Jordan's Mission Apartments

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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Holy Hand Grenade

Dear family,

if you are really worried about michael being skinny, i have acquired quite a bit of beef since being in malaysia (especially around the nether regions) and i'm sure we could arrange some sort of swap...anywho, we got some bad news this week in zone conference. the missionary department has put an end to the use of public gyms! NO!!! there goes any of my hopes of coming hope looking anything like i did before. it's ok, i've come to grips now that i'll just be hodoh dan gempal selama-lamanya.

in speaking of zone conference this last week, it was excellent! my interview with president was really good. he told me that i need to use more of an iron fist with my zone, rather than the velvet glove. maksudnya (meaning) that we need to kick our zone in the rear and get it going. elder kunioka and i also got to give a leadership training to all of the district leaders in our zone. i thought it went fantastic. we did it on commitments and how to be more bold. it tied in perfectly with the assistant's training the next day which was also on committing people. good stuff.

oh, before i forget, if you could send me some more Red Zone, i would much appreciate it. i'm down to my last one.

futsol was also a hit. and not to brag or anything, but 'yours truly' had quite a few goals and tore apart the defense. but i was so sore i could barely walk the next day. i took quite a few kicks to the shins and knees... well, i guess i'll answer your questions:

1. (Mom asked about sending the Conference Report, Would you get it any quicker that way?) we usually do get a conference report, but it's a hit or miss type thing and we only get one for the whole apartment, so if you could sent one, that would be great! thanks. i'm so pumped for conference. it gets better every time!

2. (What the heck does assalamwailekum mean?) assalamwailekum is the greeting that muslims say to each other. as an orang putih (white person), it's not very good to say it to a muslim... but i often do it anyway.

3. (Any additional help on the tree house picture?) i'm not exactly sure what picture you're talking about, but i think it's probably at a place called Taman Jubli in Sibu. it's the only hill in all of sibu, but it's pretty sweet because they built that big old look out tower and you can see all of sibu. we did that my last p-day there. i don't know if i sent it to you, but that's really close to the same place where i got the pictures with the head hunter skulls... if you haven't seen those, ask chelsie. i sent some to her. and i'll be sending my SD card home soon because it's full.

Note from Dad: Whitney received these pictures from her pen pal, Elder Semana, who is featured in both pictures (holding the skulls from the head hunters in the Isle of Borneo, Sibu). So we tried to describe them to Jordan to get some info.
4. (Shot list, do you have it?) i don't know if i do, but i'll dig through my documents and see what i can find. i know i had to get tb and i took the typhoid pills.

5. (Are there any Micronesians in your area and do any of your natives drink Kava?) the only micronesian here is elder kunioka. he's only about 5'8" and he too likes to beat up on his companion... just kidding, i could take him. but the ibans do have a drink that they call "air tua(EYE-EAR TOO-AH)" which is rice whine. they get hammered on that stuff and do really stupid things... like give each other tattoos. whenever you see an iban with stick figure tattoos or some other dumb picture that looks like a 3 year old drew it, he's been getting down with the Tua.

oh yeah, i don't know if i ever told you this, but Orangutan is actually malay. but it's not pronounced like americans say it. Orang means person, and utan is short for hutan which means jungle. Jungle person! i was so pumped when i figured that out.

so, it's april already. i definitely didn't see that coming. that means that E. Kunioka only has 3 weeks left! it hasn't really hit him yet, which is good, because our area is on fire at the moment and the last thing we need is a trunky missionary. but he'll stick it out. i don't know if his parents emailed you back yet, but he said they did get your email. well, our hopes of elder palfreyman finishing here in KK aren't looking good. he was just made zone leader in singapore, and his companion goes home with e.Kunioka, so he probably isn't getting transferred. bummer, but it'll be exciting to see who my new companion will be.

anywho, the work is going really well and we'll have a baptism this week! right now we've got people set on date for every week in april. there's a lot a amazing things going on here. the Lord blesses you when you're willing to work.

i love you all,
elder troxel

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Biasanya (ordinary, usually)

keluargaku (family),

selamat pagi (good morning)! assalamwailekum! thank you for the emails this week. they were good. it's good to hear that everyone is doing well. today and tomorrow is zone conference here, so we've got all the missionaries from sabah staying in our house today and tomorrow. i'm way pumped, because right after this, we're going to go play futsol as our zone activity. i'm sure that we all remember how talented i am at soccer... the last time i think i was on a soccer field was when i was walking off with a shattered, bloody face. i'm hoping for some better luck today... (but lets also remember that i had two goals in that game!)

