Allen's e-mail address

Monday, October 26, 2009

Tough week

Well hello again,

I don´t like these computers down here at all. I can´t download any pictures to send to you guys and it´s frustrating. I´ll see what i can do. I really want to show you guys whats going on. Well, this week was really frustrating. We had no investigators that wanted to listen to any more lessons. Our baptism candidate fell through with her commitments so now we have to work on the word of wisdom and church attendance with her. AHHH!! It´s been way frustrating. But, just got to keep praying to find people who want to listen. So Sara, you´re pretty stubborn, but these people have you beat by another century! They will not even give us a chance to say what our message is about before they reject us. I think they don´t like our white shirts and ties. Or maybe it´s the name tag. I don´t know what they ate for breakfast but it´s not well with them. In one day, we contacted 35 people and got no citas para volver [return appointments]. Yeah. Welcome to Argentina Allen. Oh thanks for the welcome... NOT! sigh.

This place is so fun to just look around. I´m still in awe of a lot of things. Like for instance, milk, it comes in bags. Lawn mowers, you have to plug them in. Oh and there are more dogs than humans and the mosquitoes are immune to repellent. Anyway, enough of that. I´m done talking about this country and my problems with the people lol. Next paragraph.

So on my way down here to Argentina, someone must have taken my photo album of the family and Britney and other pictures and taken them home to show everyone what the perfect life is ha ha. Well, I can´t find my album so I would love to have pictures to show everyone again please. Just have everyone send what they want in one package just so I know if it all gets here. That would be tremendous. Mom, you´re in charge of that no battles. I would also like a raincoat, please. We just had a huge rainstorm that about drowned me. It was really cool.

Thank you to Tia Lelani and Britney for the letters even though you sent them like two weeks ago. I would love to hear from everyone through emails. Everyone can email me but i can only email my parents back. So I'll answer all questions, comments and concerns on that email.

So zone conference was this past Friday and it is the longest meeting of my life! Probably cause it went all day long ha ha. We just talk about our new goals and learned how to contact better. But I don´t think we need to contact better, we need people to be better accepting lol jk.

Well I can´t remember what else i wanted to say. Oh, if you´re going to send a Christmas package, send it before Thanksgiving. You might think I´m crazy but trust me. Do it. And send it through express or it has a better chance of getting stolen. and Jesus stickers. Remember my family, remember... ha. OH YEAH!

Britney, I sent you a letter slash birthday card. So you should get it sometime this week or next week. You can open it whenever cause it´s just a letter. nothing special because i don´t trust people here with special packages.

Happy Halloween everyone. Just so everyone knows, I am dressing up for Halloween. I am dressing up as my companion. Laugh if you want... Mom. Anyway. I love you all. a lot. Hope you don´t freeze there as I´m dying of sweat here. Until next week.


Elder Pickett

PS So Boca and River tied but you could hear every house that was watching it, lol. I tried attaching a video [to this mail] but it's just too big to load and pictures take a while. I'll send some as soon as I can. And BTW, I already ate a choripan. Anything you want me to eat for you while I'm here? LOL!

Monday, October 19, 2009

One week down, 99 to go!

Hello all,

One down, I think something like 99 or 100 weeks left. Wow. But this week was kinda long but kinda not. Tracting takes the energy out of you. Sara, I don´t even think cross [country] will even help train me for all this walking. We walk like 12-13 km or more a day! My feet kill me!! and my calfs and my hamstring and EVERYTHING! I feel fat. Anyway, thats all the complaining I have. Wait, one more, the people here are so flippin' stubborn it´s ridiculous. Worse than Sara! I know. Not possible? Oh..., but it is.

I appreciate all the emails I have received from Mom, Dad, Sara, Marcos, Andi, Sophie, Kirby, Abuelita y Grandpa and Britney. Unfortunately, I cannot answer each of you individually but hopefully you all can feel my love for each of you in this letter. Now to start answering questions. The directions to my pench [pension] is 1161 Junin. Do NOT write to this address!! Just look it up on Google Earth. I have not bought a sleeping bag yet because it is going to get so flippin' hot soon. I have a blanket that the mission gave me for my entire mission and a pillow. I sleep in a bunk bed. On top like normal.

Elder Palacios is from Santiago, Melipilla to be exact. I receive 500 pesos a month. I don´t know how much that is US dollars [$135.14 at the current exchange] but apparently I am rich. I receive it on a card every month. I don´t have it yet so I don´t the specifics. All I know is that I have money to survive. So we have eaten at members house almost everyday. And we eat the same thing over and over and over again. MILANESAS!! It is the best food ever! I will probably get sick of it after awhile. Elder Palacios doesn´t really like it, flippin' Chileno haha.

[In response to my question if Carlo could go visit him] No tengo tiempo para visitar con Carlo. Sorry. We are just busy walking the streets, bringing this sad world a message of glad tidings of great joy!! We have one person who has a baptism date. But she didn´t come to church because of Dìa de la Madre. oh Happy mother´s day mom from Argentina. We have a lot of investigators that aren´t fully invested and it´s hard but we keep trying.

