Tuesday, September 29, 2009

sept 29, 09

Re: RE: singapore‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/29/09 9:11 PM
To: wodenowl@xxxxxxx.xxx
haha that was a silly french story. did you make that up on the spot? did you use that
for your classes? how are the classes coming? mom says your french club is doing well.
i'm glad to hear that. wish i could be there to help you out, but maybe i'll be able
to sometime later. hopefully my french sticks. haha. i cant believe they sent elder
tyler's letter to you! haha. when we got to singapore for the first time, my mission
president thought i was elder tyler. it's funny to see that they mixed it up again!
i dont really know how much i told you about when we went to singapore, but there
were 16 of us newbies from the mtc, which is the biggest group the mission has ever
gotten at one time. anyways, so the mission president had all of our trainers come
and meet us and we had some training with them. that was really cool being together
with so many missionaries and learning about how to teach the gospel better. those
are some of the best times i have. but it's definitely the best while teaching
someone where you can tell what you are saying is changing their life. that is the
coolest experience i have ever had. the people here are really amazing. i wish you
could meet them dad. they are so funny. i really like the experience of seeing how
the church works in a different part of the world, especially since the church here
is so young. it is a really interesting experience. the other day we ran into a
white guy while tracting, and i remember thinking how weird it was to see a white
person. haha. everyone who sees me tho is like "orang putih!" which means white
person. it's funny. also, they call english "white person language. oh man i love it
here. is georgia realy that jungly? i am still amazed every day at the amount of
plant life there is here. about the blow gun, i may get one later in the mission.
you can get pretty cheaply made ones for like 20 ringgit, or really nice ones for
like 300. i dont really know what to do about souvenirs. i'm not thinking i'll get
much. do you have any suggestions about things like that? i'm so inexperienced i
just don't know what to do haha. thanks for the words of support dad. i really
appreciate everything you and mom do for me. know that you are always in my prayers.
i love you all.

love zac

Re: ‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/29/09 8:59 PM
To: quiltingqueen57@xxxxxxx.xxx
hey ma! yeah i am doing really well. i'm getting used to everything here pretty well now. i'm even starting to be able to understand people on the phone now, which is nice. it's still a little tough to understand people sometimes, but i feel like it's getting much better. as for investigators, we're kind of low at the moment. we have 3 people getting baptized this saturday tho. that is really exciting. the family is really awesome. i love meeting with them and teaching them. i accidently stored my baptismal pants in singapore, so i'll have to wait til i go back to singapore til i can get them. that'll be anywhere from 2-4 months. but what can you do. i think the other missionaries would let me borrow them if i needed them. but on saturday my companion will be doing the actual baptisms. i'm excited dad has a sizeable french club. i wish i had helped him out more with it. maybe when i get back i'll be able to some time. about the souvenirs, i'm not exactly sure how many i'll get. stuff is fairly cheap, but i don't know what exactly is worth getting and all that, you know? i think i'm going to wait a while before i get anything for myself at least, so i can figure things out a little better. i'm still trying to adjust to everything. but you're pretty lucky it'll get to 70's. it never cools down here. lol. but i like it. even when they serve me piping hot chocolate i enjoy it. we had zone conference last week and it was really good. they taught us about the steps to receive revelation, and told us that we need to work with revelation or we will never be as effective as we could be, so this week we've been working pretty hard. we're working with the members to try to get referrals. i never really realized how important referrals were to the work until i came out on the mission. i really like to teach people and testify to them. it feels so good to have that witness that what you are saying is true. i'm sorry about all the working you've been doing mom. how are you feeling? i hope you are taking care of yourself. i pray fro you and dad every night. i trust everything is well with you. have you been doing anything together lately besides all the movies? i'm glad to hear you're taking a class at jo anns. that sounds really fun for you. tell jared and amber congrats for me, and tell brittanie and matt to keep trying! haha. how is jake doing by the way? i've asked a couple people and no one tells me. but it's ok. well, i gotta let you go mom. i love you and hope you are doing well. talk to you next week.
love zac

From: Janice Hill
To: Zac Hill
Date: Tue, 29 Sep 2009 21:12:36 -0700

Just have to tell you in case you're still on. Ashley Blevins is getting married in
December. Just found out today. Thought you'd like to know.
Love Mom

