Monday, July 15, 2013

July 15, 2013

Dear everyone,

So, this week we went to Mount Bromo and a waterfall near there for a zone trip.  One of the cool things about that was seeing Elders Barrus, Kyle, and Murphy from my MTC group. They're all serving in Surabaya.  We went up to the lookout to see the sunrise, which happens here at about 5:15.  We had to get there at 4:30, and it's about three hours away, so we left Malang at midnight.  Sleep when you're dead, right?  But then we got to the overlook and in was rainy, so there were a ton of clouds.  Which meant that we didn't actually see the sunrise.  But then the clouds melted off, and we got to see the view.  It's a gorgeous place.  Then we hiked up to the rim.  You ride jeeps everywhere in the Bromo park, and they parked the jeep maybe a mile and a half away from the stairs because they want you to ride the horses.  But we're not allowed to do that, so we just walked.  It was quite the view.  And then we drove another hour to a waterfall.  It was maybe a mile and a half hike, and there used to be a path but it's gone now, so you just walk on the bank of a stream, and cross back and forth maybe six or seven times.  And hike in the jungle of Indonesia.  And see spiders that are as big as your face.  I got a picture of one, but I can't tell which picture it is from the thumbnail, so yeah...  You don't get to see it. Maybe in two years you can ask me about it.  When you get to the end of the ravine, there are maybe five little waterfalls that you have to walk under to get to the big waterfall, so we got so wet.  And then you can climb up to the big waterfall and stand almost under it, which was so cool.  One of the most majestic things I've ever seen.  It was so beautiful.
We asked our investigator to get baptized, and he accepted.  But then he told us that he's moving to Bekasi for art school.  So we're sending his information over there, no big deal, and he'll make a great addition to the ward over there, but it's time to find someone else to teach.

The branch here is really strong.  It's kind of small, maybe 80 people, but everyone's super active and they love the church.  The meetings are just like at home.  Except in Indonesian.  And sometimes I have to translate for the Williams, which is so hard.  I understand the ideas, but it's understanding in Indonesian, not in English, so it's so hard to come up with the corresponding English word.  We have a church building here, and it's really nice.  It has maybe five classrooms on the bottom floor, with a single hallway going long ways, and the top floor is the chapel.  It's a really efficient layout, and it's really cool.
It's rained pretty hard for a couple of days, and when it gets going, it's so much water.  We just go back to the apartment and wait it out.  At first, I felt like we should keep teaching, but then I realized that it's kind of rude to expect people to let you into their homes when you're completely soaked.  So we just go and dry off.  It only ever rains for 30 minutes or so (so far), so it's just bonus study time.

I'm still healthy, happy, and working hard.  
Elder Heiner

Elder Suryono, our Investigator, and Me.
Compare me in this picture to me right out of the MTC.
Can you spot the missing 12 pounds?
And, I look tall.
Elder Suryono, Me, and Mt Bromo.
260 steps to the rim of Mt Bromo.
Inside Mt Bromo.
Oh yeah, it's a volcano.
Hiking in the Indonesian Jungle
And these waterfalls we walked under to get to the big falls.
Look close.
Elder Suryono and me under a waterfall.

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