This week has been pretty packed! We've been working like crazy to get stuff rolling here in Taft. We'll see what happens and how it turns out!
Sunday was a tiny bit of a panic. We'd asked Alicia, Carmen, Paula, and Olga, all 4 of whom now have baptism dates (Alicia and Carmen on the 22nd of this month, and the others on the 26th of January.) Unfortunately, none of them came. However, Alicia had been ready, and although her parents were supposed to call someone to get her a ride, they didn't. They wouldn't answer their phone, and then when we called a member and asked her to drop by and pick her up, the member just called and since no-one was answering, didn't go get her. Moral of the story; when the missionaries ask you to go pick someone up, it means we've already tried calling, please just go and do it. After all the only reason we ask is because we can't do it ourselves. Well, next week the plan is to set the ride anyway, and THEN if the parents can take Alicia, we'll tell the ride not to go.
I also tried translating for the first time in Sacrament meeting. It didn't seem as hard as I expected, but since I don't know all the grammar rules and words anyway, who knows how much they understood.
We had a lot of chances to do service this week. We hauled a truck load of garbage out of Carmen's yard, and took it to the dump, we did the grout in Brother Estill's kitchen, and we helped Aaron and Terry pick up branches and leaves while they trimmed trees. It was pretty crazy. It was really cool to learn to grout and all, but it was especially fun to go to the dump.
I also gave two blessings this week. Poor old Terry, who's had health problems through the roof, got ran over by his own car door. I guess while he'd been grabbing bags from the seat over; being half in and half out of the car and all, he accidentally put the car into reverse. The crazy part is, that with a messed up back and all, he tried to hold the car back with his legs (while he was lying on the ground) and he totally destroyed the door. It was bent and wrinkled to pieces! Then, after it ran him over, he got up and chased after it, tried to get in, and it happened again. The car was in pretty bad shape, and he was in really bad shape. So that night, me and Elder Gigena (our Zone leader who was on exchanges with me) went over and gave him a blessing. Afterwards, we got to teach the restoration to him, which seemed to go well enough. Later, the most awesome Savea family invited us over last night for dinner, and when we finished we gave their son Fusi a blessing. Fusi is the man, but when he talks no-one understands him! He speaks, and he's speaking words, but it's not Samoan, English, Spanish, Portuguese, or Italian! (Elder V. couldn't understand him, that's why I list the extra three at the end) At any rate, being three years old, he ought to say a lot more than he does now, and so his g-parents and parents were worried and had us bless him. It was a great blessing, I just hope that it was what the spirit was telling me, not just what I wanted to say. I'm not quite good enough to tell yet; I just kinda say what I think on.
So, that's what's been going on in Taft; I'm not quite sure what else to mention... Elder Jenkins Baptized Miriam this last Saturday. Elder Johnson was sad to have missed it, but I guess he's supposed to be here. Also, we're going on exchanges with Elder Foote the Great, and his trainee Elder Mancuso this week. The weird part is Elder Mancuso is newer than I am, and we're going to be here in Taft. Greenies in the house! I guess we'll find a way to survive.
I love you all, and hope things are going great! Go do some missionary work out there too; It's a lot easier than it looks. After all, I apparently count.
Elder Matthew David Clough