Re: ‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/29/09 9:23 PM
To: quiltingqueen57@xxxxxxx.xxx

wow i didnt really think i'd find out about someone getting married while i was out
here. i thought i didn't really know anyone. that's funny. thanks for thinking of me
mom :) take care!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

letters home 23 sept. 09

Re: RE: singapore‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@xxxxxx.xxx)
Sent: Wed 9/23/09 8:53 PM
To: wodenowl@hotmail.com

hey dad
it's good to hear from you. i'm glad you like your french classes this year. i really
wish i had a chance to speak more french. i talk to myself in french sometimes when we
are riding in between appointments, but it's tough sometimes because malay words just
come out in a french accent every so often. it's gonna be pretty silly when i try to
speak when i get home. i feel like i still remember a good amount but it's only been
a few months. i can really see why people hold their mission experiences so close to
them tho. this is the hardest but funnest thing i've ever done. i tell you, it's
such an experience! i never wouldve dreamed it would be like this. i cant even
really describe everything that happens. i wish i had more to tell you, but it's
hard to remember at times. when i get back and i get talking about it i'm sure ill
have good stories. we've been listening to a bunch of christmas tunes at the house,
and everyone really likes the grinch song. we hear it at least 3 times a day. haha.
everyone just cant wait til christmas. they tell me that all the members feed you
beyond belief then. when we go to peoples houses, they wont let you leave til youve
eaten all the food theyve prepared. it's pretty nuts to be honest. this family
always makes a whole loaf of jelly sandwiches for us and makes us eat them all so
needless to say i can eat jelly now. tell mom to take it easy. she needs to take
care of herself. but i really appreciate the french story you sent me. i love to
test out my french. thanks for everything you do for me dad. sorry this letter is so
short, but it's zone conference day today and there's not much time to email.
anyways, i'll be able to talk to you next week.
i love you dad

Re: ‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Wed 9/23/09 8:46 PM
To: quiltingqueen57@xxxxxxx.xxx
hey ma
our area is a little slow at the moment so we're going out tracting a lot to try to pick up some new investigators. we have one family scheduled for baptism the first saturday in october, and they are keeping all there commitments so it looks really good. they are such a cool family. they love having us over. the mom was telling us that when she saw my companion and his previous comp going around their neighborhood she knew she wanted to listen to them and here she is about to get baptized! i tell you the mission has some of the best spiritual experiences ever. testifying to people is so great. you can just feel within yourself that what you are saying is true, and that the people you are teaching will recognize it, whether they choose to follow or not. it's a really special experience. i'm starting to understand why everyone talks about their missions like they do. about the bugs, theyre everywhere! i get bitten so many times a day by crazy mosquitos. i have a few on my face too! but im getting used to it. hopefully soon i wont even notice anymore. the spider arent too bad here. there's lots of little ones, but not too many big ones. they have some pretty big scorpions which is crazy. i ran one over on my bike the other day. haha. i hope you and dad are having fun without all of us there. have you watched anything cool lately? oh and i havent gotten any letters yet. if i start getting too many emails i really might not be able to respond to them all. i only get 1 hour talking to everybody, so i'd have to keep everything really short. that's really cool that adrienne is coming tho. that should be fun. jameson is gonna be so old when i get back. haha. but time is really flying here. can you believe i've almost been gone for three months? hopefully late october ill finish my training. the people here dont really celebrate halloween so i'll probably just buy myself a ton of candy. mmmm! how is work going by the way? are you feeling ok? dont be too hard on yourself. it's funny because sometimes i think about the time back home and dad starts work like right as i'm preparing for bed. i dont really even feel that far away tho. malaysia is realy cool. have you gotten any pics from me yet? i put some pictures on our retired couples pc and they said they'd send some. let me know how that goes. the retired couple, the youngs, are so good to us. they really take care of us. i'm glad to have them here. anyways, i dont have much time so i'll talk to you later ma!
i love you so much and take care!
love, zac

letter from the missionaries downstairs

I am not really senile - Read this one first.‏
From: Nancy Young (nancycyoung44@xxxxxxx.xxx)
Sent: Wed 9/23/09 3:48 AM
To: wodenowl@xxxxxxx.xxx

