Thursday, June 28, 2012


hello everybody!

So great to hear that you are doing awesome mom! i'll always be amazed at the world of modern medicine...slicin people around and movin/removin their insides haha. I hope you take the advice of the doctor and take it easy! That's awesome that that dvd arrived. I wanna see it! i guess I can wait till i get home and then i can laugh at myself haha. 

I actually received the 4th of July package before the other because the senior couple went to Singapore for a conf and they brought that one back for me. I'll be going to Singapore next week. I'll fly out alone but theres a chance i may connect with some other elders. I should be able to finally get my camera situation worked out. the Canon store here in Tawau sent it to KK, who said the warratny didnt cover it beacause the camera broke inc Malaysia, and i had bought it in Singapore... So they are sending it back and they said it should be under warranty, I just have to claim it in singapore....anyways I'm flying out next tuesday and coming back wednesday. so one night only. But i'll get to see some MTC companions and also Elder Trotter. 

Me and Elder Tadius are still struggling to find new people to teach, but I think with some serious coordinated efforts from the senior couple we will be able to find some new people next week. i'm continuously learning that missionary work does not happen on its own haha. as it seemed to with E. Trotter. 

This week we went to a funeral for a Tator person that had died. one of the best members here is Sis Tina, who tried to talk to you guys on mothers day haha. anyways Tina is a Tator lady, which is a tribe/race from Indonesia. Anyways (haha) she invited us to the funeral and there were so many Tator people there, and usually Tator people are Christian, so we got all excited to try n contact people, but we never got a chance... anyways at the end a bunch of guys got in a circle and did some traditional Tator chanting/singing. it was really cool! like one guy would start up and then others would join until everyone was singing and then just out of nowhere they would all stop at like the same instant. really sweet. 

Also I ate what was probly the hardest/nastiest thing i've ever eaten. it's called kanji, and from what i can gather it's basically like cotton... it looks like wet cotton balls, and feels in your mouth like spider web. cant really chew it, cant really cut it, you just kind of swallow it with the soup it is served in. so nasty. and of course right as i was finishing up i was served, without being asked, another helping that was bigger than what i started out with...... blech! so thats my food for last week, this week seems to present another possible foodnenture. Friday is Sis Myla (recent convert, awesome. always feeds us) and E. Tadius' birthday! Myls said that they are going to cook the "bloody-bloody" which seems to either be bloody as in juicy and delicious BBQ, or bloody as in half cooked BBQ... hahaha so i''ll let you know how that turns out. 

thats about all i got for this week :D

Elder Giblette

Kanji... the whitish clear stuff in the soup. more or less it looks like cotton balls and tastes like a...spider web? nasty.

me again bein hot n stuff 

just a typical mayonnaise sandwich...given by a member hahaha

some jungle

New Foods + Pics


Well this week has been a little tough and a little fun. tough because NONE of our investigators came to church... Basically the biggest reason for people not coming to church is that they are illegal and they do not have documents. they are always too scared to ride the bus into town because if they get stopped by the police they will be thrown in jail basically without question. Pretty much the exact situation with Mexicans in the US. The Phillipinos and Indonesians come over to work, and they either dont bother to come legally or they dont have the money. So that was pretty tough not having a single investigator at church. This means we will probably have to push one girls baptism back another week, but her situation is different. She works very far from the downtown area and she can only come down if her boss comes down. but she usually is able to come down for church, but this past week her boss for some reason decided not to come down. the bus or taxi is the only way people can come to church. Only the senior couple and the branch president have cars. we kind of dont bother asking either because we know if our investigators rely on free transportation, they will not remain active. Our investigator pool is pretty small and it's really hard to find new investigators. trotter and i had been successful with referrals, but we kind of exhausted that resource, and I dont really know of a lot of places in town where there are a lot of non-Muslims. anyways this is just the normal challenges of a mission i suppose

Getting to know Elder Tadius has been interesting and largely funny. He understands a good amount of English but rarely speaks it. so im always asking for clarification or what a word means. so thats all really good. He's from a fairly remote part of Malaysia, it's about 3 hours from the city of Kota Kinabalu (KK) which is the big city in the state here in Sabah. anyways his story was that he wanted to become a Catholic priest, but when he applied they told him he needed to have two years "work experience" which basically meant take two years to enjoy life before you become a slave to the Catholics hahaha (seriously though) so he went to Singapore to work and it was in Singapore he found the church. he's turning 25 next week so he's pretty old as a missionary, a convert of about 4 years. 

