheet again and we are going Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, alternating legs and arms. It has been kind of a wake up call for me because I got on the bench press and started to try to press 3 stones on each side, my mind was usedto  what I was able to bench so when I started I pushed the bar up a couple of inches and my mind said yeah you can do about 6 reps, but NO! I wasn`t even able to get the bar up all the way!!! Then a guy on my side said, `you might need to take one off there white guy` what a shame..... but nonetheless I took one stone off each side and did my reps. So theres a little work to do lol, hopefully I`m here a while;) 
SO I sent you guys a picture of me and E`perez with our kids, but forgot to tell you guys in the last letter that he is my district leader. It was so good to see him again and we have spent the last 2 p-days together with our kids. His kid  is from Eugene, yeah Eugene Oregon, but his parents are guatemalans so he speaks fluently in both english and spanish. Perez always tells stories of our time together in Suba in the district meetings.  He is going home this change so I will try to take advantage of the time we have until he goes. Mom I think that all the missionaries that are leaving always are home on that same Friday, but thats all I really know. 
SOOOOO you might want to know what hormiga means....or maybe you already know, but its ant. Yeahhhh welll Shay said that Melinda had told you guys a little bit about the delicacy here in Santander (the department, or state I`m in) so yup they are these montrous ants that only come out of the ground once a year around may. But these things are WHOPPERS! On top of being extra grande they are quite pricy as well. So we came along the little setup in the street and I asked how much the fried ants cost. The lady says, well we have bags of 2mil, 5mil, 10mil and 20mil. I picked up a good size bag and said give me this one, it`s 2mil right. No thats the one of 20!! haha then I saw a huge bag and asked well if this is the one of 20 how much is that big honker. She responded 140mil!! about 75 or 80 dollars!!! WOW, big money huh. So I bought one of 2 mil with about 10 ants in it(those are the most expenisve ants I`ve ever heard of!) and walked off with a big smile on my face! I was super stoked to eat fried hormigas!! So we get to the house that night and come to the conclusion that we need to make a video. So my comp gets his camera out (mine was out of battery) and we make a video of us both trying the very first ant in our lives. YEAHH well lets just say I`m glad I didn`t buy the bag of 140 (i wass thinking about it;) those nasty little buggers just taste like pure charcoal.  At first it was like a little salt and oily taste but afterwards, just pure charcoal. So I haven’t eaten another one. Also I left the bag out and the next morning it was full of the normal sized ants, who knew ants were cannibals? haha I`ll send you a few pics just to show you the size of the buggers, they`re about the width of your 2 fingers put together.
SO mom you can put all the MHS and BYU shirts on the quilt, whatever you think is best, and Dad I have tried to do most all of the things that you gave me as advice. Well first off I still don`t know who is the ward mission leader, we called him and scheduled a meeting in the church at 5,30 but he didn`t show, so at 6 we left to go to a lesson. The bishop however is really great, but I feel like he is just weighed down by his calling and feels like he has to do everything, so he doesn`t really do a whole lot either. But we were able to talk to him, and here in the mission we have started to rescue people that have been less active since last August. I know this stuff like the back of my hand because we had to give tons of training meetings to the missionaries and the members in Bogota, so we are working to have our 15 names that we are supposed to have. Also we have a meeting with the 1st counselor who is in charge of the ward mission leader and the missionary work in the ward to see if we can make some headway with him. But I`ll let you know how it goes. We did however use that tactic of `in what can we help you with` with the bishop and it worked.  He told us that he had asked the hermanas to go to the city office building and ask for a map of the area and how much it would cost. But they hadn`t done it yet, well the next day we went and got that all taken care of and returned and reported on Sunday. Hopefully we gained some points there:) 
So I bought a sick Bucaramanga jersey today in the center, yeah I was thinking about the version with the beer logo on the front but I decided against it;) ) Love you guys!!! I also bought a Colombian sombrero!!1 Finally I found a cheap one:) LES AMO!!! BENDICIONES!!!
-Elder Crook 

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