But I met my mission president and wife, they seem like really nice people but they don't know any English so communication is a bit hard haha. After that, they made assignments for us and my first area where I am currently residing is.....NOGALES, MEXICO! My companion's name is Elder Hernandez, he's from Mexico City and is a way nice and friendly guy. We get along really well and he doesn't know much English but I've been teaching him English the past couple mornings for about an hour. He's super eager to learn and he helps me out with my Spanish a ton too. I'll try and include some pictures of us here at the bottom. Also, I'd say about 1/3 of the Elders here serving are fluent in English so I haven't had too much of a hard time communicating if I can't say it in Spanish yet.
Later on Monday, we took a six hour bus ride up here but I like this area a lot more than Hermosillo. It's a little cooler and not as big of a city, plus it's not straight-up flat desert land like it is in Hermosillo so I like the environment here more too. There's a lot of hills and we've been doing quite a bit of walking but I don't think it's that bad really.
We got dropped off at our apartment that night and it isn't exactly the nicest apartment I've ever been in haha. The floor is either cement with gloss or some hard tile. We have one little pad of carpet next to our bed to kneel on for prayer so yeah. Oh and the bathroom actually isn't that bad. It's pretty dirty but I mean we have indoor plumbing (the water isn't okay to drink though so we have to get those big blue water containers and drink out of that). There's no water heater so I've received the privilege of being able to take ice cold showers every morning. Next, the sink in the kitchen. There's probably a solid 10-20 bugs and flies around or on the sink at all times. It's some pretty nasty stuff so we just got some paper plates to use. We've got a fridge which is nice but no microwave to heat stuff up fast. But overall, it's not that bad of a place. I mean, a couch would be nice but chairs work just fine. Ohhh haha I forgot to mention that our apartment doesn't have AC or any type of cooling other than a cheap portable fan that you plug into the wall ! It's not like I needed to stay out of the heat anyways.
On Tuesday I got my first real taste of the city! The city is suuuuper cool. I feel like I'm on a whole other planet but in reality I'm only about 10 minutes away from the States, it's crazy. The buildings remind me of downtown Tucson but with more crazy paint colors and grafitti everywhere haha. Either way, I like it a lot and just the whole feel of the city is dope and the people are always walking or moving it seems like. The people here, let's see, they're all about 5'6"-5'8" and have pretty dark skin. They all seem genuine and they all stare because I'm a gringo haha. I've yet to see any other gringos(that aren't serving missions)/anyone as tall as me here so you can say that I stand out quite a bit. On another note, the women here are so fine. Haha. Every other girl here looks like she could be a model and I'm not saying that just because I've been secluded from the outside world for a while, but they really are ridiculously beautiful. My companion from Mexico City said that the girls here in the state of Sonora have a reputation for being some of the most attractive girls in Mexico so it's not just me that thinks that haha.
That day for lunch I got an authentic Mexican meal, grilled peppers with cheese, rice, beans, and a chicken cake (I don't know the name but it looked the same as crab cake but with chicken instead so that's what I'm going to call it). It was SOOO good. I absolutely love the food here haha. We went to a few stores after that they're basically the same as back home, only everything is way cheaper haha. They have almost everything you'd find in a walmart or maceys with the exception of brand names/cosmetic products.
If you're too lazy to read all of that, just know that I think this place is awesome and I can already tell that I'm going to love it. With the exception of not having some normal commodities (clean water, good housing, insane heat, etc.) everything has been going great for me! I've been growing a lot in the language and I love the culture too. I'm constantly covered in sweat but I've already gotten used to that so it's been all good.
Well, there's my thoughts about my first few days in Mexico! Continue to keep letting me know how things are back at home! I love you guys and hope everything is going super bien. Have an awesome week!
Love, Elder Thayne