that's kind of his conversion story. he also told me about some of the things his ancestors did. this is good stuff. He was telling me about how in his kampong (hometown) that there were a certain number of black magicians, and that he himself dabbled in black magicry as a teenager. haha he didnt go too far in depth with that though. he also told me that his kampong used to have (few generations before his time) a decent number of head hunters. He told me about his own family (generations back) were head hunters and that they would regularly EAT MOST OF THE HEAD OF THEIR VICTIMS! CRAZY!!!! he told me about more crazy stuff like his great grandpa having some kind of object that seems to be the direct cause of the death of his grandparent's family's deaths... crazy stuff. He also kind of gave me a history about Borneo/headhunters in general. he said that when the British came and introduced Christianity, the headhunter culture quickly fell away in the area that Elder Tadius used to live. that the government and Christianity kind of reformed the poeple and civilized them. But to this day, further into Borneo, the state of Sarawak, headhunting still occurs, and that many people still carry on a lot of the traditional Borneo cultures. Where elders serve is only in relatively big cities, where headhunting is a thing of the past. but still elders can/have found houses of members and investigators where people still keep the old heads hanging in the house! So it is likely in the future that I will send a picture home of me standing next to decapitated heads... :D

Also i'ev been a lot more...outgoing... with food this week. E Tadius likes eating fish, so i first tried some at a restaurant, and it was super expensive but pretty good. my confidence was built, and after that, TWO NIGHTS IN A ROW, a philipino member wanted to serve us dinner: sardines and other various dried fish with rice. needless to say they were NOT good, and i struggled for a considerable amount of time... Last night though she prepared a new dish that involved the hind legs of a pig. basically it was just that. the hind legs chopped up and served in a soup. Once again i prepared myself for a struggle. but the sop was actually quite tasty and the legs were so soft and tender. the skin even was quite soft and the fleshy muscles underneath the skin tasted quite like boiled eggs. also in a different dish of with rice and fish and pieces of the heart of the pig! the heart wasnt that great, but it wasnt that bad either. I think so far the best thing a member has made for me, and maybe the best food since i've been out, was chicken curry. She prepared pieces of chicken (nothing special) and also she had chopped up potatoes in a kind a curry soup. eaten with rice. WOO! dang good. i told her i wanted to learn how to make it so maybe she'll teach me. So i hope you all can be satisfied that i have finally suffered some less than palatable foods this week hahaha.

Mom i hope your surgery goes well (maybe it is happening right now) you have my prayers as always and I know that this will all be ok. I hope everyone has a good week!

Elder Giblette

some dudes playin some mud soccer right on the stinky, dirty beach

A muslim cemetery

another classic Malaysian product the "Dr. Martini" shoeline. hahahah.

a pretty good story for the picture with all the people. if you'll remember when i first arrived in Tawau i went to a group of houses on sketchy stilts that goes out over the ocean. E Tadius wanted to go there so we were walking amongst the houses and came across this group of older ladies who were just as happy as can be to see a white guy haha. anyways i was kinda talkin to them and then all these kids start crowding around me and start to just like poke/touch my exposed, white legs hahahah! like in a movie or something haha. so I asked if i could take a picture and of course they were thrilled. as we were kind of getting into position one of the ladies just like hands me her baby and was like "take my baby!" hahahahaah so thats me holding some stinky little malaysian baby ha! pretty crazy

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

New Companion + Pics

hello semua

well it finally happened, elder Trotter was transferred and i got a new companion. Trotter went to Miri, Sarawak. still in Borneo, just in another state of Malaysia. speaking of that, Sarawak, the other of two states in Eastern Malaysia, Sarawak wants to basically be its own country. so usually if elders have problems moving between countries its because of sarawak. haha anyways my companion is a native! His name is Elder Tadius, and he's from KK, the big city in the state of Sabah, in Eastern Malaysia. he's really not very far from home haha. he can understand most of my enlgish, but he only likes speaking in Malay. so I guess you could say my language is gonna be pretty dang good haha. he's pretty short, and stocky too. it'll be nice to know that i can basically try to explain anything i can think of in a lesson, and know that my companion will be able to clear up any confusion.

so after a while i will probably have some of the best Malay in the mission because Western Malaysia basically doesnt speak Malay, ever, and Sarawak's Malay is only "pure" in the big city of Kuching. there is a tribe of people throughout Malaysia, from the state of Sarawak, called Ibans. they basically speak a dialect of Malay that sounds like malay, just totally unknown words haha. anyways the state i am in, Sabah, is considered to have the most pure Malay. pretty exciting.

it is to be predicted by elder Tadius and Trotter, that i will likely stay in Tawau for quite some time. there is large group coming in in August, and they both think i will be a trainer then. (it is not rare for a missionary to become trainer after 6 months in the field) anyways that still seems far off so i dont really think about it.

