Monday, March 20, 2017

week 81

(editor's note: I apologize for the crazy, varied fonts - not sure what is going on. The font is set to default, and shows up uniform size and color on the draft, but posts all wonky. Grr.)

Hey! This week was crazy so I am going to try to break it down day by day.

Tuesday- Divisions with Elder Rios-Lazo in Tucuru. Tucuru is like an hour and a half or two hours away from Teleman by bus. We got back late from district meeting, but we still tried to visit this mountain that was far away. It got too dark so we ended up not being able to do anything and had to walk back in the dark and the rain. But Rios-Lazo is a dope guy so it was fun. He put six new fechas this week, all one big family, so we are super happy about that!

Wednesday- More divisions, went back to that mountain. We heard there were some Church members there so we went looking for them and got lost a few times. We were in this little village and we were trying to get to a different village called Calle Vina Rosa and kept taking wrong turns, but we got there eventually! And we found one family so that was good, hopefully they can help the missionaries there find other families. They aren't showing up to church because of how far it is, they have to walk like three or four hours. I am not sure how many members are there, that is what Elder Rios-Lazo is going to go try to help out with. We finally made our way back into town after lots of walking and met up with our companions and had dinner with a family in Tucuru. 

These are from when I was with Rios, just a spot where we decided to take some pics above Tucuru:

Thursday - We made it back to our area and visited our fecha Ronald. He is pilas and we taught him about the Book of Mormon! He works by Canlun. From where we live to Ronald is maybe two or two and a half hours, like half an hour if you can catch a truck. We normally find a ride there and walk back. This is a picture I took by the river leaving Canlun. I don't get to do a lot of trips on p-day, but in most of my areas I walk out my front door and I am doing some sight seeing, so it's all good. This is how the women dress whenever they are going out.

When we got back to our area we got a call that the missionaries in Panzos got jumped and when they ran away they fell down a mountain and we needed to go find them and check up on them. It's a really long weird story, but basically it was just some random guy who asked them to give his daughter a blessing and when they got there she wasn't sick, so he asked them for money. They said no, and he got mad so they ran, one Elder took off and the other one followed him. But the guy was going to catch them and I think he had a machete, they said they think he was drunk, so they jumped off the side of the mountain. One slid and the other pretty much jumped, it is a miracle they are okay to be honest. We went looking for them for awhile and when we found them they were fine, eating in a comedor, just a little shaken and scratched.

Friday- We went to Chulac. It is maybe and hour and a half by bus. (Yay mountains!!!) We needed to do a interview the missionary from Panzos was supposed to do, but couldn't because of what happened. It was nice, the kid is about 12 or 13 and he knew everything he was supposed to know so that makes it easier. He wanted me to baptize him because he was excited I was a gringo haha. Almost everyone asks you to baptize them after you do their interviews, but we always have the missionaries or the members from that area do it. We were with Elder Pablo and Cerezo all day and had a good time, made some pancakes with members and stuff, so we showed up on the right day.  This one of the girls in the house where we made pancakes. A lot of the kids here ask to have their picture taken.

We also visited a guy who hadn't shown up to church for a while. We just shared some scriptures with him and had some caldo afterwards. 

Saturday- Made it back to our area and did the service project all day. It was me and my companion and four other guys from the rama. So I will try to tell you what the house is like. There are no doors or windows, the entry is just a spot where they don't build anything. There are three main posts on each side that hold up the house, and to those they tie three sticks horizontally, then they tie the walls vertically to those three sticks. The walls are made of bunches of sticks that have been tied together. I cleared out the dirt so they could put the stick walls in, then helped tie all the sticks together for the walls. I was wondering how the posts stay in the ground, because I dug out the spot for the posts and it seems like they will just fill with water, but they assured me that it would be ok. This is only the second house I have helped with but from what I have seen most mountain houses are done this way. It is very humble. Most of the missionary housing at least has solar panels for a bit of electricity and running water. Water here is sketchy most of the time so it is never a sure thing, and light as well for that matter, but at least we kind of have it. They have candles mostly, and usually they cook inside over a fire in their little kitchen. Most everyone has a hose or something outside their house for water, but if not they have to go to a river or something.

After that we tried to have English class but no one showed up. 

Sunday- Ronald didn't make it out to church. We are figuring out what we will do with him because it has been a while since he has made it. We don't really know what to do. We always tell him to go, and he is always like, "oh yeah I will make it this time, God first!" and then doesn't show up. He lives all out on his own, so we can't have anyone go pick him up, and I don't think anyone has cars that can make it out there. We did have three investigators show up so that was something. Most of them aren't married to the people they are living with, so that is hard. We have been visiting one of the guys on and off, he comes to church every Sunday, but won't get married. So he isn't making progress. One is married to the President's son, but she doesn't want to listen to us. We are kind of struggling right now, but President of Rama says that they might have a family for us to teach this week. After church we finished the service from the day before, then went to visit a member named Almicar that didn't show up to church. We usually visit him every Saturday, he is awesome. This is a picture of me eating dinner with his family. 

Mario is doing really good! His wife got a calling (position serving in the Church) and he is going to the temple for the first time this week. I wish I could go with him. I think we are going to help him find some family names to take to the temple tomorrow. 

So that was my week! I was only in my area for like two or three full days so it was kind of crazy, but it was good.  I think we are going to stick to our area more this week, I hope so anyways, that was a lot of travel. It has been surprisingly rainy, it is supposed to start warming up soon though. It is about the same as Canlun, but they say this is one of the hottest areas in the Polochic so we will see how well I handle it haha.

My spiritual thought is simple this week. I just know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I felt the Spirit pretty strong when I was sharing with Ronald how I came to have my testimony of the Book of Mormon. Afterwards he said he would read it so I think it will go well. I hope you have a good week, I love you!

Love, Elder Toolson

p.s. here is the internet I write at!


  1. I love reading about his adventures and perspective. He is always so positive. Love this guy to pieces!

  2. He looks like he belongs in Lord of the Rings in that top photo!