|Me and Elder Yepez|
So transfers have come and gone and now I am stationed in the scenic town of Lakeport! I really love it here. Lakeport is actually a really nice and beautiful area, and not beaten down by the cruelty of life like I had previously been informed. For starters, the roads here are paved, so that means I don't get to drive a truck like I was hoping, but the '15 Corolla is very nice so no complaints here. Also I haven't encountered a single drug dealer/addict which is slightly disappointing. If you want to find tons of tweakers you have to go to Clearlake. If you want to be in a town where it is commonplace to have no more than 8 teeth, then you go to Kelseyville. So Uncle Nate, it looks like I'm not going to get as many stories from here as we originally thought. But that's okay, I'll have to make do with normal and friendly people instead of people doped out of their minds. I was actually quite surprised with how welcoming and how humble the people are here. I was immensely taken aback when people here waved back at me and seemed genuinely happy to be alive. I don't mean to sound like I'm disparaging the rest of California, because there are great people all over Cali, which I have experienced first hand, but Lakeport is different. For obvious reasons, there is a different sense of community here and people seem far happier than what I've seen in Napa or Novato. Lakeport reminds me a lot of Kansas in that sense. People are just nice here. Wow, I took quite a roundabout and long way of getting to the point that people here are friendly, but there it is! It's great here!
So it turns out this is Elder Yepez's last transfer and I'm his last companion. When a missionary is leaving the mission, it is called, "killing your companion." So basically I'm going to kill Elder Yepez! We get along really well. His personality is just like that of my best friend at home, Assad.
Transfers were stellar, as usual. It's always a cause for celebration when one is reunited with his brothers of former areas! I learned something interesting from that transfer meeting. Apparently,(according to Elder Chan and Elder Meiners,) originally I was called to be transferred to Fort Bragg but was changed at the last minute and sent here. I haven't heard that happen very often but I was almost by the coast again, like when I was in Crescent City. That being said, I'm pretty pleased with the outcome.
After transfer meeting was over, Elder Akhmetov and I drove up here in a truck from Santa Rosa, which I enjoyed driving. Now if you look on the map you'll find the road that goes from Santa Rosa to Clearlake is ridiculously windy. There were some fools that were flying up that thing going 50-60 mph. I thought those guys were going to kill us a couple of times. I even got flipped off for what I assume was for driving too slow. Personally I didn't think I was driving too slow. I figured I was going the perfect speed to avoid dying in a fiery car crash. Elder Akhmetov and I did get lost on more than one occasion, but when the smell of weed permeated the air, we figured we were heading in the right direction.
Like I said earlier, I am loving it here so far. I've only met a handful of members but they are all pretty cool! My second dinner here we got fed lobster.... When Elder Yepez told me this blessed news, I just about started weeping. This was my first time having lobster my entire mission. God bless the Alexander's. Also, on Saturday we dined upon tri-tip. From these experiences, I believe it is safe to predict that my time spent here will be one filled with joy and great bounty.
So one of the set backs about serving here in the summer is that it gets super hot. I imagine it will be as bad if not worse than Fairfield, which was clear in the 90°'s most days. I remember a couple of times when it broke 100°. That was a splendid week... Hopefully it doesn't get too toasty here. But on the bright side, we have some baptisms coming up, 3 of which are a family so I'm stoked about that! Also we are teaching this couple named the Fullers and they have been so prepared for the gospel. They have quite a crazy story about how they came to start meeting with the missionaries. We taught them yesterday and they believe to have already received a witness that the Book of Mormon is true, and this is coming from people who use to be anti-Mormon. It's amazing to see how people have been prepared by the Lord to receive the restored gospel.
So tomorrow should interesting - we have Zone Conference. Eureka, Ukiah and Lake County will all be meeting at the Ukiah stake center. Tomorrow they are going to install these little devices into our cars that tell the mission office if and when we are speeding or just being stupid with our cars in general. So that'll be a little unnerving and stressful, but I'll persevere and probably improve my driving while I'm at it! I'll be in a meeting all day long so I don't have anything planned for my birthday other than that!
Well I hope everyone is having a superb week! Love you all and talk to you next week!
Love, Elder Hayden Ellis