Monday, April 6, 2009

2009_04_06 Pokemon in Ecuador

Braxton wrote to Curtis on Sun, 05 Apr 2009 19:51:41 -0600
Subject: Hi

How has Ecuador been for you so far? I can't believe that it's been almost eight months since you went to the MTC. I hope that you are still doing good and that you are feeling good and doing the work that you have been sent to do. I hope that you are having fun.

I finally got past the part on Pokemon Colleseum and I beat the entire game, but I still have to battle about 60 trainers in the Mt. Battle before Ho-oh will join my team and I have two Suicune and two Raikou and one Entei. I have the three starters from Gold and Silver over on Saphire and have hatched the eggs of Chickorita and Totodile, but not Cyndyquil yet. But I am getting a lot farther on it and I am just sending Zigzagoons, Poocheyenas, and Wurples over to Colleseum for all of the Pokemon that I had to purify. I need to get the new pokemon game Platinum, but Mom won't let me buy it yet, even though I have 55.19 dollars. I also want to get Pokemon XD, Gale of Darkness. It has a Shadow Lugia and it has Zapdos, Moltres, and Articuno. I also want to get Pokemon Ranger, because there is supposedly a special mission after you beat the main story line that has a Manaphy which can be bred with Ditto to get Phione, which is a totally different species that doesn't even evolve into Manaphy. I doubt that I will have enough money to buy all three so I will probably get Platinum and then XD Gale of Darkness and then Pokemon Ranger.

I love you lots and miss you a ton. I miss having to run away from you and bugging Clain together, but I know that you are doing the right thing and setting a really good example for Clain and me. I hope that the people's minds and hearts will be open to the gospel.

Your little buddy (Braxton)

Hey little buddy,

Guess what? Today I am in a different city, in a different part of Ecuador. I am now in Valencia, in the zone Quevedo North. Things are going good. I am busy learning a new sector now. It is another huge sector like Balzar.

Hey that’s cool about finally beating the Pokemon Colleseum. Did you know that they have Pokemon here in Ecuador too?! They do! It is on TV and some kids, mostly the kids with rich parents, have Gameboys with Pokemon. Consider yourself lucky that you have the oportunidad to have Gameboys and games because some kids don´t. I love you buddy!

Love your Favorite Elder,

Elder Goode

Note from Mom:

Braxton at age 4

Braxton grew up loving Pokemon. Curtis had a Gameboy and a Pokemon game when Braxton was little and Braxton wanted one so badly. We finally gave in and got him his own Gameboy and Pokemon game, when he was four, because he was always messing with Curtis's Gameboy. We never thought he would be able to really play it, but he could. He learned to read by reading the words on that Gameboy screen. He could read very well before he ever started school. I thought at first that he was just identifying things by the pictures, but when I would write the words on a paper, he could read them, every single one and if I combined them into sentences, he could read those, too. He could even read to me out of the Guidebooks.

Braxton at age 2 on his bed

Curtis had a Pokemon poster of the very first 100 Pokemon. It hung on the wall right next to Braxton's bed. Braxton memorized every one of those Pokemon by name and number. He has always had a mind for math and an amazing memory. He could recite all 100 Pokemon when he was 2 years old. It was so cute. We could not believe it. I wish so much that we would have had a video camera back then to record those amazing moments. He could do it for several years. We laughed and laughed at the way he would rattle them off. If he got stuck, his eyes would roll up and to the left as his brain worked to retrieve the next Pokemon name. He was so very adorable with his two dimples.

Braxton has an amazing memory for details like his dad. He knows so much about Pokemon and luckily he has a couple of good friends who are also interested in Pokemon. They talk Pokemon all the time, even though it is not technically "cool" to be in love with Pokemon when you are in seventh grade. I think his love for Pokemon will last a lifetime.

Craig uses his amazing memory to keep all the details about his pigeons organized in his head. He can go back generation after generation and recite details of their race records. It is truly amazing. Craig can recite anything that has to do with numbers, like every phone number we have ever had. What a gift! Curtis seems to possess this same gift. We hope it is helping him to memorize all the scriptures that he has to have passed off by May 11th to his zone leader.

Each year, we try to ask the kids what things they want to do during the summer for fun. One summer, I think about 2001, the kids said they just wanted to have time to play during the summer. I promised them if they would work really hard all morning doing their chores, we would play all afternoon. We all got Gameboys, Pokemon games (red, blue and yellow versions), Legend of Zelda, Oracle of Ages Games and Oracle of Seasons Games, and Guidebooks. We had a blast that summer, Mom playing with the kids all afternoon. It was awesome. Braxton played all the hard parts for mom because I am just not that coordinated at video games. I think he beat all of my bosses in Zelda. It has had an interesting effect because now I know enough about both games that I can have an intelligent conversation with Braxton or the other boys about the games they are playing and I generally understand most of what they are saying. It has given us a common frame of reference. I think we will all remember it as one of our most favorite summers ever. I have always felt bad that Craig and Shara missed out. They were both gone to work all day.

I have been wondering all afternoon if I got Braxton a Pokemon game in Spanish if he would be able to learn to read Spanish. I think it might just work. The hard part would be learning to pronounce the words in Spanish the right way. Maybe a few Pokemon videos in Spanish would do the trick. :)

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