December 1 – Week 7

Tuesday we got off the plane, we went throught the gates and at the bottom of the escalator there was this smaller gentleman and his lovely wife. It was my mission President! President Garcia and Hermana Garcia. We got into a taxi and we crossed the border. There were 10,000 people coming into the States and about 5 people going into Mexico. That’s including us and the mission president.

Despues… we went to the mission president’s house (or condo or apartment), I don’t know what it was, but it was beautiful and we ate lunch there. No one eats dinner here we just eat lunch. Then we went to the the Mission office and I was introduced to my companion, Elder Segoviano. He’s from Campeche, Mexico. I speak more Spanish than he does English. it is really hard to communicate sometimes; well actually all the time. I’ll send you some pics here in a sec. Entonces, then we were assigned to our fisrt area. It is in El Florido, Tijuana, Mexico, and our area or town or whatever it is called is Terrazas. I forgot what it means. I’ll have to send you pictures of it next monday. When i was assigned here, one of the mission president’s assistants said, “good luck and don’t carry more than 12 pesos on you” which is like 93 cents and i was like sweet, awesome, can’t wait.

We got someone to drive us to our area. His name was Hermano Norris.  People’s names here are ridiculous cause theres like 5 names so i just call people Hermano or Hermana. We got to our area and it is very very different than the U.S. For me to explain this is really difficult but here goes… take the worst slums in America – probably in Chicago or New York, and then times it by 20, take away the asphalt roads and put in unfinished dirt roads with some rocks, and a crap ton of trash and move it to the sides of the roads, fill it with a million dogs, both dead and alive, and there is my area! Oh and then add a bucket of half full feces and put it on the side of the road so all the people can smell it.

Our apartment isn’t bad, it’s like the size of the upstairs living room, including Jordan’s room and the bathroom, minus 100 sq feet. All the houses here are unfinished concrete structures, well the nicer homes, and have a some sort of wood roof. Other houses here (which is most) are made out of wood, doors, plywood, sheet metal, rebar, rocks, and dirt and thats about it. But honestly I love it here. No one complains about anything, no one really has anything, and every one is happy and every one wants to hear the gospel! But, they don’t really come to church haha. We have about 6 or 7 appointments a day and most of them we are able to go teach them, but alot of the times they say no.

Oh yeah there is nothing green here everything is dry and it doesn’t rain here at all. The only grass here is at our church and our church building is beautiful. And it has AC. But there is no AC anywhere else period. At least not in my area. But this time of the year it’s pretty cool tempatuere wise. We do a lot of bus riding and about 4 or 5 miles of walking a day, most of which is uphill, and it sucks because my companion i swear could win an olympic gold medal for speedwalking because that is all that he does –  he walks super fast. The people here are great and we have 4 baptism dates for the month of Deciembre. The hard part in my area is getting people to actually come to church, you have to go to church 5 times to be bautizarse. But it is great. I love the people. The area is different, but all is well. I’ll be here in this area for about 6 months.

I don’t understand a single word that comes out of people’s mouths and I feel really out of place, especially because I’m big and white and everyone here is small and brown haha but it’s great! I’m about to send some photos of my companion, presidente, and some maestros en la MTC. My Spanish is definitely getting better and I’m definitely relying on the Lord every single day here. My companion is the distrito leader. There are 6 elders and 2 hermanas in my distrito, 3 of us are new. One elder here is from Kentucky so he translates what people say to me. I have been showing people those pictures that you sent of the sharks I caught and all of them are amazed haha! Also my companion lets me teach some of the lessons. It’s difficult but I press forawrd having hope in the Spirit to help me know what to say and it’s awesome! I hope every day of my life I can learn to rely more on the Lord as much as I am doing here.

Also today we went by the temple. I forot tmy camera and I’ll have to send you pictures later – I’m here in the area for 6 months.. pero, the temple is beautiful and when I looked at it from the ground at its whole, this overwhelming sense of peace fell upon me, and i felt really peaceful, and i knew that the church is true. It is a beautiful temple. It will be done next November. Honestly, the nicest part of Tijuana is the temple. On the mountain that the temple faces it says “Jesu Cristo Es El Senor” and it’s awesome. I only have 45 minutes to write because i have to write the mission president the same time, but pics are coming within 3 min. Love all of you.

Elder Wilkes
Elder Wilkes, his MTC Spanish teacher and his MTC Companion
Elder Wilkes & his new companion (yellow tie) in Tijuana.

One thought on “December 1 – Week 7

  1. Linda Peters says:

    Elder Wilkes, I love reading about this journey you have embarked upon. With each post I can feel your spirit testify of the gospel. My heart swells as I witness your growth. You are an amazing missionary and you will touch so many lives in these next 2 years. Some you will not even know about! I love you!
    Aunt Linda


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