My area is a ward by the way. Merlo 1!!! Our ward is awesome. I got introduced yesterday and had to bear my testimony. It wasn´t scary at all. Oh man I´m tired.

Elder Palacios and I get to go to the temple tomorrow, Tuesday, for the first and last time. Really cool. The streets here are great if you are looking for a job as street cleaner. There is so much trash its ridiculous. You can probably compare it to my room at home i guess.. haha. Our chapel is on Avellaneda between Chacabuco and Maìpu.. haha..

Anyway. Sorry if I didn´t answer all your questions. Write them again and hopefully I´ll answer them next time. Oh and packages Mom, Put like Jesus stickers on the box so people don´t take it. They won´t steal from Jesus. I love you all. If you doubt that then you´re CRAZY! And mom, Don´t cry for me in Argentina!

Elder Pickett

Thursday, October 15, 2009

I'm Here!

Hello All:

I´m tired, exhausted, shocked, and in a daze. So I got in at about 9:30 on Tuesday morning. We met President Benton and we went to the temple where we took pictures. We also picked up two missionaries from the CCM here. After we went to the temple, we went to the mission home where we had facturas and milanesa and potatoes. It was so good. After the mission home, we went to the Rio [de la Plata] and took pictures. It was huge! After the Rio [de la Plata] we went to the mission office where we had a meeting about the mission and stuff. And... we got companions! Wahoo! My companion is Elder Polasios. He is from Chile. Lucky for me, he speaks English also. Also, I´m in [the] Merlo #1 [First Ward].

It´s pretty crazy here. Everyone drives here like mom does on Mario Kart. CRAZY! So I get to the place where I´m staying and this place looks creepy, until you get inside, lol. My compa and I are with the district leader and his companion. The "what in the world" momento for me last night was the fact that when I got there, they ordered out empanadas. These guys are addicted to the food here. It´s funny to watch.

Oh before I forget, Grandpa Pickett, did you know an Elder Smith who served in Argentina from '61-'63? I told him you were in Tucuman a lot and he says he was there too. Just wondering. AND.. Abuelita and Grandpa, since you guys have experience with the Argentine people and being missionaries, my misión president said he would love to have you guys serve for like a year, if you wanted to. That was an idea he threw out so don´t think that you need to totally go. But it would be cool if there were two Elder Picketts.. if you know what I mean, lol.

So i have been told that using is the best way to get letters down here. My address is:

La Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos Dias
Elder Allen Pickett
Mision Argentina Buenos Aires Oeste
C.C. 92
1702 Ciudadela
Buenos Aires, Argentina.

That goes with packages too. But might i just suggest is to send me emails so I can have your address and i can email with you instead of write you cause it is expensive to send out letters and there is no guarantee on them getting to you or to me. So please, everyone email me. I check email every Monday so I'll write back then.

Well Elder Polasios [sp?] and I are going to check up on some investigators tonight. Our goal is to commit them to get baptized by this weekend. A Challenge, but fun stuff.

Well, this email was just a check-in email. Yes mom, I´m alive. Yes Grandpa you were right, no one knows how to drive, and the rest the Picketts who are Argentine, the food is great! I love it so far here. I´m having a blast.

Until next time, I love you all!

Elder Pickett

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Arrived in Argentina

Allen departed the MTC on Monday morning. He called us from the Salt Lake airport and from the Dallas airport. It was fun hearing his voice. Then he flew to Buenos Aires on a red-eye special arriving there Tuesday morning. We just got word that he arrived safely and the mission president's wife posted pictures on her blog. Here are her words and pictures:

"We picked up 15 new missionaries early this morning! There were 10 Elders and 5 Sisters.

13 of the North American missionaries arrived from the U.S. at 7:30 this morning, after flying all night, and 2 South American missionaries came from the Missionary Training Center here in Buenos Aires.

We took the new missionaries to the temple, where our Assistants took photos of all of us in various poses in front of the temple.

After the Temple, we took all the new missionaries to the Mission home, where President Benton interviewed them, and they had an "Argentine" lunch of "Milanesa" and "Pure de Papas", salad, and cake and delicious Argentine ice cream.

After lunch, we encouraged all the North American missionaries to take a nap, because they had been flying all night last night and they instantly complied with our wishes, falling asleep in various poses all around the Mission Home.

After the nap, they listened to some teachings by President Benton, then it was off for a walk by the "Rio de La Plata", and, after that, they rode in a bus to the Mission Offices, where they met their new missionary companions for the first time, received some more training, and then went off with their new companions to spend the night in their assigned apartments.

This all added up to lots of new sights, sounds, tastes, and experiences for a group of very wonderful, and very excited young adults!

We are sure thrilled to have them all in our Mission!"

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Last e-mail from MTC

Hello Family and whoever else is reading this,

Well it's been a great experience being here in the MTC or CCM whatever you wanna call it. I've definitely have had my difficult moments but you know what? God is good. I don't know how much more obvious of statement I can make. As you already know, I have been struggling trying to teach in Spanish. So I've been praying every morning, night, breakfast, lunch, dinner, etc. You get the point. I've praying a lot to help me to know what to say and how to say what the "investigators" need to hear. And as I've been studying the lessons and looking up scriptures, I've been able to feel the Spirit and know what to study in the lesson specifically.

