El Salvador

El Salvador


Elder Garrett Markham
El Salvador San Salvador East Mission
PO Box #3362
San Salvador, El Salvador
Central America


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Off to El Salvador!

Hola Family!

Since I leave Monday and I won't have a pday for a while I get to email you guys today! This week has felt like graduating school again. We took our district picture and stuff so mom should be getting an email of the slide show they do for all the missionaries that are leaving. Then on Friday we had a super long day of meetings for when we leave and stuff. And I finally got one of your letters! It was the one that you guys sent the day of conference. It was so great to hear from the kids! It made me laugh reading about how Charlie needed to go to the bathroom really bad on his way to the football game and how those two guys face masked him! How rude! Also it sounds like Blake is destroying on the field and making all those fools look bad! JJ sounds like you had a good time listening to GC and Aubrey and Areah are doing good in gym! I also loved the pic of the El Salvador Temple! I cant wait to go there! I also loved Dads pic of us playing catch together! Those letters made my day 10x better! 

I cant wait to go to El Salvador! Only two more days! I'm ready to get out there except for I feel that my Spanish needs a lot more help! We started packing our bags today. It finally seems real that I'm leaving. I hope you guys get this and write back soon! I love and miss you all! See you in El Salvador!!!

Love Elder Markham

Garrett is on the largest row far right

Friday, October 24, 2014

Stuck in the old elevator!

Holy Cow! I only have a week left here! Today is my last pday! Its awesome! I got my flight stuff yesterday and there's only two other missionaries riding the plane with me. I'm going to the east mission and the other two are going to the west Belize mission. Its nice because our flight leaves at about 4:30 pm on Monday which is perfect time! The rest of the people in my district leave at 2:30 in the morning on Monday and everyone else going to central America has to wait until Tuesday at 2:30 in the morning. We will probably leave the mtc at about 1:30. We take a lunch with us and we get dinner on the plane even though its two hours and 10 minutes. I am so excited and so nervous. I can do just fine when giving my testimony and talking about most people but I can't understand the natives when they talk at all! But I'll get used to it pretty quick. 

The other day when me and my companion were teaching one of our fake investigators during our lesson, she said that she was up all night with her sister in the hospital because she just had her baby. So through out the lesson she would pretend to fall asleep. I didn't like it but my companion loved it. Then we taught our other investigator. The lesson we were teaching was about the plan of salvation, but she had a question about baby baptism before we started and because of all the things I have learned here, I was able to open right up to Moroni chapter 8 and share it with her. I learned that my scripture study before my mission was really bad. So I have really tried to do better and look up certain questions that investigators might have and that was one of the topics I looked up. I really felt the spirit and it was awesome. Our fake investigators are also our teachers so afterwards she came up to me and really sincerely told me how good it was and that she really felt the spirit.

Yesterday was full of some cool stuff. First we were at our service time and we were helping get ready the bags for the new missionaries. We had to carry a bucket full of bags where they prepared them down the stairs to where they got stored. Brother Jones is in charge of a lot of things here and he said to use this elevator for the...experience...I looked at it and how old it looked. It was awesome and knew it would be fun! So my companion, Elder Worden and his companion all got in it. It was really cool because there were two doors you had to manually shut, then you would turn the light on and press the button. We made a few trips but on one of our last trips up, it stopped working and we were stuck in the elevator. The light was still on and there was a window that you could see out. Brother Jones came by and just looked at us as we started to smile and wave to him. He then tried to open the door but they didn't move so he had to call the security guys to come get us out. When they came they were all taking pics of us through the small window and when they got us out they wanted us to stand by the elevator and take more pics of us. Needless to say it was pretty fun and we were in there for about 30 minutes. Then last night we were practicing our farewell song for our last sacrament meeting and the beginning starts off with me and Elder Worden singing a duet. I don't know why they all wanted me to sing it but I think it sounds pretty good!

I'm glad to hear that you are all doing well and I cant wait to read your emails this week! I'm sad because the letters still haven't come. My next email will probably be from El Salvador! I love and miss you all! 

love Elder Markham

Garrett loves the food at the MTC while others don't...but he had this short story about it...it sounds like the cooks will be glad when he leaves for El Salvador so they don't have to fix so much food for him!

But I'm always going up to get seconds and sometimes thirds. Until one time I was getting my third or so and the cook looked at me, smiled and said, Elder Markham, when do you leave? I said two weeks and he said, good. While he was still smiling and gave me my food haha

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Finally a short city visit outside the walls

Hola mi Familia! 

I still haven't gotten your letters yet. I hope they all get here before I leave! Also, sorry for the late emailing. We didn't know until last Friday that we were going to the temple today. It was amazing and I will send lots of pictures! I got to see a lot of the city which was pretty cool! It is really different though! At every stop light people will walk through all of the parked cars asking if you want to buy something or if they can wash your windows. It was interesting...All the buildings are so packed together!!! I need my space. The temple was really cool but we couldn't go in because they are fixing some stuff so we just went into the visitors center and watched some videos and stuff. It was a great spiritual experience. They have a store there and I was able to get a really cool backpack for 15 dollars. Sunday was amazing too! We had some great lessons on the priesthood and being missionaries. I loved it and could feel the spirit so strong for the whole day. Its weird because I only have two more Sundays here! Last night a couple elders wanted some blessings in our district so I got to participate in them. 