this transfer also means that i'm now alot more responsible for the work here in Tawau for a bit until Elder Tadius becomes more familiar with the area and the members and the investigators. it makes me way stressed out if i think about it too much, but i've definitely gained the skill of not letting myself think about EVERYthing, but rather focusing what needs to happen today, or tomorrow. later on with experience i think i'll be goos at planning farther ahead. it's also good because Malaysians themselves only plan a day or two in advance haha.

i have recently gained a testimony and experience in how quickly the Spirit can come when i am willing to love. Love everything. investigators, members, all you guys. when we genuinely love each other, and really just want to help, the Spirit comes and people can feel that. I think that's one of the most important aspects of teachings people. if we show them love, and let them know that we only want to teach them how they can improve their lives, they will be much more likely to keep commitments. if they dont feel it is important, or if they feel they are doing it for the elders, they will do it.

oh ya haha we had another baptism on saturday. her name is Paulina, i got the do the ordinance again :D with Paulina, shes about 50, (looks like 40 at oldest) she didnt really seem to understand the purpose of all our lessons, didnt seem to get the WHY. probably about three weeks before her baptism, we taught her the Restoration again, and for some reason, that time it just clicked for her, and everything after that, the commandments, whatever, was smooth sailing for her. she's really faithful and sweet. her daughter, Shelly, started learning at the same time, and lately has been less enthusiastic about meeting and learning. but i think her mom being baptized has been a great example to her and i'm pretty sure she will be baptized eventually.

always love hearing about stuff at home. i think at this point going fishing sounds like the most fun haha. hopefully you guys will get to go out a lot this summer.

Elder Giblette

haha so the one is a bunch of dudes we found that literally look like they're from the 80s right?! haha they got on the bus and it was just like one after the other these guys with this hair. i couldnt help but start laughin and i finally just asked them if their hair was real or not. one guy was like, in english, "YES! YES! YES! NO! NO! ROCK NOT DEAD!" hahahahah idk why he ever said no, why he yelled. idk know why any of them were doing what they were doing hahaha. but they ended up getting off at the same bus stop as us and we got this gnarly radical wicked picture. they told us they were going to a music studio you can like rent out and "just jam" haha so trotter and i figured they are either really good, or really bad haha

Paulina, who was baptized Saturday

ALL of the young men in the branch with Trotter

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

June 6th

hello all!
its been a great week! a busy week! an exhausting week! we had 21 lesson taught with a member present, as well as other lessons. but last year, for the area of Tawau, the record for member presents was 10, and we got 21!!!! so needless to say we were quite busy. its weird having p-day on wednesday because this next week is like half over already, so i end up writing about last week 1/2...? anyways the baptism for Ling-Ling went very well. i got to baptize her! it was really sweet to be able to do the ordinance, let alone in another language hahaha. but ya her mother came. and this is kinda crazy. while ling-ling's mother knew she was taking the lessons, she did not know it was leading up to baptism. and Ling-Ling was keeping that a secret from her mother. and then her mother shows up separately from Ling-Ling haha. i guess ling-ling's aunt had talked to her and gotten her to come. but Ling-Ling was all scared that her mother was gonna freak out or something, so she like talked to her mom before we started and everything was ok. her testimony is really strong and she was really ready to be baptized. also she's a lot more educated and intellectual about everything, most people dont really or arent able to connect all the lessons together hahah.

transfer news will be given this weekend so we will know whats happening. i dont want Elder Trotter to go haha because i feel like i'm just getting used to teaching with him, and getting used to missionary work in general with him, and now he might leave! but of course i'll be ready and willing to work just as hard if i get a new comp!

i might get the package before my visa run, but otherwise it will be fine waiting in Singapore. that will probly be the case because it is somewhat heavy. anyways i cant wait to get it!

i really do keep you in my prayers mommy! i dont like hearing that youre in pain either haha! but i know you're strong and this will all be cleared up. i know this is a short message but i dont really feel like i have much else to share haha. it's kinda hard because i really want to try to share my experiences with everyone in a way that they can kinda experience what i'm experiencing, but i konw that cant really be done so its whatever.

enjoy the pics haha. and tell ali to get on updating the blog haha! maybe kellen could post the pictures i send home on my facebook. you should have the info :D

Love you all!

