Garrett in front of the Guayaquil Temple

Monday, March 14, 2011

14 March 2011 I made it to Ecuador-last week!

Hello family!

Wow, this has been an amazing and absolutley crazy week! We arrived in Guayaquil on Tuesday the 8th without any problems and we stayed the night at the house of the Assistants to Pres. Montalti, which is in Guayaquil.

On Wednesday morning we left for our respective areas- I am in a city called Machala, 3 hours south of Guayaquil, in the Puerto Bolivar ward. About 2.5 hours into the 3 hour bus ride, the gas line on the bus decided to break, so our bus came to a halt in what felt like the middle of nowhere. A definite "Welcome to Ecuador!" We waited for about half an hour for another bus, and we finally made it, bags and all! I met my companion, Elder Denison, from Riverton, UT when we arrived. He is a great missionary, always ready to work!

Thursday was our first full day of working, and we taught some great lessons to some very humble people, who were ready to hear the Gospel. That's where the normal part ends... Because of the massive earthquake in Japan and ensuing Tsunami, we were evacuated from Machala to the mountainous city of Cuenca, three hours east of Machala by bus on Friday morning! We were able to see some of the news reports of the damage the quake and tsunami did. Luckily, since we're far enough away, the tsunami had dispersed and nothing happened in Machala. Yet another "Welcome to Ecuador!" We made it back to Machala Saturday morning and got right back to work!

The people here, both members and investigators, are great people. I know I'm definitely in a great place! It's been a little tough getting used to some things here, but it's becoming more and more normal every day!

Everything is fine here, so no need to worry! Glad to hear everything is fine at home, and I'm happy to hear everything is good with Chiaki's family. When I heard earthquake and Japan, I immediately thought of her and her family, I even said a few prayers.

P-Days here are on Monday, so I will write to you then!

Love you all!
Elder Cederquist

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