Dear Br. and Sister Hill,
I am so embarrassed!!
I was writing Elder Tyler's parents and at the wrong address and sent it to you.
Please delete all three of those and read this one about your son.
We are the senior couple that are working in Kuching with Elder Hill. No we are not infirm and senile. I was just trying to get these off to the parents of the two new Elders before it got any later and looked at the wrong email address. We are so pleased to have the opportunity to work with your son Elder Hill. His enthusiasm for the work, even riding his bike, is very contagious. He is really doing well and working so hard. He brings a maturity to the group that is very helpful, yet is very teachable. He has great imput at district meetings and is very focused on the work. The elders live in an apartment just upstairs from us and it is so nice to see them each day as they go out or come home. Elder Hill is so polite and appreciative of all that we do, which isn't very much. You have raised a young man who will be a great missionary.
He was going to send you some pictures, but they don't have alot of time when emailing so I told him I would be happy to do that for him. He downloaded some on to the computer and said just send a few at a time. I picked what I thought was a good represetation for you. I will have to send them in two or three emails as they take up alot of room.
The first one is of the apartment we all live in. As you can see it is very nice and comfortable. His apartment is on the top floor on the right. It starts at the far end of the brown and goes all the way over and back. His bedroom is the back two windows. It is very safe here.
The next is of the four elders that live together in a district. The first, Elder Rajah, is from Australia and is of Sri Lankan decent and is your son's companion. He is a fine elder and will be a great trainer for elder Hill. The next is Elder Herbst, and is the district leader. He is from Salmon, Idaho. The next, I believe you know. and the last is Elder Tyler who came out with your son from the MTC. He is from Jackson Hole, Wyo. They are a great foursome. All very hard workers and obedient.
The next picture is of the jungle behind our apartment that we get to look out on everyday from our living room windows.
We are so greatful for the opportunity to work with Elder Hill. Thanks for helping him prepare for his mission. He is going to be a great missionary and leader, I am sure.We have had 5 sons serve missions, and though it didn't happen very often or with all of them, anytime I got word from someone who had been with them, it made me very happy. Please rest assured, Elder Hill is doing well and is happy in the work.
We are from Fillmore, Utah and have been here almost 14 months now. We love it here. These people are very humble and teachable, the natives that is, which is who he will be working with.
Thanks for sharing your son with us,
Elder and Sister Young
Nancy Young

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

three letters in one day

Re: RE: singapore‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/15/09 8:55 PM
To: wodenowl@hotmail.com
hey dad! it's so good to talk to you! haha yeah its funny you mention blow guns because
the trainers i live with both have them and shoot them around the house, so i feel
like indiana jones when i'm getting up in the morning! haha i'm glad nyssa made it. of
course jake would say that road is cursed haha. jakes crazy. how is he by the way? are
his kidneys doing better? i havent really heard much from or about him. but anyways,
yeah i really do need to use the sun block. i havent been because it has been mostly
cloudy, but i got burned the other day and it's not fun. the sun isnt nearly as
intense here as it feels in vegas tho. my skin was red but it didnt hurt. im planning
on getting some sun screen today tho. i need some insect repellant as well because
i'm getting eaten alive! haha i have two bites on my palm, which makes it fun to ride
my bike. oh man, the mission is so fun tho. testifying to people is the best. i
really wish i did it more before my mission. i feel like going on the mission is
making me better in so many ways. i can actually talk on the phone now, which is
pretty nice. my comp makes me call the people in malay, which is pretty scary because
sometimes i have no idea what people are saying, but it is fun. also, im getting
exposed to unusual foods, so i think when i get back ill be able to eat pretty much
anything. i can handle vegetable with almost no problem now! yeah i kind of feel
like my trainer's puppy sometimes as weel like you did. my companion is still fairly
young for a missionary tho. i kind of feel like you, because there are some
differences between malay and indonesian, so sometimes its hard to understand the
people. i think yours was worse tho, because malay is still really intelligible to
me. just wording difference. although, they have tribal languages that i dont
understand at all. sometimes people will just be talking in iban and i get so lost.
i can only say how are you and good bye in iban so far. also, it's funny beacuse
almost all the members call me elder bukit, which is the malay word for hill. did
the people in quebec ever do that to you? it's so funny, and the members get a good
laugh out of it. they laugh all the time. i love it. im pretty glad we dont have the
discussions memorized out here. it's much easier to be able to say things in your
own words. i feel like i can teach most things, but my comp does take over a lot
because he thinks i mess a lot of things up. oh well. i'm still getting experience.
also, im in a training period, where i have to pass off all the lessons to my
district leader and i have to read the book of mormon and preach my gospel and
memorize a list of missionary scripture masteries. i'm about 60% done with the
scriptures, but ihavent started passing off the lessons yet. i'm going to do my first
one this friday. i guess what i mean by this is that i feel like my training is
going well. it's fun. i have like 10 more weeks to finish, and i guess by then i'll
be a full fledged missionary! i have so much fun tho. the investigators are great.
it's so great to see people keeping commitments and changing because of the gospel.
we've been in a bit of a slump this past week, but we're working really hard to
strengthen the branch we're in. just hard work every day. i get so sweaty, but i've
never loved working so much in my life! oh yeah, so i read the message you wrote in
the journal for me that you gave me for my birthday and i just want to thank you for
it. it's really helpful. i'm sorry i never was really grateful before the mission,
but i can see how much you and mom have done for me the longer i'm out on the mission.
thanks so much for everything. i love you and mom very much. but anyways, i have to
get going, so i'll talk to you next week. let me know how your classes are doing and
how the fam is. :)

