Whew, another week, another chance to freak… as in out, about how the time passes. I am well into my fifth month of the mission. To all my friends who thought the time would drag, I say ha ha! Here it is, and there it goes, quick as a flash. I’m gonna be back harassing the crap out of everyone again before they know it. But for now I’m enjoying the new insanity that is my life. And even when I’m not, I’m enjoying the fact that I’m having a bad day. Because when I die, will I even get to have a bad day again? If “it’s all good” like we believe, then I better remember what if feels like to have a bad day. Or two.
But as it turns out, my days have not been bad. One reason (big reason) is that we finally set a baptism date with Mudo. That is not his real name; his real name is Jose Alberto, but calling people by their deficiencies or physical characteristics is part of the culture here. So Mudo is Mudo, which means mute. He has no teeth and can only grunt to talk. It used to severely freak me out, especially since everyone (mostly his family and my companion) think he might have a crush on me. Aside from the whole language barrier thing and the fact that he’s in his forties, I dunno… I may have something to come back to here. But he has to get in line behind the peso millionaire who is convinced I would be happy as his “house mate.” He is also old. Maybe the universe is trying to tell me something. But what I want to try to tell all of you is that I’m happy about Mudo because we were teaching him, he had all the lessons, he would always ask us (well, sign to us) that he couldn’t wait to be baptized like his brother-in-law, Franqueli (yes, that Franqueli. EVERYONE is related here). And then he disappeared out into the campo, or non-city parts of the country for two weeks. And apparently, he hadn’t stopped drinking coffee as completely as we thought he had. But he’s returned from the campo, he’s off the dirty bean (the sweetest smelling dirty bean of them all), and the bishop said we could set his date for anytime. So it shall be… the 16th of this month. I have a lot of animo for this one. Sometimes I think people are surprised when people like Mudo actually realize what a prophet is or the role Jesus plays in our lives. It reminds me of my little sister, Delaney. People with handicaps may not be able to communicate on the same level as “normal” people, but they have other sensitivities that we will probably never understand in this life. Mudo may be dumb in the sense of his tongue being bound, but his mind is still perfectly functional. I hope we all remember to treat everyone like children of God because, well, WE ARE.
Another fun tidbit: We ran into Davy again! He pretty much admitted he’s been avoiding my companion and me because he’s been embarrassed. We told him we’re not here to judge him, just to help him. He explained to him that his life is “the chaos.” The first chaos was 1973 when he was born. The second was when he had four kids… with four separate women. The third was, of course, the unforgettable date of his deportment to the D.R. And the final stage is “me, myself and I,” as he put it. Oh Davy. Never a dull moment. It would be super chulo if he’d come to church but I don’t think he’s ready. I’m gonna keep hoping though. Just because. It is the Christmas season and all.
And some final fun facts I keep forgetting but want to squeeze in: There are huge hoyos in the sidewalk everywhere because people steal the manhole covers to sell them or whatnot for the metal. So don’t get distracted by the sights cuz you need your attention on the ground so you don’t fall down the hole and break a foot (been there, done that, want no more). And the world here is owned by the companies Claro and Orange. They are the phone companies here and every time Hermana Brown and I want to call someone, we have to remember that we’re using our precious orange minutes. When we run out, we have to go buy more from the farmacias here, or the Colmados (sorta like 7-11s minus the gas, and they’re on about every corner). It makes for the world’s shortest phone conversations ever. And speaking of a short conversation, I, as usual, have to cut my time here short. Be good. Or try, at least, and I might do the same.
Abrazos and whatnot,
Hermana Sweeney (suini)