this week is, once again, pretty crazy what with zone conference and all. but thus far it's been really good. we're on pace to have our best week of teaching yet (as far as numbers go), even with the two days not being able to have any appointments. we went on splits yesterday with some prospective missionaries and had a lot of fantastic lessons.

we also had a couple baptisms, and one was for a future Melchizedek priesthood holder! the branch here is really hurting for priesthood.

so in answer to your questions:

1. (Is Elder Palfreyman working in the office or were your visa runs at the same time?) yes, elder palfreyman has been in the office for quite awhile now. almost 4 months i think... maybe not quite that long. he's been a really good office elder, but rumor has it that he's leaving soon. i'm not sure what the exact responsibilities of an office elder are, but they have a lot to do, especially lately because the office couple is going home soon, so they've been having to learn how to do all the things that the couple does.

2. (Can you check to see if your companions parents received our email?) yes, i can.

sorry, i don't really have all that much to say this week. i'm still alive, busy, and loving the work. tell everyone that i send my love!

elder troxel

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Robbie's package!

Keluargaku (family),

apa khabar? (what's happening) whoa, what a crazy week it seems that you've all had. so, dan is finally getting hitched... and to family, no less. good good. when is he getting married? you may want to ask him if he's willing to wait until next february... just kidding, but i wish i could be there for it. tell him congratulations for me. in speaking of christensens, what is ariel up to? is she married too? i got a list of girls from elder morley today of all the girls that he knew were engaged/married. he said that Brianna Reynolds (i don't know if you know her, but she's a way awesome girl) is engaged to Matt Reynolds! you've gotta love Timpview marriages. how is michael's pursuit going by the way? it was good to hear a few weeks back that he'd been on a few dates.

don't feel bad dad, i've also come to the realization that my movie quoting abilities aren't quite up to par. they've atrophied quite a bit, along with my upper body actually. but i've improved in a lot of other areas- such as my scriptural knowledge, and i even managed to beat elder palfreyman in a game of scripture golf this morning! baby! oh yeah, i'm in singapore right now. i really don't like coming here, but it's been a lot more enjoyable this time because i've gotten to go out with elder palfreyman. it's crazy that he dies in four months! and after him, my days are also limited... it's sad business.

this last week was a good one as far as the work goes, except we suffered a few set backs- we should be having 6 or 7 baptisms this saturday, but the two couples have only been to church twice and aren't ready anyway, and we just barely found out that one of the other girls who was set on date for this week's IC (identification card) says "muslim" on it. NO!!!!!!!!! that is the worst!that would've been helpful to know about a month and a half ago. it's really sad, because she's gold, but laws are laws. she is going to try and get it changed, but that can take years to do. but we'll still have two on saturday, which will be really good. and one of them will be a priesthood holder! that's what this branch is really hurting for- more priesthood. i'm really excited for our area. there's a lot of really good things going on right now. in the not too distant future, we'll be back in the groove of have baptisms every week. good stuff.

so, since you didn't have any questions for me, i've got a few of my own:

1. what's going on with "the office?"

2. do we have a nintendo Wii yet?

3. is there any other way to send me that video clip? because youtube is definitely not approved...

i think that's all of them. oh, i did draw out 200 sing dollars from my checking account today. i don't know how much that is in USD, but i think it's like 100 or so. probably more. but i received an epic package from elder Wobbie Larson yesterday! he sent me a weird t-shirt, but it was pretty awesome. i've been wanting to write to him, but i haven't had his address.

welp, i'm pretty sure i've run out of things to say. i'm still healthy and happy... and fat. i love you all. stay safe.

elder troxel

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Sibuk Bah!

dear family,

well, this week has been fantastic. my first baptism in KK! we had a baptism for a girl named Erna on sunday. we had a member perform the baptism (which is good) and it took him 7 TRIES to get her all the way under (which isn't so good)! but it was funny after all was said and done. the most besides times i've seen besides that was 3 tries. eventually he did get her all the way under and she was able to be confirmed in sacrament meeting.

we just barely got back from doing exchanges in tawau. we left yesterday morning and got back this morning at about 11:30. but the next three weeks are going to be crazy. because of exchanges, we've got a shortened week this week. zone conference isn't for two more weeks, but we'll have to get everything done and ready for zone conference this week, because i fly out for singapore on tuesday, get back on thursday night, and friday morning we fly to sandakan to do a training and exchanges. then the next week will be zone conference, so it will be quite awhile before we can just have a nice normal week of teaching. by the time we get another normal week, it will be just a few weeks until elder kunioka goes home. CRAZY!

