(French for: "This is Africa") A common term used by the missionaries when they want to express "thats just the way it is because "THIS IS AFRICA"! ie..."the power went out..AGAIN... C'est Afrique...or sometimes denoted as TIA...This Is Africa!!)) Elder Halvorsen has been serving a full time mission since January of 2009 in the Ivory Coast, Abidjan West Africa Mission. This mission encompasses the countries of Benin, Togo and Ivory Coast. He loves it there and is enjoying his experiences serving the Lord and the people of West Africa!!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

All is well in Paradise

We're rockin' Zogbho. We just had two more baptisms with other dates set. No Packages. Starting to get mad at that fact... New couple a arrives the 12th I heard. The food is different, [in Benin] more rice and beans kinda stuff and lots of pastes with WAY more pepper and it's hotter here. I'm gonna need new shoes in a month or 3. Shirts are fine, pants, net, all that is good. Haven't opened my new garments. I haven't seen any games inside the stade, but there's people ALL AROUND playing. Sundays are CRAZY! Every sunday.

Sounds like a lot of fun things have happened this week. I feel kinda bad cause I haven't written specifically to the boys, but then again, the only time one wrote me was when Austin wanted the Iphone. : P Well boys, I don't have much counsel today, but Happy Birthday to Dad, Austin, and Chandler next week! I can't believe Austin has 16 years... That's just weird...

Well here are some of the things that I noticed this week:

We've had this girl that we reactivated that just left for Ghana for school today, and she UNLOADED all her CD's to me. So I have a ton of African and French music now. I'm seriously addicted to Zouglou, which is a type of music in Côte D'Ivoire. I hear it all the time in the Maquis. And I'm going to keep looking for more. Music is really cheap here. A buck a CD. There's guys that go around and sell CD's too.

I hope that you're keeping all the emails I send cause sometimes I forget to add things in my journal that I write to you, so I'm going to throw copies of all my emails in my journal.

since I still haven't gotten my card, I won't be able to send any gifts for Christmas... It's a real bummer cause I had some cool stuff planned... Grandpa airmailed a letter to me... Had a letter about stuff he had been doing. MAN that man is never stopping. Just keeps on going and he is BUSY!

We bought this HUGE bannana branch with like 40 bannanas on it. Guess how much? 4 bucks. MUAHAHAHA! Straight off the tree. they're good too. We took some funny photos.

We have a couple families that are progressing rapidly for baptism. I think We'll have some candidates for the 10th, but what I've leared in Africa is NEVER count 100% on something. Lol! Like our shower. I'm SO thankful for the all purpose tool I bought now. It's how we turn the shower on. Gotta use the pliers. C'est Afrique.

So I'm at a total of 45 marriage proposals for my mission. I just received five in one day.... None of which I have accepted which you will probably be glad to hear. [Yes, yes I am]

Out baptism went really well. We had two candidates, a mom and here daughter. This lady is SO funny and SO strong. It's great. On the Investigator sheet she marked Member, and we had to explain that she has to be baptised before she is a member. LOL! And her daughter is incredibly strong too. We thought that she was 18 or 20 years old cause she's got the form of a full grown woman. She's Twelve... E. Adams and I did not believe her. Then she pulled out her birth information... Dang... ANYWAYS, their baptême was the 26th.

First, let me telll you something. I DREADED the thought of having to baptise this woman. She weighs a bit. And she's short. So we asked her who she would like to baptise her, and she said let me think about it. So we called her later, and i asked again. She said, Maybe ghisquiere? I said that could work. Then she said, or better yet, You? Oh man. Of course I said yes. Let me also tell you that I have lost every ounce of muscle I gained and my arms are twigs.

So I get into the font and I'm nervous... She comes in and i'm like okay. PLEASE Lord, just let me be able to do this. So I do the prayer and go down and she starts wriggling around like a fish. Just so you know, Africans HATE water.

So she had a part of her body was still out of the water and I got her up but MAN did it kill. My arm was burning. So I try to reassure her and tell her she can't wiggle like that. so I prayed even harder the second time. Oh man did I pray. I finish the prayer and got her down and got her up and it was solid. So she gets out and my arm is just shuddering. Her daughter comes in, flawless. So here comes the next day. About half way in the day, I raised my hand to wave to someone, and yes. My arm was completely sore. IT KILLED! But really, I don't care if it hurt or even if it broke off. This lady is SO strong and she deserved to be baptised too, and I was just extremely happy that I'm the one that did it. : )

Another funny story. We were at an investigators house. Elder Adams had just finished talking and it was my turn. So I start bearing my testimony on a subject and this HUGE bug flies into my mouth and starts buzzing everywhere. So I'm sitting there frantically trying to spit this thing out and everyone is just cracking up. It was pretty hilarious. Fr. Florent said, maybe you were just talking too much. Punk.

Well that's it really. I can't think or anything too crazy. We had 8 investigators at church last sunday. Oh. And yesterday we were teaching a girl that's finally decided to change, and her brother (who takes no pride in personal hygiene. Like, NONE) decided to flick on the TV. He's a member too. We asked him nicely to turn it off for the prayer. And then he said "To hell with you and your problems" to his sister. We're definitely going to having a nice little chat with him VERY soon. ; )

Well Fam, I miss you all a ton and love you all very Much! I want the Boys to know I care about them too and miss them like crazy!!!!!!!!

All is well in Paradise,

Love Elder Halvorsen

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