love, zac

Re: ‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/15/09 8:33 PM
To: quiltingqueen57@hotmail.com
hey mom! its so good to hear from you. yeah i heard that manticore died. thats a shame but we knew it was coming. its funny that you mention the blow gun because the two trainers already have one. haha i just bought this sweet tribal mask. it was only like 6 bucks! stuff here is so cheap. i may get a blow gun some time later. they have some pretty sweet fabrics here tho. they have things called sarungs that people wear around kind of like lava lavas that most missionaries get here. maybe ill send one home for you. what kind of fabric are you looking for anyway? ill see what i can find. it's still pretty hot here. its not yet into the rainy season, but it rains every week still. elder herbst said he's seen it where it rains for 10+ hours straight, so i guess i have that to look forward to. about the investigators, we have some good ones. a mother father and daughter are really making good progress and are slated to be baptized on the 3rd. its so sweet! i love teaching people. this is really the coolest thing ive ever done. i just feel so great when i testify to people that i dont even really mind if they dont accept. i know im planting seeds. also, the best part about being a missionary is just being nice to people all the time. i dont think ive ever smiled so much in my life and its so fun! i wish i would have learned that early. life would have been much better. thanks about the pumpkin. i dont think they really celebrate halloween here, so ill have to do without for a while. it's good tho. i'm having so much fun. oh yeah, about the language, i feel better about it now than i did last week. im starting to understand people more and i can say more things. just improve every day. it's so fun to learn. when i was young and imagining a mission, i never wouldve thought it would be like this, but i wouldnt give it up for the world! also, ive eaten yam and corn ice cream, they have this crazy corn and a rose flavored drink, and also i ate one of those fish that they just cook whole! the people here just wont let you get by without eating, so i have to eat! haha. i'm thinking that ill be able to eat anything when i get back. anywyas, i hope all of you are doing really well. take care of yourself mom. i love you and appreciate everything you do for me. oh yeah, next week i wont be emailing til thursday, so ill talk to you then.
love, zac

