Friday, March 15, 2013

Ben is back!!!

Ben arrived at the Salt Lake Airport at 10:12 am this morning, along with Elder Hauver and Hermana Johanson.  His Uncle J showed up and surprised us all.  He was released by President Droubay at 12:30 pm.  Ben has a thick Chilean accent and keeps saying things in Spanish.  He said it feels very different without the missionary name tag on.  His clothes are pretty worn and everything smells like a camp fire.  He said it’s strange being just Ben again.  He has some parasite meds he has to take today and tomorrow as a precaution.  He also has to get a TB test.

His trip home was long and tiring.  On the 13th, he had a two hour bus ride to the mission home in the morning.  Around 9 pm, after spending the day at the mission home, they took all of the departing missionaries to the bus station for an 11 hour overnight bus trip to Santiago.  At 8:10 pm on the 14th, he had a 10 hour flight to Atlanta.  After a two hour layover, he had a 4 hour flight to Salt Lake.  We are so glad to have him home. 

He reports to the Stake High Council on Sunday at 7:30 am.  His homecoming talk is on March 24th at 10:50 am.  

airport 3

Kayleigh’s welcome home banner and a photobomber

airport 2

Silas and Kayleigh greeting their brother

airport 1

Greeting mom and dad

airport 4

Uncle J showed up and surprised us all

Monday, March 11, 2013

The end of these two years has knocked on the door…


Well the time has finally come. The end of these two years has knocked on the door and in 2 days I will be heading home. I attached the most recent copy of my flight stuff but it looks like nothing has changed. My next Sunday will be in Utah! How strange... I have many stories for you all and I am excited to see you all. I have been so nervous and each day I grow more anxious about the things that will now have to happen. I will have to show you my scar from my operation! That last time I was there I didn´t have it. Everyone here wants my number and email and stuff to be able to talk to them. Hermana Rappleye called me the other day for tech support and jokingly said, "You´ll have to leave your number and address for when we need tech support". My companion was on edge yesterday and he said, "Elder I don´t want you to go." It’s not hard to say goodbye, but yet it’s sad. So many memories here in Chile and so many friends have I made. I hope to stay in touch with many of them.

That's so cool that he has his test the same day I get back! I have been sent on a mission for a family of investigators here. They asked me if I could take some stuff home for me for their sister that lives in Utah. She is in Eagle Mountain. I talked to her by Skype yesterday. I will be driving down to their place to drop off the stuff. I will probably go Saturday or something like that. We can take a trip down there maybe to meet a Chilean lady!

The biggest fear I have about coming home is stopping all the good things I now do. Like for example...getting up early, reading my scriptures, praying lots, and other things. I am making plans on how to keep myself going on this stuff. Like, buying the institute study guide for the Book of Mormon and other stuff like that. It’s funny how now, I don´t worry about giving a talk or going to church. I worry about the stuff like what to study in the scriptures when I get home, or what to pray for. As for Kayleigh and Silas, you should tell them not to worry. Unlike most missionaries, I won´t judge any of you for the stuff you do. I have learned that judging and criticizing is the worst way to help people progress. The way to help people is by inviting them to come up to the good things. Like putting together a family home evening, or inviting them to read with me. Haha, just relax! I love you all so much. We are going to have a blast!!! I will speak all day in Spanish to you all and you won´t understand anything! MUHAHAHAHAHAHA!

I am going to leave lots of clothing here because most of it is old and too big for me. I lost a lot of weight...I have to just keep the weight off! I am thinking about buying some small gifts and then buying some Chilean candy so you can try it.  It should be cool.
See you in a few days.


Elder Burge

Monday, March 4, 2013

It has been bittersweet…I am more Chilean than the beans…

KAYKAY YOU CHANGED YOUR HAIR! I didn´t know who it was until I zoomed in. You look more like mom now! It has been bittersweet. Last night my companion and I cried like little girls. I am stressed out about knowing if I have done all that I could have...and he made me cry. Then he cried as he started telling me about all the things that I have done for the people. Then that made me cry again! Then we took all the numbers for the zone and went to bed. It’s a lot tougher than I thought. It’s my last week...and no one knows it really.

Like you have heard me say body is dying.  I can know tell you I am experienced in having tendinitis. I have it in both my feet. I hurts to walk...and sometimes it just hurts. I just had deja vu. I have had a lot of that recently. Mom, don´t worry. I will be able to rest my feet when I get home. The doctor said it’s the only thing I need to do for it to heal up. So, in one week from now I will rest. I don´t know if I told you this before...but about a week ago I saw a doctor lady who was looking at all the feet of the missionaries and she looked at mine and told me, these are feet of a great missionary. I asked her why and she said...because they are very, very callused feet. She then took a knife and cut them off. Crazy cool!

I am ready to paint the room! Pick a good color, save some newspapers and lets go! Then we can chop like a meter of wood! Haha, it would be cool. Just to let you know I have lost weight and I will be happy to show all my carnets and the weight loss in the mission.
Crudos...are actually good and I didn´t get sick! LOOK AT THAT! Something that is horribly gross to look at and think about that is good and safe! Speaking about food...taco soup would be cool to eat. I honestly will just be happy to be eating moms food again! I want to try to lose a bit more weight, so if you want you can make salad and I will show you just how well I can now eat it. CHOU NO MAS with resting! I have 14 hours in a plane to rest...I will be hanging out with you all instead. I have learned how to sleep in buses (airplanes included)!!

I am so arms are so burnt that I look just down right dumb when I have shorts on. I am so white and my arms and head so brown! Sometimes they ask me what part of Chile I am from! I am more Chilean than the beans! (Classic Chilean phrase)
I don´t feel like I have changed at all to be honest. I feel that everything around me has changed and yet I have stayed them same. I am sure that it’s not true but at least I feel that way! For example when people that speak English try to speak Spanish their voice changes. Mine does not! I have the same voice when I speak Spanish as in English. Everyone is amazed about that.

As for the’s going to have to stay here. It’s too much work to bring it back to the states.’s not a good guitar so I am not to worried about it.
See you all next week!

I love you! Chou!