Our teacher told us to write down yesterday what stood out to us during conference. So I wrote down that fathers and sons need to have a better relationship, cease to be angry, come unto Christ, and some others that I can't remember right now but they were good, I promise. Once we did that, he told us that we were probably inspired to pay attention to those talks more because it might help an investigator on our mission. I thought that was really cool. Then also we went into an activity where we went to chapter five in Preach my Gospel and went to the page where there were a bunch of questions. Look it up, but we asked our companion to answer one of the questions by looking up scripture to back it up. Well, this ending up turning into a huge discussion. The one question that was hard to explain was, Why does God make us suffer through trials? or something like that. Well we went to Alma 36 when Alma is talking to his son about what he did when he was younger. As we were reading the whole chapter, I had the spirit come to me so strong about the grace of God. When Alma was pleading for his life, Jesus came and rescued his soul from the gall of bitterness. We also went to other scriptures in 2 Nephi chapter 2 which is an AWESOME chapter to study. I love studying the plan of salvation. It has made me realize that I am really out here to help people come unto Christ. That I am really trying to save their souls through the Spirit.

Anyway, there was the spiritual stuff. Conference was great. Sitting in a room with 2,104 missionaries is definitely something cool. Singing of course brings chills to the spine. My district is great. They are like my brothers, sorry Marcos lol. We love to have gospel discussions, other kinds of discussions... ha ha I am definitely ready get out of here though. If you haven't heard, I am leaving on Monday. My flight leaves at 12 and I land in Dallas at about 330. Then I leave Dallas at 730 and get to BA at 8 the next morning. ugh. But I am very excited to go and see what the Lord has prepared for me there. Maybe I'll meet a family just like ours... that would be weird. I would know exactly what to say: "Sara quit being a butt! Marcos Calm DOWN! Sophie your so cute. And Andi, well, keep doing your thing you weirdy" ha ha!

I love you all. Thank you for you support and love and letters. And thank you mom for updating me on you doing the dishes and laundry. I definitely get a kick out of that. Britney, thank you for the fog horn. It is being used well :). Tia Cui and Abuelita y Grandpa, gracias por las cartas y las palabras buenas para mi. Until next week, this is my last e-mail from the U.S.... next time you get one it will be from Argentina!

Love you mom and dad so much.

Elder Pickett. Che. Petite. Cualquier.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Travel Plans

Dear Family,

I got my flight plans to get out of jail... I mean, the MTC. I will be departing at 12:00 pm on October 12th [AA flight 380] and arriving in Dallas at 3:35 pm. Leave Dallas at 7:35 pm [AA flight 997] and arrive in Buenos Aires at 7:55 am [on Tuesday]. Times of departure and arrival are subject to change. So I'm pretty sure that it's all local time, so... yeah. So don't send any letters Saturday or Sunday 'cause I won't get them. Anyhow, if you have any questions call me... JK write me ASAP.

General conference today. This is going to be fun watching it with 2000 other missionaries. Hopefully I get a Bingo with Conference Bingo! You'd better not have given me a lame board. I'll get upset if you did. My district sends their love... LOL! Oh, and I send my love too. :-)


Elder Pickett

Saturday, October 3, 2009

3rd Letter

Dear Family, (and friends if necessary)

Things are going great here, don't start crying mom. We taught our first lesson in Spanish on Wednesday in the TRC (Training Resource Center). I actually did really well. I know, I know. Be surprised. But! nonetheless, I did do it, and I did it well.

So all my compa's have figured out that I can sing pretty well, so...what do missionaries do when they can't listen to music? That's correct. Put on their own concert. Haha. We sing everything that was on the radio when we left like Taylor Swift and other nonsense, but it's the funniest thing when it happens. I think there is another room that is requesting a concert or maybe they want to challenge us. We don't know, but who cares. Haha.

My pictures are ready to be picked up tomorrow so I'll send them ASAP.

So I've ditched my English PMG [Preach My Gospel] and scriptures. I'm going only Spanish (even though that's what I was suppose to do already). I must say, I've learned the language pretty fast because of it.

Let's see here. Let's get personal one on one with the siblings. Sara, how's cross [country] going? Marcos, I bet you have homework right now and you don't want to do it. Well I got two words for you... DO IT! Love ya Bud. Sophie, Sophie, Sophie, Sophie I love you. ANDI!!! You better be singing "Shot Through the Heart" for me while I am gone, you too Sophie.

Well it's been nice teaching you guys. Can we leave with a word of prayer? Okay, I guess not. Haha. Until next time. I love you all.
Elder Pickett

Friday, October 2, 2009

MTC Pictures

My verbally-challenged son wrote a letter this week with 4 (yes, you read that right) words. "Pictures!!!! Love, Elder Pickett". So, here are the pictures that he sent from the MTC.

General Conference Highlights