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

first letters from the field

Re: ‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/08/09 8:58 PM
To: quiltingqueen57@hotmail.com
hey mom! how are you! things are going so well here it's crazy! i love it here so much.
it's pretty weird to get used to at first. there's so much going on. i got to
singapore just fine. it was nuts because oure group of 16 was the biggest single group
that has ever come to the mission at once. our mission president had all of our
trainers come to meet us in singapore and we all had an orientation on how the mission
works and all that. it was really cool being in such a huge group of missionaries.
we walked around the city a bit and did some contacting on buses and all that. it was
some much fun. then after two days they flew us all out to our areas. everyone in
the mtc group went to malaysia. i'm here in kuching, which is pretty much the best
area ever. it covers so much area tho. holy moly there was one day where we rode over
40 miles in the day i think. lots and lots of riding. but it's so awesome. i meant
to get a picture of my bike, but we've been really busy with the work so i havent
had much time to get pictures for you. don't worry, i'll try to get pictures of all
the sweet stuff. there's an area we travel to where we cross this huge river and it's
really amazing to see. i can't believe the area here. i've never seen anything like
it. i live in a 3 story building on the top, and our backyard has a pond with fish
in it, and then it's just jungle! we share our apartment with two other missionaries
working in the same branch as us. my comp's name is elder rajah-kaganasabai. lol he's
pretty cool. he's from australia of sri lankan descent. the other elders in the
house are elder herbst and elder tyler. elder tyler was in the mtc with me, but he
was in the other district. it's pretty cool to have another newbie with us. we have
a lot of fun teaching. it's been pretty hard trying to understand people these past
few days. the first day i was here was so intense. i couldn't understand anything!
it's getting much better bu t i still have a lots of trouble. i can speak a little
but i still just gotta work at it. i can take part in lessons, but i still don't
teach much because it's kind of hard to think of what to say, but i say more and
more every day. basically, since ive been here we've been meeting some of the
members and investigators. we've also been contacting. we've gotten like 7 new
investigators so far. the work here is going great. we're working on trying to
split our branch. we have about 130 people coming to church every week and we need
about 170, so we're really busy all the time finding and teaching. teaching is so
fun! the people here are great. they always give us drinks. they have crazy drinks
here, like rose flavored and lots of fruit flavored drinks. they also have this type
of hot chocolate stuff called milo that they serve piping hot even tho it's really
hot here all the time. oh man, it's so humid here. i dont think ive ever sweat more
in my life! and we all have to hang our clothes up to dry. haha. food wise, i havent
really had anything to crazy to eat. we dont really eat at members houses.
investigators will put out some bread or something to eat, but that's about it.
elder tyler also says his investigators give them tons to eat, but not ours. lol.
we had some chicken the other day (which was pretty much the only meal ive eaten
from someone) it still had all the bones and skin and all that. there was the neck
heart and kidney as well. it's a little weird to get used to, but that's what the
people eat. besides that, we've just been teaching a lot. there were about two
investigators on date for baptism when i got here. we havent gotten any more yet,
but we're working hard on it. oh yeah, it's kind of funny. there's this little
gravel road that leads to our house when we come home at night that has no lights
or anything, so we have to kind of ride it blind, and the missionaries here call it
"jalan beriman" which means "have faith way" or something close to that. i'm sorry
it's been a while since i've written. know that i love you all and that i love it
here in malaysia! my p days are on wednesdays, so i'll be writing to you then. oh
yeah, as well, we dont wear our name tags in malaysia, but we can in singapore. we
found out that the church is cleared in malaysia with the national government, but
the local government still hastles us so we oblige them. as well, by law we can't
teach muslims, bbut there are lots of tribal people here that we can teach. they are
the coolest people ever. mostly here they have ibans and another tribe that i cant
remember lol. the ibans used to be head hunters back in the day. my comp has a
picture of some skulls from wwII. but they are the nicest people ever. so friendly
and just a people with great faith. i'm truly blessed to be working here, especially
at this time. anyways, i gotta go. talk to you all later!

love, elder Hill

Re: RE: singapore‏
From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Tue 9/08/09 10:23 PM
To: wodenowl@hotmail.com

hey dad. yeah the island of borneo is pretty crazy. it's so jungly here. there are lots of little shacks here, but in kuching there's also some nice developed areas. i'm surprized, because i've seen some of the biggest houses here! but almost everyone we teach lives in a little shack. it's so humbling. these people have some much faith. some of them cant even really read, and they are converted on our words and prayer. it's so amazing! it's been such a wonderful experience for my first week and i cant wait for the weeks to come. i've been pretty eaten alive by mosquitos tho. but i'm having so much fun. the people here are great. the tribal people are so awesome. they have the coolest decorations. sometime i hope to get a sweet blow gun here. they used to use them back when they were head hunters. but they are the nicest smallest people. i would never expect them to have been head hunters. also, when it comes to muslims, it's really easy to tell because they almost all wear traditional clothing and they have kind of a certain look about them. plus, when we contact we just ask what people they're from and if they say "malayu" we thank them and walk away. pretty much anyone else we can teach, so it's really good. the work is going really well here. we've been getting new investigators every day. we're working at splitting the branch we're in, so we have a big goal to keep us busy. i'll keep you informed on anything else sweet that happens. i'm sure ive forgotten a lot, since this wekk has been pretty busy and kind of overwhelming. but take care. i love you and i'll talk to you next week.
love, elder hill

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Zac lands in Singapore and gets new assignment

From: Zachary Hill (zrhill@myldsmail.net)
Sent: Wed 9/02/09 4:00 AM
To: wodenowl@hotmail.com
hey dad and mom. so i didnt have time to call you in hong kong and they told me to just
email you here in singapore, so i'm just letting you know that i'm all right and i got
here safely. life is going great and everything is so awesome here. the humidity is
pretty powerful, but it's all good. i found out my first area is going to be kuching,
which is in east malaysia. i'll leave singapore friday. my trainer is from austrailia
i guess. i'm really excited. kuching is a really awesome sounding area. anyways, i
have to go. i'll write more to you sometime later. also tell nyss i'm sorry i didn't
get to talk to her long. i love you all. take care.

elder hill