Elder Giblette

May 31st

hello all!
sorry to have been keeping you on your seats haha! so last week with the late email, no worries, that was cleared by our zone leaders. also this week we went on splits yesterday with the APs for our p-day, so our p-day just got moved to today. i truly appreciate your concern and council though
so last week and this week have been pretty dang exciting as far as the work is concerned! we will be having a baptism for one of our investigators this saturday! her name is Ling-Ling, shes like 22 and phillipino, but born here in tawau, so her malay is really really good, and she can understand a lot of english. we're really excited for her because shes already made some big changes in her life. but she's definitely ready and its gonna be great. basically all of our current investigators are from referrals, and i can now testify to the importance of finding people through investigators and members. i really want to share about all the people we're teaching but it would literally take hours haha. i guess a summary could be that almost all our investigators are very solid, they keep their commitments, last week we had a record number of investigators at church for me and E. Trotter, 8! they enjoy reading from the scriptures. we're jsut enjoying a decent sized pool of investigators that are all very good :)
today i will go to a shop and should get some more definitive news about my camera. last week at semporna we went to that big hill i told you about. also went to a place called floating with the see through floors as hotel rooms and they also have a place with some good sized fish there. tried to look for some good souvenir shops and failed haha. it's too touristy so the shop have all this cheap crap haha. the town smaller than Tawau, and i guess semporna is more like the portal town to get to the diving city. its a cool drive out from Tawau though because you go through some palm oil plantation country and a little bit of jungle also.

ya so the only thing i wanted to add to the package list was those razors. ya im excited though.

so as far as transfer news is concerned it's startin to look like Trotter will be transferred to a zone leader postion. that'll be in two weeks when a very large chunk of elders will be going home. thats basically how the transfer cycles work here. every three months when new elders come in, is when elders get shuffled around. it's lookin like trotter and i will be able to go on a visa run at the same time, so that'll be fun. the senior couple is the Atkinsons. generally senior couples stay in one area their whole mission so they are going anywhere haha. its not that rare to have just us and the senior couple. our area is not really that big, so having more elders wouldnt really be that helpful. i guess when this was english speaking they had two sets of elders and a set of chinese speakers here in Tawau. i cant imagine that lasted long though because there just arent really enough people to support that.

as much as i dont mention it in my emails, i really do appreaciate hearing about whats goin on at home! however boring it may seem to you haha. mom i'm sorry to hear about your pains! i will keep you in my prayers! maybe this is the Lord's way of showing you you work out too much and you're too hard on you body hahaha. just kiddin mommy! i havent really taken any pictures because the senior couples im borrowing isnt very good haha. so hopefully i'll get something figured out soon.

i know i didnt answer all your questions haha but i still love you mom!


Elder Giblette

May 24th


it seems like its been forever since i emailed! but ya yesterday we went to semporna finally, and it was pretty sweet. the places we were told about were definitely over hyped but we still had a good time. i didnt see anything about diving really, but thats because the diving spots are still a little ways from the semporna city area. but we went to a little place where you could look at fish and the water is pretty dang clear.

Elder Trotter actaully renewed his the same week he picked me up so we'll probly go to Singapore at the same time. normally i'm not sure what they do. i'd probly go somewhere or stay with the senior couple for a few days. idk haha.

that scripture about the sticks is really cool. i've definitely come to know that scripture a lot better. unfortunately people just arent that educated or are not very familiar with the Bible for us to use that scripture. we really do have to teach in the simplest way possible. the mosquitos are slim to none. unless you go into the jungle, then the bugs get pretty annoying, but nothing absurd. last P-day we went on a little jungle trek in like a state park type of deal, but it stunk because we kinda went late and didnt have enough time to get to any of the places we wanted to see, so it just like an hour and a half of walking through the jungle on muddy paths. which was still pretty "bidet" situation is pretty great, i cant lie. i'm definitely used to it. to the point where i do not enjoy the rare occasion i have to use TP.

Ok this is going to sound bad but dont fret over it. my camera, while on the jungle trek, straight up stopped working. i didnt drop it, didnt get it wet. at first it said the battery was dead, but i had a full charge. i'm pretty sure its the camera, not the battery thats the problem. so the camera will just not turn on. theres a place here in tawau that might be able to help out. otherwise i actually have a warranty for the place in singapore, so if nothing turns out before i go back i should be able to figure something out in singapore. so dont worry as of now. the senior couple has an extra camera they are letting me borrow so thats nice.

i cant think of anything else! if you think have any questions or problems about the package just email me and we can wait to send it until after next week when i can email again.

love you all!
Elder Giblette

Hike and Monkey

ya so in Semporna we climbed this really tall, steep hill (using stairs) that was supposed to have a cave with skeletons in it. turns out there isnt really anything except huge rocks ontop of a tall hill haha. but it was cool cuz we found a little outcrop with a sweet view and just kinda chilled an chatted there. also have some pictures from my jungle trek. also have that monkey. there were just a bunch of monkeys hangin out in front of the restaurant we ate at. i got like within two feet of one. pretty sweeeet!

Elder Gibbs