Sunday, March 4, 2012


Once every 12 full moons there comes a time of special celebration here in Mendoza known throughout the vineyard capital as "Vendimia". The word means "grape harvest" and I don't really know where it comes from or why they celebrate it here but they have festivals for pretty much every other fruit (there was a plum festival when I was in my first area) so why shouldn't they have one for grapes as well? --especially because that's what Mendoza is known for. Like I said, I don't know who planned the details of how to celebrate it, but somehow they fit in a kind of Ms. Mendoza pageant as a central focus. The preparations for this big party start somewhere in February when all of the departments in Mendoza (aka different sections of the city) and other outlaying cities (like Alvear where my first area was) select a queen who will represent their city or department. Later in February, posters of said representatives start lining the streets, filling bus windows and probably also filling the trash because they're just everywhere. I'm not really sure but I've heard it's possible that the city or departments get money if their queen wins, hence the propaganda.

Anyways, pretty much all of that is just build up to this giant parade that happened today. Since today is our p-day, and since the parade goes right in front president's house, and since he invited us over to watch it, that's what we did today. There were a ton of floats. I think each queen had a float but there were also a lot who didn't seem to really have a purpose other than to be a cool float in a parade. The coolest/strangest part about the whole parade is mostly all they do is throw fruit to the people on the streets. Like almost every float had something to throw out. People usually bring buckets to catch it all in. We got some grapes, apples, peaches, pears, plums, and a bag of noodles. haha. There were also a ton of dancers, I can't imagine how they survived because I was almost dying watching them from the shade. And at the very end there were about a million "gauchos" on horses. The whole thing was quite the showdown.

So, besides that slight excitement, things in the offices have been super busy. The end of the transfer is coming right up and I still feel like there's a million things to put in order and get ready to pass down to Elder Wheeler. We're in the middle of making some pretty big changes in the report we send to the missionaries about how the mission/zones are doing because right now pretty much no one reads it or gives it any importance. It's gonna be a little bit of work to get it off the ground but I think once we get it going it'll be pretty cool.

Things with investigators didn't go so great this week. Rusbel called us on Monday and said he wanted to get baptized but then we could never get in contact with him (we still haven't gotten in contact) and we're kinda thinking he might have gone back to Peru a little earlier that he was expecting because school is starting up soon for him. And, Eduardo didn't get back to his house on time when we had an appointment with him so he's kinda gone back to the same super-hard-to-find-and-teach status he's been at for so long. So hopefully we can get back in contact with him next week and he'll get baptized this month.

Welp family,

With all the love of a bucket of fruit,

Elder Lounsbury

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