Dallin and His Amigos

We normally would have heard from Dallin on Mother’s Day.  We had Skype ready and we had his face on the screen.  After ten minutes of staring at him, the screen went black and he was gone.  He called us later for literally one minute and told us that widespread storms had knocked out the power throughout Honduras.  He said that power outages were normal.  He told us that he would call us the following week.  We were able to talk with him last Sunday (5/21).

It was great to talk with him.  We were surprised how mature he looks and he sounds great.  It was great to see that he is happy.  We enjoyed listening to his Spanish accent.  He speaks better Spanish than English.  He also indicated that he has been healthy for 4 months or so now and feels like he is used to the parasites down there. 

As of May 1st, Dallin is in Portreillos, Honduras.  Portreillos has a population of 25,000.  The area is rural and very spread out.  He is in the city itself, which has a population of 5,000.  Portreillos is about one hour north of San Pedro Sula.  Dallin said that members and non members alike are extremely kind.  He said it is interesting because many houses also double as a “restaurants” where people go and eat. 

As far as the ward goes, he said that the size is similar to US wards.  They receive a lot of help from the members and he says his Bishop does a great job serving the members.  In addition to his mission responsibilities, he has been playing the piano in conferences and during ward meetings.  They have been working hard and have many investigators to teach.

Dallin’s new companion is Elder Tahay from Quetzaltenango, Guatemala.  They get along very well and enjoy working together.  Dallin said he is very grateful because he has liked all his companions.  He and Elder Tahay are very grateful because they have to cook very few meals.  They are invited to people’s homes for both lunch and dinner.  Dallin lives in a duplex style apartment.  He says it is nice and they have access to a washer for which they are very happy.  He told us that the city is very safe.  It is very green and there are many rivers in the region.  Unfortunately, it is still very hot.  It is so hot that he had to buy long sleeve shirts because his arms constantly burning outweighed the desire to have short-sleeve dress shirts.  He says there is no other heat like Honduras.  The other feature they are grateful for in their house is that one of the rooms has an air conditioner in it.

Dallin mentioned a couple of fun facts.  He said that they went sightseeing and ran into some people from Saskatchewan.  He enjoyed seeing them and being able to speak English with them.  Right now, he speaks no English except when he is helping his companion learn English during language study each day.  He also mentioned that the ride into the city is very interesting.  They get in vans that are made for 12 but never have less than 20 in them.  He said it is quite an adventure.  According to Dallin, seat belts do not exist in Honduras.

Dallin expressed that he is grateful for serving his mission.  We asked him what his thoughts were and he said that there are moments when he stops and  realizes how blessed he is to be serving the people of Honduras.  In addition to teaching the Gospel, he has many opportunities to serve the people in ways that are crucial to their livelihood.  He spends a lot of time helping families with crops, gardens, and clearing out land to help sustain their families.  Dallin said that he has matured and learned more in 10 months than he would have learned here in years.  He wanted us to make sure that we said “hello” to everyone we could back in the States and to thank them for supporting him throughout his life.