I met a sister here from Hillsboro but I can't remember her name. She's in my zone actually! Then there's this guy here named Rocket Fuell. Yes his first name is Rocket and his last is Fuell. He's super nice too! He is always telling me good job while we play bball together. He will say stuff like, that was a Beautiful move! haha  He hurt his ankle\foot the other week and it was pretty gross but he's fine now. 

Love Always,
Elder Markham

** Side note:  I asked him if he got to taste any real city food and if his Sunday meetings are the same as we have here?

Garrett: We didn't stop anywhere. We had buses and went straight there. And yes the store was on temple grounds. Sundays are a little different. We have priesthood, district meeting, then sacrament, then after lunch we have a class then devotional, then after dinner we get a movie (spiritual church movies).

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Learning, Eating and Sports!


This week was awesome! It was great to listen to general conference! I really missed the great food and breakfast and stuff but I was able to buy some yummy snacks at the store! Also, before the Sunday morning session we had a class with one of the Presidents here and he gave a great lesson on specific prayers which was pretty cool. It was about praying for super specific things and he shared some stories about people that had done that and it was awesome! 

The language is alright so far...I've been able to "practice teach" in Spanish without writing anything down which is really cool! I've been able to really feel the spirit and I know that the spirit is the one teaching the investigator and its telling me what to say. My brain really hurts right now because its beginning of the transition from English to Spanish so its really weird right now. I find my self writing or saying things in Spanish when I don't mean to and I roll all my letters sometimes without trying. It feels great! 

We had hamburgers the other day...or at least I think they were hamburgers...I miss Dads. They were the best! But the Mexican food here is GREAT! And the natives say that its terrible here and way better out in the city! I kinda wanna go try some. 

It sounds like everyone is doing great! That's what I like to hear!  Awesome!!! We have gym time here which is awesome to be able to go out and play different sports. I am sooooo close to dunking! I just need to hang on to the ball and soon Ill be throwing down! I'm also losing some weight. Even though I'm eating very well and I try to do push ups and other stuff in the morning. 

Love, Elder Markham

Elder Garrett Markham at the Mexico Missionary Training Center

What Garrett can see from the MTC grounds.  He says the "B" is for the high school of the city.

Missionary Training Center grounds.  Beautiful!

Garrett's missionary badge that he is required to wear throughout his mission

Garrett's dorm at the MTC

Mexico city stretches up the mountain outside of the MTC walls

The missionaries that are a part of Garrett's district at the MTC

Garrett on the right with Elder Warden from Arizona.  They have taught a couple of "practice" lessons in Spanish together at the MTC and have done well.

Garrett's sleeping quarters...obviously not military required bed making skills!

The only place they are allowed to drink the water!

Garrett says he would like to have this in his own yard some day

Garrett with other Elders of his district.  His companion on the far left (Elder Hacking)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Working hard but having fun!

Hi Family!

It was another great week here! I'm so happy that you all fasted for me to learn the language because its been pretty stressful and hard lately. And I have a few questions before I forget. What should I do about wet stinky shoes? And the pants that I got for my birthday, can I machine wash those? If I have more questions Ill ask you later.

I got the letters you guys sent from dear elder yesterday. I don't know why it took so long to get here because it said you sent them the day I got here. But it was really nice to read them! And for Brad the address to the MTC is 

Carr. Tenayuca-Chalmita No. 828, 
Col. Zona Escolar, Deleg. G.A. Madero,
C.P. 07230, Mexico, D.F.; Mexico

Its been a crazy week and Ive had a lot of fun! The two Latinos that lived in our dorm left yesterday sadly. One of them was sooo funny. He barley spoke English so that made it even better. He always called his companion a noob and I asked where he got it from and he said he just heard it from Xbox. Sunday was awesome! We had fast and testimony meeting and I was the first to go in our Branch and it was pretty good. We fasted Saturday dinner and Sunday Breakfast so it was a little different. But the spirit was so strong. 

We had a crazy lightening storm the other day and it was raining HARD! Although I had my umbrella I still got pretty wet. And the power went out a couple times this week. There's also always fireworks going off up in the air here too. One of the members of our branch presidency said that there's lots of rumors but the most common one is that the Catholics here think they can open the gates of heaven by doing so. 

I loved your paper Brock! Its amazing! You've always been one of my heroes! I'm always telling people about my wonderful family. I just wish I had some pictures to show people. I'm getting pretty good at volleyball! Maybe Ill try out for BYUs volleyball team instead haha. People in my district challenged another district in a volleyball game later today so we will see how that goes. Its still kind of crazy that I'm on a mission right now...haha Its cool to here about the Halloween stuff! I cant wait to see what its like in El Salvador. Hopefully its not too weird. Saturday nights and a few other nights while I'm trying to sleep, it seems like the whole city of Mexico is having a party. There's lots of music and laughing and stuff. 

Its so good to hear from all of you! I love and miss you lots! 

Love Elder Markham