Guest Post: Notes from the Field

August 30, 2007 at 2:35 pm 7 comments

*The following is an unsolicited guest post from a certain sister missionary in the California Los Angeles Mission. These excerpts come from selected emails over the last year she’s been serving.

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Celebrity Sightings
Dill Tweedy is going to be jealous, but yes I saw Goldie Hawn over lunch last Wednesday after a trip to the Temple which I shall never forget. Her arms are taut, but softer in a way that a 60-something’s arms must be. I heard her say “Exactly.” Her voice still rings with chutzpah and force. She’s still got it everybody.

Integrity
Anywho, for the 4th, the Mexicans went wild! Another reason to drink, play loud mariachi and fire to boot! Fireworks are actually illegal. We just had a stirring lesson this past Sunday in Relief Society about Integrity (ie honesty). The teacher acted like we were about to delve in to something to give us shame, like gossip. She said “This is a hard subject, so we are going to read straight out of the manual.” Note: This task is difficult seeing as literally four people in the rama are legal. Everyone else uses false papers, different names at work, and they all drive illegally, and allow their children the same privilege. The class was great. The trouble was the teacher was illegal too, lessening the power of her stirring remarks, “How many of us bought illegal fireworks and used them on the fourth of July?” Oooh.

Doting Younger Elders
i am afraid there is a strange elder who has a bit of a thing for me, as pointed out by my companion. He is always trying to get me to teach him French (hello, we are all learning Spanish right now…). he sat next to me at the Home Town Buffet on Saturday between sessions and I made the mistake of responding to my companion’s prods that I should marry her 19 year-old brother with “Age ain’t nothing but a number.” Which I believe I stole from a rapper. Anywway, the eager young elder quickly wrote this quote down in his planner. Great.

New Recipes
i must dash, but first, i have to tell you the funniest invention that my former district leader taught me: Ghetto cake. You take any boxed cake mix, or bread mix for that matter, mix it with just enough water so that it makes a thick paste that does not slide off of a spoon when tipped downwards. you then microwave the mixture (about 45 seconds for 1/4 c. of ghetto cake). The result is significantly lower calorie (no oil, no egg) cake that is cooked instantly and very easy to make. I thought this would be fabulous at a party. Individual cakes in cups for people, topped with fruit, frosting, whatever. It’s ghetto cake. you do what you want.

Sweet Discussions
A few favorite less-active moments from this past week…A sweet, obese less-active boy toddled in to the front room at the end of our lesson with his Mother to say, “Mom? I was thinkin’, could we get some tater tots? And some SPAM?” This sweet boy is a good 100 over.

Another moment, with our favorite narcissist, Miguel. After another rambunctious lesson with hi and his wife, (We asked him to name something that he likes about her, he couldn’t respond…), I shook his hand and said “Muchas gracias Miguel.” The little gnome said “Muchas gracias Senor.” He then paused and looked away. His wife and my companion were dying laughing, and I said in a raspy tone, “Gracias.” I hope that this is the last time that my gender shall be confused…

Bicycle Mishap

i wasn’t goin to share this story, perhaps this is against my better judgment, but it has never happened before and it SHALL NEVER happen again, so I here goes… I often follow my companion in and out of traffic, much like a goose following the head pin goose. Last Friday, my compaion whirred through an interesection, and I got caught behind some cars turning right, wiating for a gang of misled youth to cross.

By the time the light turned green, I sped off, supposing that Hermana had waited at the next intersection. hermana had not. Thrree minutes later I had a funny feeling. We had been on our way to visit Ana Silvia, an investigator. Resting at the side of our local major road, I realized that Hermana was no where to be found, i knew not Ana Silvia’s address. I felt vulnmerable and dark.

I took off down the next street, and pulled over to a phone book. i then realized that I did not know Ana Silvia’s last name. Ten minutes had passed. Where on earth was Hermana? By this time, i was inwardly vomiting, feeling susceptible and disgusting. I panicked, then thought of an appropriate course of action. I decided that the safest thing to do would be to go home, and wait to be contacted. I sped home, entered the apartment, locked the door and called Ana Silvia’s house. Little Angie, Ana Silvia’s daighter informed me that no, Hermana had not arrived.

Twenty minutes later I got a phone call from a ward member who did not speak English. After an exasperating few sentences, he said “Don’t move apartment!” Fifteen minutes later a frzzled Hermana called me. She had stopped, bawling, at a ward member’s house. she had called that President’s Assistants to inform them of my missing state. They told her that they were on their way (to do what I am not sure). hermana told me that she would come home immediately. When she got home we embraced, both terrified and panicked. She called the Assistant to the President and told him what had happened. Elder Allen openly laughed at us, and threatened to put our tale in the Clam Chatter news letter for the whole mission to guffaw over. We were not amused. We both decided that we never ever wanted that to happen again. Hermana now frequently turns around to make sure I am behind her.

Exercising
The people here call me GRANDE. I am at least six inches taller than everyone in this town. In the mornings we jog. P.S. I have found a companion who will go for 45 minutes with me! Heaven! I jog in a fuschia outfit and when I randomly and aerobically punch the air in front of me, the Hispanics do not know what to do. People openly stare at me.

From Palos Verdes to Maywood, CA
Dad: Expect my bills to now read “McDonalds, A&W, and El Ceviche Loco.” No more Trader Joes. We go to the Logorio.

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Entry filed under: Commentary, Embarrassing Moments, Fond Memories, Living History, Random, Travel.

Some people don’t have maps Diana, Princess of Wales

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. JL  |  August 30, 2007 at 2:45 pm

    LeMare, can we now add Ghetto Cake to our recipe section? “For gals on the run…”

    Reply
  • 2. Mikel  |  August 30, 2007 at 3:40 pm

    I’m pleased to hear things are going so well, although I’m left wanting more Goldie Hawn news. It would have been cool if Goldie had been eating lunch with all her sons from Overboard. Or if she had been discussing the plans to build a miniature golf course.

    Reply
  • 3. Lowdogg  |  August 30, 2007 at 3:43 pm

    I loved this post. As someone who served as a spanish-speaking missionary in SoCal, it rings true. Although I didn’t use a parental credit card. Just cheap burritos for us.

    The part about a lot of members being illegal? It’s not quite as bad in San Diego (everything about SD is at least a little better than LA). Only 2 people that I taught and baptized can be located currently. Everyone else was either illegal or a Marine.

    Also, my wife served in South America (!Viva Bolivia TRussell!) and at 5’9” was a giant there.

    Reply
  • 4. lemare  |  August 30, 2007 at 4:16 pm

    Oh my goodness, Mikel, every time TBS or USA plays Overboard rerun, I stop everything and watch the hearwarming tale!

    At 5’6″, I was a giant in Japan.

    Tater tots and spam make me want to throw up.

    Reply
  • 5. Jdon  |  August 30, 2007 at 6:18 pm

    Did you ever wonder if our illegal alien problem is the consequence of foreign people not having any maps? If only we had a beauty pagent finalist handy to tell us what to do with such people.

    Reply
  • 6. TRussell  |  August 30, 2007 at 6:51 pm

    I like to refer to it as La Tierra Santisima

    Reply
  • 7. Meldred  |  August 31, 2007 at 3:37 pm

    The fuschia outfit is so typical Hermanita AGI. I’m glad she’s keeping it real out there in the ‘hood.

    And El Pollo Loco is awesome.

    Reply

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