Monday, March 7, 2011

English Congregation!!!

So in case you didnt hear this from me, as of this week, we are no longer "el groupo ingles" we are now officially, "la congregacion de la ciudad autonoma de Buenos Aires, inglesa" in other words...the Buenos Aires English Congregation!!!  

Needless to say we were all shocked by the announcement, but it was the most pleasant shock ever! This is especially true, considering that we only had a 1 week gap between the CO visit, and our letter coming back. 

This is the culmination of the years of hard work of so many brothers and sisters. Some of them, like Daniel, and Amalia, have been here the whole time, some of us have been part of the group for a number of years (Bret, Abby, Gilda, Jessica, and Me [more or less]) and others are recent additions. Along the way we also had a lot from help from those who are no longer with us, having moved on (Rodrigo Diaz, Crystal, Jon) and many others who have all played parts large and small in helping us reach this point. 

Now we have a great congregation with an amazing core of brothers and sisters who are going to be here to help out. In addition to our congregation letter, we also recieved happy news that we have a new elder serving in our congregation. 

All in all our total make up of our hall is roughly:

6 elders, 8 servants, 16 or so pioneers, and nearly 50 pubs (now I know a bunch of you are going to comment and correct these figures...please do, I will edit them and repost this). So we are off to a great start. 

Photo Time: 

P.S. Thanks to Gilda for typing out everyone's names in the photo, and for our Canadian visitors for taking the picture for us all. We miss the few brothers that could not be there for the picture, but we all know we are not complete without you. Also I am in the middle/back right see if you can see my "Beeker-esque" looking head sticking up.

Although there are some important people missing this is almost the whole group.
From left to right and front to back

1)Chris-Xerxes-Carlos-Nancy-Chacho-Caro( y sus niƱas)
2)Suzanne- Fernando-Travis-Danielle-Mariana-Ryan-Gilda
3)Julie-Cyntia-Estefania-Laura-(Girl from Belgium, dont remember her name:s)-Damaris
6)Justin-(some people i dont see )Marcelo-Joe(the blond baby)-Nick-Garrett-Daniel
Back: Meli,Sebas,Ema,Brad and his baby,Dani standing on the left.

Another shot from the other week of us in service. We already sent away about 8 people when this was taken. So add them in there, and you get one awesome group for Saturday service!

Monday, February 14, 2011

How a BsAs Pickpocket Made my Day

Usually when bad things happen to you, and you go through the normal progression of emotions. In the case of something stealing something from you, I usually notice that I follow a pretty standard pattern. Shock, disbelief, anger, etc... However the other day I noticed that in addition to experiencing the normal emotional trip that comes along with someone stealing a piece of your property, I in fact found myself feeling something completely different.

I had taken the Teschs and Janelle (Batavia Congregation) out for lunch at one of my favorite Pizza places (Kentucky Pizza in case your wondering). Afterward, we all got on the subway together to head back to our respective dwellings.

Now normally I try to not stick out too much as a foreigner for safety/not wanting to get jacked reasons. However being with some quite "Gringo-y looking people" from back home (sorry Mike) and being quite excited by their presence, I was not my normal on-guard self.

As we walked onto the subway, I noticed some people trying to make fun of us in their poor English (Dont make fun of me speaking English if you cant yourself) as I turned around to say something to them, I noticed that someone had hit my back pocket (where my wallet was). Immediately I reached back to make sure it was still there. After confirming that it was, I began to check rest of the "Holy Trinity of personal effects": Phone, Wallet, Keys. When I got to my phone however, I noticed that my phone was gone!

As I tried to figure out what was going on, I saw right in front of me this suspicious looking "Chabon" that with a nervous look on his face was putting something into his messenger bag. At that moment the train started moving and I had about 90 seconds to decide what to do before we got to the next stop. As I started contemplating how I was going to explain in my poor Spanish to the Police after I punched this guy and took my phone back why I did so, it suddenly hit me...I was actually happy this guy had liberated my phone from me.

Pleased to be Liberated From my Phone

The phone i had been using here was my old phone from a few years ago. I had kept it because I liked the idea of having a junkie phone to use while in Argentina on my first trips here. Recently before I left the States, I broke down and jumped on the bandwagon and got an iPhone.

After being here for a while i started to remember why I hated this phone...because it worked downright terribly.  This dumb thing would randomly turn off in the middle of a call, fail to receive or send texts, along with a host of other annoying activities.

I would have switched over to the iPhone sooner, but Apple despite having completly won over my favor with its stellar technological engineering, is still an evil empire that resolves to restrict every intended use of its devises...including what carrier you use their phones on.

But as always...there is an army of dedicated, lifeless nerds out there that work night and day to help people like me, who need to "jailbreak" their phones, and "unlock" them for use on other carriers. The process is however quite complicated, and required a great deal of research to figure out exactly how to complete the process.

Where I Realize That I am Rambling on About Something Stupid....

Anyways I am feeling like I am getting off point here a bit (lay off me its my first post in nearly 2 months). Basically what the thieving little hooligan did, is force me to go home, and figure out what went wrong with my initial efforts to get my iPhone working.

And to my great pleasure, it worked perfectly! I figured out what was wrong with my phone, and within 2 hours I had a new number, and was using my phone. Now I walk around the city, with my trendy iPhone in hand, and feel like i truly fit in with the rest of the skinny jeans wearing, scarf tying, Zara style embracing "Chetos" where I live. (well maybe with out

So in the end what does that incident teach me? That sometimes instead of letting a terrible event sap all of your joy, sometimes its possible for you to find a positive even among the bad...

P.S. One of the greatest uses for an iPhone, is finding ways to waste I present the greatest of my work...ever completed in the subway.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Random Pictures From BA Life...

Sometimes you got to get some rest wherever you can...Such as here, while I was waiting for Abby to come and meet me for some calls.

Getting caught in the rain has never been so fun. I was going for the Heavy Hitter look here. I swapped the Cigar for a churro...which I think it better.

Our Pioneers (save for the 2 who went to the bathroom during the photoshoot) after our annual Pioneer Meeting. Since then we have gained another 4 pioneers.