i got an exciting call from elder palfreyman this last week. apparently in his interview with president skelton, president asked him if there was anything that he especially wanted in his last 4 months in the mission; he wanted to request that we be made companions agian, but he wussed out. anywho, president asked him if he would be willing to fulfill a leadership position, to which he of course responded yes, and president told him that he would be out of the office in about a month. the next change in leadership is when elder kunioka goes home, so it's possible that elder palfreyman and i could be companions again for his last few months. that would be sweet. but who knows, it's all just speculation.

i got an email from chelsie today, and she told me she has been getting over a concussion! heavens to betsy, what happened?! she didn't tell me, but i'm sure that there is probably a humorous story behind that... but it was good to hear from her.

i've heard through the grape vine that almost everybody is married or engaged back home. nick wrote me and was bummed that everyone we knew is going to probably have kids by the time we get home. no worries, i've already made up my mind that i'm not going home :) but at least i've got a LONG time before i have to deal with those stresses.
anywho, mom had a couple of questions:

1. dang it! i totally forgot to get a picture of the outside of the house. i kept telling myself i needed to take one, but i always forgot. i'll give E. watkins a call and tell him to take one and send it to me.

2. i'm not exactly sure what you mean, but there was an elder (neiderhauser) who was going home in mid-february. he had been here in KK for quite awhile, and they needed to get someone familiar with the area, so they transferred elder Gulbrandsen here is December. i don't know why, but president decided that he wanted e.gul in bintulu the week before went home. then they transferred e.kuni here, because he'd already been here and knows the branch and the area. that's why it was only a half whitewash, because even though we both came in at almost the same time, elder kunioka already knew the area and the members, just not the investigators.

i hope that all made sense. but the work continues here in KK. this last week we really were able to do some good work. we've got quite a few people on date for baptism, our teaching pool is really strong, and the members trust us. but just when things are looking so good, we have all this traveling and everything else has to go on the back-burners for awhile. it's fun though. by the time my mission is over, i should have been on well over 100 airplane flights. i love being a missionary so much! holy moley, rittmanic hits his year mark this month! and andrew is practically dead! whoa. the only time it hits me how fast time is going is on wednesdays when i hear from everybody.

thank you everyone for the emails this week. they were really good. i especially liked the great race theme in mom and dad's email. and dad's mustache quote almost made me bust a gut. good form. i love you all

elder troxel

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

now this grinder of yours... is it a real grinder, or some sort of metaphor?

dear family,

i know how mom feels; i don't know what happened to february, but i think i missed it. i cannot believe it's already march. elder Kunioka goes home next month! he's in the same group as elder Crofts, who is my grandfather. after they go home, it's only 3 months until elder palfreyman goes home, and by that time i've only got 6 months to go. when you start to realize that one day you're actually going to go home, it makes you want to work a lot harder, and then the harder you work, the faster the time goes... maybe i should try not working as hard.

sabah is still great. we're going to have our first baptism here this sunday, and then we should have one every week until elder kunioka goes home. i don't know if i told you, but his parents are coming here to pick him up, so they might be the ones you should talk to about costs of flights and things, because i haven't the foggiest. here is their info:

Kevin and Lisa Kunioka

i guess they've already met and had dinner with the parents of some of his other companions, so i'm sure they'd love to meet you. you will actually probably be able to meet elder kunioka in not too long. crazy.but anywho, this week was good. we ended up not having to fly out to sandakan, because the Morrey's got their passports back. but i did get to do two other interviews this week. i was kinda nervous, because i'd never done one before, but they both were really good and it was fun.

elder kunioka and i will be flying out to tawau next week on tuesday and to sandakan the week after that to do exchanges and give some trainings. we did a training yesterday with the other elders and the douglas's. it was pretty much about D&C 33:7-9 and alma 26:5. i really enjoy giving trainings. i learn so much preparing them.

so here's the answers to your questions:

1. i'm not sure the cost, but i'll try and find out. if you can get in touch with elder kunioka's parents though, they'll probably know. if do end up coming, i'd either want you to go to KL or here to KK. probably here, because it is gorgeous here, but there's a lot more things to do in KL... we'll see.

2. yeah, you can take buses from singapore to KL, but that may not be the path you want... it's like 6 hours i think. if you do though, there's plenty of buses that go that way.

it's good to hear that michael is out and dating. PRAYERS ARE ANSWERED! just continue to work it bro. be bold. as he would say, "keeps doin yo thang, you know, yo thug thizzle out there."that's pretty much all i can think of... oh yeah, if you could email me another copy of my line of authority, that would be great. i ordained a guy last week and i'd really like to give him one.

i love you all.
elder troxel
KK, Sabah, Borneo

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