Sunday, May 26, 2013

Bekasi Week 2

{This letter, and especially the photos, are a little hard for me to post tonight. However, I know that Elder James wants them to be part of the story of his mission. But, this is a warning that if you have a weak stomach, you may want to skip this week's post!}

This is taken in front of our apartment in Bekasi.

Hello again everyone!

This first week and a half in Bekasi has gone by fairly fast, and I am still doing well. The city is so much different from what I have come to be used to in Indonesia, but I am adjusting more and more as time goes by. The heat is really killer. Unlike biking, where the wind is in your face, and you do not sweat as much, we travel by these little vans called Angkots, which are packed full of people, and it is blistering hot. 

But my companion and I have been getting along great, and we have been working super hard lately. The members here are also really cool, and they help us a ton with the work. Here are some highlights of this crazy week!

An English class where we teach kids and teens.
After emailing last week, we rested, cleaned, and studied. Our only appointment was a regular English class with a member named Brother Samuel. It was mostly for kids and teens, and a ton of people came. We had to split the class into age groups, and I got the teenagers. They were pretty nervous to speak at first, but once we all got to know each other, the class went well. They wanted to learn how to order food, so I taught them. It was a pretty simple lesson, and we had some fun. We then ate at Brother Samuel's house, and he took us home. 

The crazy, confusing map in our apartment of our area!
Although I am new here in Bekasi, I have been able to meet a lot of the members already and do things with them. One in particular is Sister Hesti and her family. She has been such a great help to us lately with an investigator. We have an investigator who has a concern with the Book of Mormon, so we went over there with Sister Hesti. She brought a spirit and shared experiences which helped the investigator feel much more comfortable. It was a great thing, and we were so grateful for Sister Hesti's efforts. She has three kids as well, who apparently always love the Missionaries. Their whole family is so sweet to us.

I was also able to do something this week that really made me feel like an effective Missionary. I contacted an older Christian lady while travelling to an area, and she said we could make a visit to her house another day. I got her address, and a few days later I tried to go over there with my companion. She was there with her husband, and they received us into their house. We gave the message of the restoration, and gave them each Books of Mormon. They enjoyed the lesson, even though they were a little confused about our church. They said they would read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. I felt good about this because it was the first time I did everything to find someone to teach. It is much easier here in Bekasi because we ride public transportation. We will follow up with that family later, and I hope they have read!

Here is him playing with one of the cobras, and the cobra getting angry and ready to strike.
This was the one that I ate!
The craziest eating experience I have had on my Mission was this past week as well. There is a member in my ward named Brother Aguswanto, who hunts for snakes, collects them, and also cooks some. He had snakes ranging from King Cobras, to a 4-meter python, which is fed a cat almost daily. They were everywhere, and it was so cool to see. He even brought out a cobra to play with, which was extremely poisonous and he just let it roam around with us standing there. He was not afraid at all! 

I wanted to try to eat one, so I asked him to prepare a cobra. He cut off the head, drained the blood, skinned it, and then prepared it in different ways. It was so cool! 

I first drank the blood, which was mixed with the liquid from one of the organs. It was really bitter and gross, but he said it was very healthy. 

I then ate the snake, which was prepared as fried meat, and sate. He also had a soup with Python in it, which was good. It was a once in a lifetime eating experience! 

This past Sunday was great, because I was able to meet all the members for the first time. Last Sunday was Stake Conference, so this Sunday was technically my first at this church. The ward is much smaller than my last one, but everyone is so close. I introduced myself in Sacrament meeting, and I immediately felt at home. 

Some cute member children that we visited.
The members kept inviting me to their homes, and saying how happy they were that I was here. It was a really great thing. That night we went to one member's house, and ate together. They made me eat a ton, and I could barely walk on the way home. I know I will become so close to the members here, and I can't wait to get to know them better.

The outskirts of Bekasi.
Well, that is all for today. I am having a great time here in Indonesia, and my testimony of the restored gospel is growing daily. This is the chance of a lifetime, and I am so glad I made the decision to go on a Mission. Thank you all for your support! 

-Elder James

Our normal English class had so many people this week!

Here is how I buy my breakfast or lunch sometimes.
These guys are everywhere, and they carry a bunch of cheap food.
I sometimes get nuts, fruit, or bread for really cheap!

A public restroom {I am rethinking my visit to Indonesia}

This python is 4 meters long and is fed a cat daily. {GROSS}

 These are the cobras, and the 'berbahaya' means dangerous.
He was crazy with the snakes, playing with them and such, even though they could all easily kill us.

He cut off the head first, drained the blood into a cup,
and peeled the skin off while it was hanging on a rope.

I also drank the blood, which was mixed with liquid from the liver or something.
It tasted so strange!
He prepared it into Sate, fried meat, and the python into a soup. It was good, and only $10!

1 comment:

  1. you just try to eat snakes ? wow...
    when you will back to bekasi again ?