Sunday, August 11, 2013

First Transfer

Well this week has been pretty eventful.  The biggest news came on Tuesday while up in Narra for Zone Conference; Elder Clarito will be training here in Cabar and I will be transferred! Yep, first area transfer of the Mission.  Crazy Stuff. Not sure where I’ll be transferred yet but I should find out in a couple of hours.  So I guess you'll have to go about this week wondering where exactly Elder Obray is.  My emotions are kinda all over the place. I'm way stoked to experience another part of the Philippines but I’m so sad that I have to leave the Cabar Branch.  I love the people here so much.  They're amazing. Over the past four months I’ve developed strong relationships with a lot of the people here and it's going to be hard to say goodbye. However, I know that what ever area I will be assigned to is the area I’m supposed to be in.  I'm not sure who's gonna maintain my choir. I haven't found a suitable successor yet, but I’m pretty confident that the in depth applications, and the rigorous music theory test later today should bring about some results. I will most likely be transferred back to the mainland, so I’m way excited to experience life in Manila.  I hear it's loud, dirty, and way cramped (sounds like my room back home. I'll fit right in).

We had an awesome experience yesterday.  We were just about to head home for the night yesterday when we walked by a group of people doing the Native Dance of Palawan.  Way epic! The branch missionaries we were working with insisted that we give it a try.  So we did! So much fun.  We got a good video of Elder Clarito and i trying (videoing is kind of bawal (against the rules) but i couldn't pass this up. I'll repent later).  I wish I could send it to you but the file is way too big so I guess you're just gonna have to wait another 18 months to see. You now have something to look forward to!

Went on exchanges this week with one of the Zone Leaders. I learned a ton.  One thing that I forgot to tell you is that the native language of Palawan is not Tagalog. So Tagalog is their second language, meaning everyone in Palawan speaks with a little bit of an accent. The people of Cabar are very native and have a lot thicker accent.  So when I went up to Narra, everyone spoke a more pure form of Tagalog. I was able to understand so much more! It was wonderful. It makes me excited to be back in Manila!!

Got quite a few compliments on my Tagalog this week. It was a great confidence booster.  One of the members of our branch served a mission and had a few American companions.  He told me that my Tagalog, at four months in the field, is about as good as one of his companions who had been in the field for 7 months. It made me way happy.

The work was pretty difficult this week. I swear everyone in Cabar went on a group vacation because no one was home.  It was quite frustrating. So sorry, not much to report here. Such is life as a missionary.

I'm going to end with a quote by Elder Bednar at a missionary fireside:

"We love the Lord.  We serve him.  We follow him.  We represent him."

Perfect quote describing missionary work.  If you live by this quote, you will go home after two years and be satisfied with the work and the service that those two years were filled with.

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