April 7, 2014

After the Quake

Wow wow wow, this week needs to be taken one day at a time.

MONDAY: So last P-day was super relaxing, but right after lunch, I felt really sick. Remember when I had to take Prilosec before the mission? Well, I have to take it again. But since I've been taking it, I've been feeling better.

TUESDAY: So we had to travel to Copiapó for visa work for Hermana Carranza. They told us that we were gonna leave around 8, but then called again and said that we were leaving at 6. All was good, we left and got to Copiapó without any problems. When we hopped in the taxi to go the sister's house that we were gonna stay with in Copiapó, we heard stuff on the radio talking about a TERREMOTO (remember the Spanish lesson??? A terremoto is any earthquake above 6 on the Richter scale) and tsunami warnings. We asked what was going on, and the taxi driver told us that there was a terremoto in Iquique and Arica, 8.5. Then Elder Peralta (District Leader) called us and told us that Taltal also had tsunami warnings and that they were trying to find a place to stay, but not to worry (thanks). We were pretty worried, but the office Elders were calling everyone to see where we were.....

WEDNESDAY: Well, everything went okay in the morning for Hermana Carranza's visa. We walked around Copiapó a bit, and then went to the bus station to wait for our bus that supposedly left at 3:15 (left at 4 just FYI). Every tv and radio in Chile had news about the terremoto in Iquique. We had called the Elder's in the morning to see if Taltal was all good to come home too (would we have a house when we got back?!?! haha), and they said everything was fine. So we finally got on the bus and all was good for the rest of the night. We got home around 9 and everything was calm...

THURSDAY: When we went to bed Wednesday night, exactly at midnight, I woke up because I thought I heard a cat walking around on the roof. And the neighbors were making all kinds of noises. Then WHOOOOOOOOOOA....Tsunami warning. Oh you have no idea how fast we left our house. That cat? No, that was an earthquake. Another terremoto in Iquique, 8.2. How I didn't feel it, who knows, but as soon as that siren went off, we booked it out of our house. The Elder's called us to go to their house, and once we got there, we headed on over to a member's house. My heart was beating so fast. These Chilean's are just so calm...they are used to that kind of thing. Well I wasn't. But we couldn't stay with that member because their house isn't above the linea de seguridad (what would that be in English??), so we headed on over to the Relief Society President's house, and stayed there for the night. Well, we couldn't really sleep. Elder Peralta was saying how good it was that we headed to Copiapó the day before, because they were literally running around stressed out looking for a member to stay with. And it really was a blessing, how God took care of us. How we were gonna leave at 8 (when the terremoto happened), but that changed to 6. And how I barely got out of Iquique before all this happened...oh boy I am blessed. God knows that I'd probably not be able to handle too much of that. Hermana Quispe said that some buildings in our sector are practically on the ground, a lot of people are camping up on the mountains. Poor Iquique.

FRIDAY: Friday was a lot more calm. We painted a house that morning, had English Class, Seminary, and Mutual that night. But during mutual, they called for transfers. Hermana Carranza and I were so sure that we were both staying...no. Guess what. I'm getting transferred out of Taltal :( :( :( I really do not wanna leave. 6 weeks in one sector is NOT enough. But I'm finally heading to Antofagasta. Get this, I'm gonna be with my "sister". Her trainer is Hermana García as well! And Hermana García is headed to Iquique, but they took all the sister missionaries out of Iquique for like 2 weeks, so I'll be with my mamá and sister for two weeks! Hahaha crazy. I am excited to go to Antofagasta, but I really am having a hard time leaving Taltal. It really is the best place to be in the whole mission. Elder Peralta and Elder Preston even get to stay, and they've already been here 3 and 2 cambios! Sad, but I gotta trust that the Lord needs me in Antofa now. Again, we had to sleep in the members house until President says its okay to go back home....so we all headed there again.

SATURDAY: General Conference!!!!! Wooo, love it. I noticed that there was a lot of talking about faith and defending your beliefs. I was able to watch in English :) Yay. Saturday was super calm as well, but we still had to sleep in the members house...

SUNDAY: The Elders called in the morning telling us that now we can go back home and sleep in our own beds. Yay!!! General Conference was also good, obviously, but I had to watch it in Spanish. Don't know why, but that's how it was. It's just not the same, but still learned a lot.

TODAY: Well, finished packing today. I really don't know what I'm gonna do when I go home. Ugh. I hate packing. I leave Taltal around 3:30 today, so I should be getting to Antofagasta around 7. 

That was my super exciting week. Who knew that I would be part of a huge earthquake.....and tsunami. I'm still a little nervous everytime something moves, but Taltal (and supposedly Antofagasta) is pure rock, so you feel the earthquake, but not much damage happens. But be sure to pray for the people of Iquique and Arica especially, they had the worst part of it. I hope all is well over there! Keep safe :)

Hermana Howell


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